Monday, July 23, 2007

A Nice Monday Mix

...and our apologies for being a bit late, since we were "on the road".

We're back, with at least one item we believe to be an exclusive...

YET ANOTHER NEW SPORTS REPORTER: If we told you a Cleveland station was hiring a new sports reporter, you'd probably guess it would be ABC affiliate WEWS/5, right?

We mean, after all, "NewsChannel 5" has but two sports anchors/reporters on staff, and station veteran Sue Ann Robak is the only one who's working full-time...with Andy Baskin still doing fill-in.

Nope. It isn't them.

It's the Cleveland Headquarters For Sportscasters, otherwise known as Gannett's WKYC/3, hiring yet another sports reporter.

He's Dave Chudowsky, who worked at Dispatch's Ohio News Network until his last day last week.

UPDATE 3:15 PM 7/23/07: Chudowsky's hiring has now been officially announced by WKYC. Read more at senior director Frank Macek's "Director's Cut" blog.

The item says Chudowsky is actually replacing sports reporter Brian Colleran, and also notes that new addition Joe Brown is anchoring weekend sports now. We don't know where Colleran is going, at this time.

Chudowsky is also a Northeast Ohio native, a graduate of Bay Village High School, who will be seen on the station where he interned in the late 1990's. He's also been spotted locally on SportsTime Ohio and on Bruce Drennan's "All Bets Are Off" show there.

Still in the mix - whoever replaces David Pingalore as reporter/weekend sports anchor at Raycom Media CBS affiliate WOIO/19 and sister MyNet outlet WUAB/43. We haven't kept track of the race to replace the former "19 Action News" sportscaster, who left to join an Orlando station.

Last we heard, station reporter Tony Zarella - who has a pretty decent sports background - was filling in...

CUMULUS MOVES: There's not much to say about it, but we felt the need to note the big news out of Cumulus Media.

The company is launching a $1-point-3 billion deal to go private, with the help of Cumulus CEO Lew Dickey and a Merrill Lynch private equity fund.

For the moment, it appears it may not have much effect on the stations. Mr. Dickey is fronting the effort, and there would appear - for now - to be no station sales triggered by the move, unlike Clear Channel's still-in-progress sale to two private equity firms.

Cumulus has clusters in Ohio in Youngstown, Toledo and Cincinnati. It swapped out Canton's WRQK/106.9 to Clear Channel, in order to take over that company's clusters in a number of Michigan cities...

WHAT ABOUT TK?: We haven't mentioned him much in OMW for some reason, but the host of three major syndicated radio shows based right here in Northeast Ohio is still figuring out his next move.

Tom Kent announced earlier this month in the trade press that he was quitting his three shows syndicated by TKO Radio Networks. We heard him doing one of the shows Sunday night on Clear Channel oldies WMJI/105.7, "Into the 70's", which reminded us of this situation.

AllAccess reported at the time that Kent "couldn't reach agreement" with other TKO Radio principals, and still retained an ownership stake in the syndication company.

The popular trade website then hinted a couple of weeks ago that Kent was "up to a lot", but couldn't say what, yet. We also have no idea if the show we heard Sunday night was new, or a repeat.

"TK" has been hosting that program, along with "Classic Top 40" and "Hall of Fame Coast to Coast" from a home studio in his basement, we believe somewhere in the Brecksville area. That's roughly a 10 minute drive down I-77 from Oak Tree...

FOX LIMA #1?: There's no doubt that WOHL-CA 25 "FOX Lima" owner Gregg Phipps has an uphill battle with the station, and his other local LPTV network affiliates in Lima, against established NBC full-power outlet WLIO/35 "NBC Lima".

He may have won a battle.

Station officials say WOHL has been awarded a "FOX #1 Club" honor from its network, due to, and we quote, "being the # 1 station in the Lima Market for the February and May television ratings sweeps during Primetime."

Ratings are a funny thing, so we're just taking them at their word for now.

"FOX Lima" does air many nationally-popular FOX shows, like "American Idol", "24", "House" and the like, and despite being an LPTV outlet, WOHL has had cable carriage for longer than any of Mr. Phipps' sister LPTV stations (WLQP/18 ABC, WLMO/38 and the like).

