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The Mighty 1090 Ceases Operations

“Well, it’s not pretty,” Kaplan responded when asked to describe the scene when management let him know the station was no longer in operation.

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Two weeks after losing their spot on the AM dial, The Mighty 1090 has fully ceased operations. Mid day host Darren Smith tweeted that management at 1090’s parent company, the Broadcast Company of the Americas, pulled the plug on the station’s stream in the middle of his show on Monday.

When reached via text Smith told Barrett Sports Media that he wouldn’t describe the shutdown as a surprise necessarily. “My best guess was that Monday was the final day and we’d be told of our shutdown on Tuesday morning.”

Emotions of the Mighty 1090 staff were on full display in a Twitter video on Scott Kaplan’s account.

“For the last two weeks, Mighty 1090 programming has only been available online and through our mobile app,” a message on The Mighty 1090’s website reads. “We can’t thank you enough for bearing with us through this ordeal. Unfortunately, we have ceased operations. We are forever grateful for your passion, loyalty, and all your support over the years.”

“Well, it’s not pretty,” Kaplan responded when asked to describe the scene when management let him know the station was no longer in operation.

Darren Smith echoed the disappointment. “It’s brutal,” he said in a text. “Change is inevitable in the biz and we all know that but this is just wrong.”

In a three part message on Twitter morning man Ben Higgins expressed his disappointment and then took time to celebrate what he and his co-workers had created.

https://twitter.com/BenHigginsSD/status/1122990664809996290

As for next steps, Smith told BSM that while he was focused on making the streaming station a success, he was always aware that this could be The Mighty 1090’s ultimate fate.

“Personally, I’ve thought about health insurance and preparing financially for loss of income.  How long can I survive in San Diego without income?  I’ve had those talks with my wife and advisor for months.  

“Professionally, what decisions might I have to make – stay local or look out of market?  Talk radio or something different entirely?  Stay in sports or a different media field?  

“I hoped we’d have a different endgame but wasn’t naive about the reality.”  

Kaplan said he was focused on making the company a success in the streaming space. “I believe we have a winning team and can have a real digital business,” he said in a text.

He has also been working on putting together a group of investors to purchase Mighty 1090. Kaplan said that effort is not dead. He told Barrett Sports Media that he intends to present a letter of intent to take over operation of the station on Wednesday.

Barrett Sports Media will bring you more on this story as it develops.

UPDATE (4/30 @ 9:57 AM)

Scott Kaplan tweeted this morning that there is a meeting scheduled for 11 AM. There he plans to unveil his plan for taking over the station.

Fans of Mighty 1090 responded to the Tweet with excitement. Kaplan then singled out San Diego Union-Tribune business reporter Lori Weisberg in a Tweet alluding to her interest in the meeting.

UPDATE (4/30 @ 4:11 PM)

Scott Kaplan’s Twitter feed hosted a live video earlier today at noon Pacific time. Many 1090 staffers expressed their frustration and disappointment after leaving a meeting with management where they were told that the station is shutting down.

Craig Elsten accused GM Mike Glickenhaus of hiding from his staff during the meeting where they were informed that the station was officially out of business. It is similar to a remark he made on Twitter earlier in the day.

Kaplan himself reiterated that his goal is to keep this team together. How quickly that happens remains to be seen. Several hosts apparently told Kaplan they need a break before resuming their broadcasting duties.

“Sponsors have said ‘we will stay with you,'” Kaplan could be overhead telling one off-screen co-worker. He claims to have a broadcast space ready to go, and will be doing his afternoon show from there today beginning at 3pm Pacific.

As for reactions to the news, they varied widely. Kaplan noted that the staff “did not let 1090 die. 1090 died as a result of a big, cancerous tumor in the office down there.” It was clear he was talking about management, but he did not say who specifically.

Linda Welby, who was part of Kaplan’s afternoon show took the high road. She described herself as “sad, but not mad,” offering a very matter of fact assessment of the situation. “This is radio and that’s how it goes.”

Sports Radio News

Kay Adams Gives Pat McAfee Backhanded Compliment On Interviewing Aaron Rodgers

“There is nothing — literally nothing — that he hasn’t gone over with you.”

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@PatMcAfeeShow on Twitter

Besides ESPN’s “ManningCast” for Monday Night Football, a top candidate for best sports media story of the 2021 NFL season is The Pat McAfee Show.

The former NFL punter’s show on YouTube, SiriusXM, and podcasts has become a cultural sensation for its interviews with Aaron Rodgers that revealed the Green Bay Packers quarterback’s controversial stance on taking the COVID-19 vaccine.

McAfee has been criticized in media circles for letting Rodgers say whatever he wants in extended monologues without ever challenging his assertions or asking follow-up questions in response to a particular opinion. But the wide range of topics and in-depth answers have made McAfee’s Tuesday conversations with Rodgers must-watch video.

