Francesa’s replacement on WFAN inside afternoons is usually a trio: the former Jets linebacker Bart Scott, Sports Illustrated’s digital video anchor Maggie Gray, along with Chris Carlin, who began as a producer for “Mike & the Mad Dog.” Mark Chernoff, the station’s longtime vice president for programming, said he expected their varied backgrounds along with personalities might bring in brand new listeners.
“To try to replace Mike with something that will sounds exactly like Mike is usually a death sentence,” Oliviero said.
Francesa seemed skeptical that will any departure by the traditional approach to attracting listeners on radio — with Great, old-fashioned content — will make a difference.
“When radio is usually at its best, the idea’s live along with local,” he said. “They’ve put too much of their effort into digital, along with not enough selling to the people who are in their backyard.”
Kornheiser, whose podcast, the Tony Kornheiser Show, grew out of his former radio show on ESPN Radio along with various stations inside Washington area, said Francesa might be the perfect entertainer to bridge the gap between the hyperlocal formula of traditional sports-talk along with the wider world of podcasting.
“You can get so much national stuff,” Kornheiser said. “however local is usually the commerce of your life.”
Indeed, Francesa’s shows are marked by his argumentative, often dismissive, repartee with the callers. Brian Monzo, Francesa’s producer, said the show averages 30 to 40 calls per hour, on 5 different lines, along with those are only the calls that will get through.
Some eccentric callers have developed their own reputations. A glance at a number on hold revealed how many times that will person had called (409) along with how many times he had gotten on air (87).
“I’m guessing that will’s Mike in North Carolina,” Monzo said. “I can tell the idea by the area code.”
Ian Eagle, a former board operator for “Mike & the Mad Dog” along with currently the play-by-play voice of the Nets, said Francesa boasted an “encyclopedic” memory for sports information, however that will was only part of his talent. Francesa’s ability to “discern what was most important in an event or story was unparalleled,” he said.
Francesa, though, commenced as a researcher for CBS Sports. Colleagues called him a “facts machine,” along with he still does his show with several newspapers in front of him, opened to the agate page of statistics along with standings. The turning point came in 1989, when WFAN paired him with Russo, blending his over-the-top energy with Francesa’s blunt, outer-borough, barstool-style authority. the idea proved a success almost overnight. Sports-talk channels began popping up around the country, replicating their formula.
“If those guys had failed, This particular whole push toward sports-talk radio might have definitely had a serious slowdown,” said Ted Shaker, a former CBS Sports executive producer.
currently, with Russo on satellite along with Francesa contemplating a jump to podcasts, that will era appears to be winding down.
“I’m going to miss him,” Oliviero said of Francesa. “however by a business standpoint, we’re excited.”
Undoubtedly, WFAN along with its parent company are creating a trade-off. In late November, after the Giants benched their quarterback, Eli Manning, a vintage, bellowing Francesa rant confirmed to listeners that will he was not slowing, despite those notorious clips of him falling asleep on the air. The tirade quickly caught fire on social media. On YouTube, a recording of the idea has been viewed more than 157,000 times.
however how many of those listeners ever tuned into the show? that will is usually the problem Entercom along with some other radio stations are trying to solve.
that will is usually no longer Francesa’s problem. After Friday, he becomes just another brand new Yorker that has a lot of opinions, looking for a place to channel them.
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