Monday, October 09, 2006

Sports Radio Shuffle, Continued

More on recent sports radio events in Cleveland...

The expected new home of ESPN Radio in Cleveland, new Good Karma Broadcasting acquisition WABQ/1540, is still doing gospel instead of sports.

Late this afternoon, we heard the station running its usual mix of gospel music and local spots and liners. And one, oddly enough, highlighted the presence of Dale Edwards on the station.

That's the same Dale Edwards who recently sold the station to Good Karma, and who's moving the format - sometime in the "coming weeks" - to the station he's still involved with, Radio Advantage One LLC's WBKC/1460 Painesville.

To that end, regular OMW tipster Nathan Obral in Avon was somehow able to pick up the 1460 signal clear across Lake Erie on the other side of Cleveland.

And he tells your Mighty Blog of Fun(tm) that the 24/7 satellite-delivered gospel format "Rejoice - Musical Soul Food" was heard this morning on WBKC instead of the simulcast of WCLV/104.9's classical music format.

It didn't last, as Nathan tells us WBKC was back to the WCLV simulcast later Monday afternoon.

Nathan confirmed the correct signal, as he heard a "tersely voiced" WBKC legal ID delivered by the station's Gary Webster as the only local element mixed into the satellite gospel format.

We're wondering if WBKC will pick up "Rejoice" for the nighttime hours not currently programmed on daytimer WABQ, and otherwise to supplement the station's locally-run programming.

You might recognize "Rejoice" if you're a regular OMW reader - it's the same satellite gospel format picked up by Youngstown market daytimer WRTK/1540 Niles, owned by the Harold Glunt World Empire (aka Beacon Broadcasting). It was formerly run by ABC Radio, and fell into private hands recently when ABC discontinued running it.

To bring this around, of course, 1540 is the same frequency occupied by WABQ's soon-to-be-former home, which will eventually (if all the rumblings are to be believed) sport the ESPN Radio sports format.

When?

Oh, Roger Brown, we're not worthy. From the latest Monday Media Column in the Cleveland Plain Dealer:

While there's been much talk about WABQ AM/1540 eventually becoming ESPN's new affiliate, look for WABQ - now a gospel station - to quietly make the switch to sports with little hoopla or advance publicity.

Hmm. Sounds familiar. Perhaps it was our speculation that if Good Karma's Craig Karmazin was stuck with only the current WABQ daytime signal, he might "soft launch" the new format until a final signal configuration was obtained?

One thing we're trying to figure out: How long will ESPN Radio be patient with not having an affiliate in Cleveland? You'd have to think they'd want on the air - somewhere - ASAP.

Among all this, we should note that we have no idea if the sale of WABQ from D&E Communications to Good Karma has officially closed, financially, or what the timetable is for the Good Karma takeover of AM 1540. The FCC approved the sale on August 30th.

By the way, Roger also notes the upcoming presence of Bob Costas' syndicated Premiere Radio show on WKNR/850, which will air Saturday mornings from 6-8 AM...

2 comments:

Neil said...

ESPN forgot the "bird in hand" rule (also known as "Don't count your chickens" etc.)

They should have waited till 1540 or 1300 or some combination thereof was firmly within their grasp before giving WKNR the gate.

But they didn't. So now Fox has WKNR, and ESPN, at least for the moment, has bupkiss in C-town.

radio listener said...

They had the AL Championship on Tuesday.