And considering Lima's small size as a market, even WOHL-CA's broadcast signal likely covers Lima and Allen County without much difficulty.

Though the station boasts that the FOX lead-in has increased viewership of "FOX 25 News at 10" some 200 percent, we'd have to figure that WLIO's news operation swamps the news airing on the LPTVers overall...


Anonymous said...

Phipps and The Blade both put on great newscasts on their stations for a small market such as Lima.

Its an honor for Phipps im sure, but it also doesnt help that LIO is an NBC affiliate which is ranked almost last in every primetime ranker.

Kudos to both for great operations in market #190

djl said...

Chud's a nice pickup for WKYC. He's a good guy who works his butt off. Darn good reporter too.

As for the Lima market, I don't have any hard numbers, but I suspect cable penetration would be abnormally high there. Until WOHL picked up their Fox affiliation, WLIO was the only network affiliate within 70 or so miles of downtown Lima. My in-laws in the Lima area get stations from Lima, Toledo, Columbus, Dayton, and Fort Wayne on their cable system.

Anonymous said...

I remember listening to Tom Kent on WGCL back in the day, was glad to hear him back on WMJI with his syndicated show. I think it was Kid Kelly hosting this last Sunday, was listening at work [but not to intently] and thought I heard his name and figured TK was on vacation.

Anonymous said...

Tom Kent was great when I first him in the 70s(TruckinTomCookinKent at WIBG in Philly) and still has the best syndicated "oldes" shows around.

Hope whatever happens we'll still be able to hear him on weekend nights

Anonymous said...

Mike Cairns has done some weekend work at 19 over the past few weeks, so he might want to get back in the game.

Why doesn't 5 just hire Andy Baskin (and Lorna Barrett for that matter) permanently, instead of keeping them hanging?

Both have done well as "fill ins" and should be allowed to become "official".

Anonymous said...

Lorna Barrett needs to be put in the evening she is too boring for morning TV. Put Danita back in the morning she is perfect. She is not overly annoying like Hollie. She is meant for mornings.

Anonymous said...

Any chance TK is on the way to CC?

collegedj86 said...

One other newsworthy item from this past weekend; Rubber City's 94.9 WQMX is now broadcasting in HD; I heard a few new stingers/liners promoting the upgrade starting either Friday or Saturday, and the digital hash that accompanies HD signals on regular digital tuning radios is now apparent. Since I don't have an HD radio, I don't know if they're multicasting or not. I've not yet heard the sidebands or any liners on sister 97.5 WONE-FM announcing HD.

Also, I agree with others that Baskin should be hired on full-time at WEWS. The few times I've watched him report during their newscast I've been impressed with his clean and professional delivery.

Anonymous said...

WQMX is not in HD from what I can tell. I live in Akron, can get all the Cleveland HD channels, and I have no HD signal on WQMX OR WONE.

Testing it maybe?

Anonymous said...

It's too bad that Brian Colleran is being let go. He's a decent young talent.

Anonymous said...

TK was on "Hall of Fame Coast to Coast" on WBBG last week. Tonight, its Justine Thomas.
So I'm guessing what you heard last night was the last show.

Hope he returns soon, he's a legend/genius/machine/icon/etc/etc

Anonymous said...

Regarding the term "HD" for radio...I wish it would stop. Please explain to me how audio can be HD? It only confuses the consumer. I saw a web site recently that listed the mis-use of the "HD" in marketing. Someone was selling HD counter tops.

nick said...

I researched HD radio and found out that HD is a brand name, it doesn't even mean high definition. I've heard high definition used on one station, which is a lie. The only thing kind of related to HDTV is there are subchannels.

Anonymous said...

There are no HD filings for WQMX on file with FCC.

So far in Akron its:
WAPS is scheduled for the winter/spring I believe.

Cleveland has
92.3 (call letters?)


Anonymous said...

92.3 (WKRI)
1260 (WWMK?)

nick said...


Anonymous said...

I hear Tom Kent is working with Mike McVay and Art Vuolo to land another syndicator.

Anonymous said...

