On September 6th 2017, Craig Carton was arrested on charges of conspiracy, wire and securities fraud. He resigned from WFAN soon after and went to federal trial beginning last week. Carton never took the stand during his case. Being quiet is something no one is used to when it comes to Craig, who never held back from criticizing a public figure for any wrongdoing.
While the jury’s decision on Craig shocked no one, Thursday morning at 6am on WFAN served as a coping mechanism for those on the Boomer and Gio show following Wednesday’s announcement of a guilty verdict.
Boomer admitted Wednesday was a “sad day of closure.” Esiason previously opted not to discuss the legal situation with his former partner in the last 14 months because he didn’t want to say anything that could affect or include him in the case.
Esiason was noticeably saddened while discussing the situation, stating “We love Craig, Craig was the light of this radio station for many of us.”
“Unfortunately yesterday was the lowest of lows for all of us that have been involved in this and we can only pray and hope that he and his family find solace in the fact that not at least it’s come to somewhat of an end,” said Boomer who then added, “There will be brighter days ahead somewhere along the line.”
Board-op Eddie Scozzare said he understands when people with an outside perspective of someone that commits a crime are happy about a conviction, but explained those that were close to Craig have a different viewpoint.
“Even though maybe it’s wrong, even though you know he’s been found guilty, we still hoped he got off, because that’s our perspective from the inside as opposed to the outside where people are happy about it,” said Scozzare.
Jerry Recco cited past conversations with his own father who said, “This can’t be, it doesn’t work this way,” referring to Carton’s gambling success. To which Jerry would respond, “but it is, you never saw him lose…you just thought he was good at it.”
“Every time we went out with him, Craig was the one who held court, Craig was the one who told the stories, Craig was the one that made you laugh and it never stopped. There was never ever this notion that something was wrong,” added Recco.
Producer Al Dukes made a similar statement, saying he only saw Craig win, he witnessed Carton succeed at blackjack and was unaware Craig was losing money especially because he was always the same fun, energetic personality. “He was not a bad person. I don’t think he set out to do any of these things,” said Dukes.
Esiason brought closure to the conversation saying, “At the end of the day you have to take a big deep breath and hope and pray that Craig gets through this next stage of it and when he is done with it, somehow, someway he can do something positive to help people deal with what the hell he has dealt with over the last 14 months because he has basically destroyed a lot of people in his wake and it’s really sad to watch how a gambling addiction can do that to you.”
After following what was made public of the case, it did not appear Carton’s defense team had much of an ability to argue his innocence. Maybe Carton couldn’t bring himself to admit guilt, or maybe he ignored the odds and went all in on one final gamble in a desperate attempt at returning to the life he lived 14 months ago.
A rather emotionless Carton left the courtroom telling reporters he was disappointed in the verdict, but respected the decision.
“I’m going to go home and hug my kids and let my lawyers deal with the rest of it,” Carton said.
“The rest of it,” will include an appeal, according to Carton’s defense team. Carton is currently scheduled to be sentenced on February 27th, 2019.
Whether his sentence is one year, two years, five, or ten, when Carton is free he will have offers and his need to have his voice heard, along with the audience’s need to hear him will find Carton on-air again, assuming he isn’t sentenced to the full 45 years that are on the table.
Jeff Rickard Named Program Director of WFNZ in Charlotte
“After our first conversation I knew Jeff was the one to take us to the next level.”
Jeff Rickard is headed to Charlotte. The sports radio veteran has been named the new program director of WFNZ, one of the Southeast’s premier sports radio brands.
Rickard replaces Terry Foxx who announced in February that he was leaving Charlotte to take over KUT in Austin.
“We are committed to making sports radio even bigger in Charlotte, adding the 92.7 FM signal in March was just the beginning of that commitment,” Marsha Landess, Regional Vice President of Radio One, said in a press release. “Having a successful veteran like Jeff Rickard join our team will help take us to the level that a passionate sports city like Charlotte deserves. Jeff brings to WFNZ extensive sports experience, talent, drive, and a passion for success. He will be a great complement to our incredibly talented local Charlotte on-air team. After our first conversation I knew he was the one to take us to the next level. As the flagship station for the Charlotte Hornets as well as Charlotte FC we are looking forward to an incredibly successful future with Jeff leading the charge.”