However, those interviews haven’t left much for other reporters and on-air personalities to cover when talking to Rodgers. Good Morning Football co-host Kay Adams raised this issue with McAfee during a Monday appearance on the show.

“You’ve ruined interviewing Aaron Rodgers,” said Adams. “Do you know that?”

McAfee understandably disagreed, saying he feels “it’s been good” because they have a conversation rather than question-and-answer, question-and-answer. Adams then explained that she had a seven-to-10-minute interview with Rodgers last week, but had nothing new to ask him because he already covered everything with McAfee.

“There is nothing — literally nothing — that he hasn’t gone over with you,” Adams complained, saying McAfee and his hour-long conversations has made it impossible for networks to interview Rodgers now.

Though Adams appeared to be annoyed, she did praise McAfee for getting Rodgers to reveal a side of himself that he previously kept private, something the public never saw before.

“He’s never been an open book, but you’ve really let us get to know his character,” said Adams, “and who he is as a human, his kindness, his vulnerabiity. It’s transcendental; seriously, it’s awesome.”

Thanks for doing such a good job that it’s difficult for everybody else, Pat McAfee? That seemed to be what Adams meant.

Yet despite that apparent frustration, she surely knows that the people who saw her interview with Rodgers may not watch McAfee’s show. And it’s entirely possible that someone may answer a question differently, depending on who’s asking and the outlet being represented. Of course, it always feels good as an interviewer to ask a question that hasn’t been posed before and get the subject to think about something he or she may not have previously considered.

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Sports Radio News

Colin Dunlap: ‘No One More Underqualified’ Than Jac Collinsworth

“How did they allow that level of nepotism to happen?”

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NBC Sports Pressbox

NBC had two NFL Wild Card playoff telecasts this past weekend, but the network’s pre- and post-game show did not impress 93.7 The Fan’s Colin Dunlap and Chris Mack. The hosts singled out Football Night in America co-host Jac Collinsworth as a big problem with NBC’s studio coverage.

“There is no one more underqualified or worse at their job than the young Collinsworth, who is stunningly bad on television,” said Dunlap.

What particularly irritates Dunlap is that Collinsworth holds such a high-profile job on Football Night in America, one that so many in the sports broadcasting industry covet.

“It is a premier job, NBC Sunday Night Football in America, he is one of the hosts there, he’s throwing it to Drew Brees, he’s doing all this stuff,” Dunlap added. “And I know he’s part of the jokey element, the non-serious sports guy on there.”

As Dunlap wondered how Jac Collinsworth got his job, Mack asked the question more directly.

“How did they allow that level of nepotism to happen?”

The two then went on to criticize the entire NBC studio crew, saying everyone is miscast in their current roles.

“Tony Dungy should be interviewing people about introspective life things,” said Dunlap. “He should be doing sit-downs. People will open up to Tony Dungy because they trust him, especially football coaches.”

In Dunlap’s view, NBC made a mistake by not hiring reporter Tom Rinaldi to do the features for which he’s known. (Rinaldi left ESPN for Fox Sports at the end of 2020.) Mack added that the network has an opportunity to remake its NFL coverage with sideline reporter Michele Tafoya moving on after this season and play-by-play announcer Al Michaels believed to be headed to Amazon’s Thursday Night Football.

Prospective names that the duo suggested adding to Football Night in America to freshen up up the mix include ESPN’s Robert Griffin III (who Dunlap says “could be the next big star”), NFL Network’s Joe Thomas, and Good Morning Football’s Kyle Brandt.

You can listen to the full segment at the 93.7 The Fan website or the Audacy app.

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Sports Radio News

Chicago Legend, 670 The Score Overnighter Les Grobstein Dies

“Grobstein’s presence in the Chicago sports media far predates his time on The Score.”

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The Athletic

Les Grobstein was a staple in the lives of Chicago sports fans. He had held down overnights at 670 The Score since 2009. He was found dead in his home on Sunday. He was 69 years old.

“Our staff is devastated. Our audience lost a great friend overnight,” Mitch Rosen, The Score’s operations director, said in a statement. “Les was a legend that will never be forgotten. He was a best friend to so many that knew him that he never knew. That’s the power of radio.”

Grobstein’s presence in the Chicago sports media far predates his time on The Score. He began his broadcasting career in 1970 as part of Northwestern basketball broadcasts. He also served as the sports director of WLS and a reporter for ESPN 1000 before joining The Score.

The longtime Chicago sports radio personality had not been on the air recently. The only explanation given was an illness.

The Score memorialized The Grobber on Monday. The station played a loop of some of his most memorable moments multiple times during the day. Mark Grote called Grobstein “a friend, a colleague, and a classic” and noted that it was hard to figure out exactly the right way to memorialize him because he was such a unique individual.

Grote clearly did something right. Grobber’s son Scott texted the station to say that he was laughing at all of the clips and memories of his dad that the station was sharing.

In addition to Scott, Les Grobstein is survived by his long time partner Kathy.

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