Just read on Frank's Channel 3 blog that Dave Chudowsky replaces Brian Colleran on the sports team.

I wonder if Jim Donovan is really difficult to work with. Two of last year's hires gone with the more than the first half of the year.

Maybe Brian can land at either Channel 5 or Channel 19. (Channel 8 is booked solid)

ParkersburgGuyTom said...

What Frank did not print in his blog is that Chud's position is of the "one-man-band" variety. It's the first of it's kind in the Cleveland market. It's popping up in other markets - Denver just posted a similar position. Not sure how tight the union is at WKYC - but it's not a good trend. Essentially three jobs are being consolidating into one, arguably to the detriment of the overall journalism. The journalist must go out and shoot/report/edit under deadline.

Congrats to Chud - he's fully capable of doing the job (all sports guys start out one-man-banding in their careers). However, it's creeping up into mid-major markets.

Anonymous said...

Hey, congratulations, WKYC. You've just proved what a penny-pinching joke of a news operation you truly are. A one-man band in a top 20 market. Shameful. Kudos to Brooke Spectorsky...way to save the dough, man!

Anonymous said...

cmaChould Chud be the "backpack journalist" WKYC was looking for?

I think Brian Colleran should join Andy Baskin at WEWS. I bet that both men are happier not to be with Jim Donovan. They would boost WEWS' sports department.

Anonymous said...

what is all the hoopla about lanigan finding out about clear channel doing a phone survey asking if those who listen to wmji would still listen if lanigan was gone?

Anonymous said...

No Hoopla.
It's just part of the typical John Gorman vs. Clear Channel internet blog. He really should retitle the blog to "here's another reason I hate CC, not the least of which being, they won't give me a job"

Two weeks ago listeners starting calling Lanigan mentioning calls they recieved from "Radio Research" (the name Critical Mass Media uses makign blind calls) asking if they would listen to WMJI if Lanigan was not on WMJI.

The G-Man used it as another spring board to bash Clear Channel.

Funny thing is, Gorman forgot to mention this is a STANDARD question in any radio station perceptual. How important is host A, B or C? Would you listen without host A, B, or C.

Anonymous said...

Lanigan is only working to suppliment his Social Security.

Anonymous said...

Jim Donovan is a terrible play by play guy. I preferred when Casey Coleman Nev Chandler Jim Meuller and Gib Shanley did the Browns games. Jim Donovan is nothing to write home about doing sportscasts or Indians games either.

Blogger said...

Triv to mornings on NCX with double the pay

collegedj86 said...

I suppose I stand corrected on the WQMX in HD thing. I noticed today that those digital hash sidebands aren't there anymore. It must have merely been a test they ran on the weekend.

Thanks to the anonymouses who corrected me.

Anonymous said...

Gorman would not want to work for a company like Clear Channel that squanders quality and creativity instead of encouraging it. Did he not turn down an opportunity to work for CC recently? I also think it was a dumb move on Clear Channel's part to do such an obvious survey. It makes it clear that CC cannot even afford Lanigan because the bottom has dropped out of radio advertising. He has the numbers, his sales department cannot get the business. It is the same reason why WNCX went with MMM. Low budget morning show that can turn a meager profit. the last year Stern was on WNCX the profit margin was very very thin.

Anonymous said...

mcvay, voulo, kent? Lover's triangle? don't see this working for long.

Anonymous said...

To the commentor about Gorman's blog. What is wrong with him telling the truth? That is far from bashing and he does have a right to his personal comments and establishes that fact by doing it in a blog. He is obviously NOT looking for a job with Clear Channel so the person that made that statement can rest assure that his job at CC is safe.

Anonymous said...

I got a call. The question was "Do you listen to WMJI" not Lanigan. When I said "yes" then I heard the rest of it. What is Gorman's blog? I can't find it. I would like to see what he wrote and if the call he wrote about is like the one I received.

Anonymous said...

Any skuttlebutt on what happened to Allison Alexander. She wasn't bad and any ratings difficency should be credited to the news director not Allison. That traffic reporter they are trying to groom as a reporter and anchor is terrible!!!!!!!!!! She has to be a relative of someones. I can barely understand what she is saying.