Rickard’s resume in sports radio speaks for itself. He was most recently the brand manager at WEEI in Boston, a role he exited in January. Prior to that, he spent six years at 107.5 The Fan in Indianapolis serving as both a weekday host and the station’s program director. He has also worked nationally for ESPN Radio, FOX Sports Radio, and SiriusXM, and spent time during the early part of his career working in Denver and Salt Lake City.
“I had been planning on taking a professional sabbatical this year but after meeting with Marsha Landess and learning more about Radio One, I began to get more excited to get back to work,” shared Rickard. “Radio One as a company, combined with Marsha’s leadership and the potential for WFNZ, was just too appealing to not be a part of. I am extremely grateful to Radio One for this opportunity and can’t wait to start working with the talented staff in Charlotte. My family and I are all in on this situation and can’t wait to get started on this new chapter.”
Not one to waste time diving in, Rickard officially stepped into the Charlotte offices today to meet his new staff.
Kirk Herbstriet Wants To Be Held To Same Standard For NFL As College Football
“Herbstreit was on The Pat McAfee Show on Friday and he said he is already at Pro Football Focus in Cincinnati doing his research.”
The NFL schedule was released last week, and Thursday Night Football has a lot of interesting matchups for its first year on Amazon Prime. It is also a new broadcast booth with Al Michaels and Kirk Herbstreit on the call.
With Herbstreit now adding Thursday Night Football to College Gameday, he has already started preparing for the upcoming season. Herbstreit was on The Pat McAfee Show on Friday and he said he is already at Pro Football Focus in Cincinnati doing his research.
“I’m just trying to lay a foundation,” said Herbstreit.
Herbstreit told McAfee that whenever anyone asks him to talk about a college team, he can quickly tell them what the DNA of that team is. Now he wants to bring that level of preparation to his NFL broadcasts. He will look at a different matchup every week this summer to get a more detailed idea of what each team is about:
As for his connection with Al Michaels, Herbstreit mentioned he has gone out to dinner with him a couple of times and he wants to make going out to eat with his broadcast partner a frequent deal.
“Hung out with him 2-3 times. Had a chance just to get to know him. When you go into a new deal, I love like Wednesday night dinner, I want to make a staple and just hang out and get to know him and hopefully he will get to know me. When you do that, it allows you to have natural chemistry.”
Andrew Mason To Succeed John Clayton At 104.3 The Fan
“Mason comes to The Fan from DNVR, a digital outlet where he provided written and audio content for the last three seasons.”
John Clayton passed away earlier this year. That left 104.3 The Fan without a lead Broncos writer for the 2022 season. On Monday, the station announced that it had hired a successor in Andrew Mason.
Mason comes to The Fan from DNVR, a digital outlet where he provided written and audio content for the last three seasons.
“Mase’s work speaks for itself as one of the market’s most respected analysts when it comes to writing about and discussing the Broncos,” Raj Sharan, The Fan’s program director, said in a press release. “Replacing someone of the legendary stature of John Clayton was not something we took lightly, and we believe Mase is the perfect person to pick up that mantle and bring tremendous credibility and content to our rapidly growing digital platforms.”
Andrew Mason has a lot of credibility with Broncos fans. He has covered the team for 19 years. He has also written a book called Tales from the Denver Broncos Sideline.
The Fan won’t be his first foray into Denver radio either. Mason has previously been a host on Mile High Sports Radio and the defunct KDSP- AM.
“I’m thrilled to join The Fan team and add what I can to the efforts of building Denver’s premier online destination for Denver fans,” said Mason. “Being tasked with replacing a legend like John Clayton is a responsibility I take very seriously, and I’m honored The Fan has entrusted me with this opportunity.”