Before Boomer and Carton, long before Carton and Roberts, the sports radio shock jock had an opportunity presented to him that likely would have negated his WFAN tenure. During last Friday’s celebratory show for morning producer Al Dukes, Craig Carton said he was offered the job to replace Howard Stern when the King of all Media moved to satellite.
Stern’s affiliates were split between a few hosts nationwide, but the most infamous one was Van Halen singer David Lee Roth, whose show filled stations in New York, Boston, Cleveland, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Dallas and South Florida. Popular radio disc jockey Rover replaced Stern in the Midwest and comedian Adam Carolla took over a few West Coast markets.
A lot of names were discussed to replace Stern at the time, including Jon Stewart and Whoopi Goldberg, but Carton said the opportunity was his and he wanted it. Carton, who was hosting at NJ 101.5, would have been given Roth’s East Coast affiliates.
NJ 101.5 was owned by Millennium Radio Group at the time and Carton remembered discussing the Stern deal with them saying, “if there’s anything you’re going to do to stop this, you gotta tell me now because I represented that you’re letting me go.” Carton said the company gave him the go ahead.
He described it as a done deal, Craig Carton was going to replace Howard Stern. But on his way home from receiving the offer, Carton got an angry phone call. CBS Radio CEO Joel Hollander just received a fax saying, ‘if you want to hire Craig Carton, you have to give us [‘X’ amount of dollars].” Just like that, Carton was out, and Roth was soon to be in.
Roth’s show was an epic failure, barely lasting three months. But taking over for Stern was a seemingly impossible task with unrealistic expectations, defining the sentiment that it’s always better to be the individual replacing the person who replaced the legend.
When Carton told his now WFAN co-host Evan Roberts and update anchor Chris Lopresti the story, he spoke as if it was an obvious decision to want the opportunity to replace Stern, “why wouldn’t I?” he asked. Lopresti pushed back a bit, noting it probably would have ended poorly, but Carton said, “you didn’t see the check.”
Less than two years later, Carton was back in discussions with CBS Radio about replacing a morning legend. This time, it was Stern’s rival Don Imus. Carton’s contract with NJ 101.5 was now closer to expiring and he made it clear he would never sign with them again, making him available to join CBS and WFAN to replace Imus.
Mad Dog: Gus Johnson ‘Bothered The Hell Out of Me’ Saturday
“For crying out loud, Michigan/Ohio State isn’t even better than North Carolina/Duke, who play twice a year. So let’s be careful with the hype machine.”
FOX Sports college football voice Gus Johnson has made no bones about his affinity for Ohio State wide receiver Marvin Harrison Jr. However, Chris “Mad Dog” Russo has heard enough.
During his Mad Dog Unleashed program on SiriusXM, Russo shared that not only was Johnson obnoxious for the constant use of a nickname he bestowed up Harrison, but he was also misguided for calling Ohio State/Michigan the greatest rivalry in sports.
“Gus Johnson — the hype machine that he is — please, when you broadcast a ballgame, I don’t need to hear about Maserati Marv, number one. And number two, that’s not the greatest rivalry in sports history. Have you heard of the Yankees and the Red Sox? Giants and the Dodgers? How about Bears/Packers? Have you heard about that?
“For crying out loud, Michigan/Ohio State isn’t even better than North Carolina/Duke, who play twice a year. So let’s be careful with the hype machine. That bothered the hell out of me.”
When a caller pushed back on Russo’s opinion on the Michigan/Ohio State rivalry, he continued by saying “That rivalry’s not Yankees/Red Sox. To compare college football to the Yankees and the Red Sox is ludicrous.”
Nashville Predators Radio Voice Pete Weber Calling 2,000th Game Tuesday
“I always wanted to be there for the birth of a team. I feel like I’ve been a pretty fair midwife here.”
Nashville Predators radio voice Pete Weber is set to hit a career milestone Tuesday, as he’ll call his 2,000th game for the NHL franchise.
Weber told The Tennessean that he has relished the opportunity to be the voice of a team since its inception. He claimed he applied for and was a finalist for the radio play-by-play job when the Carolina Panthers were conceived, before ultimately landing with the Predators.
“I always wanted to be there for the birth of a team,” said Weber. “I feel like I’ve been a pretty fair midwife here.”
Despite missing time late last season due to a rare brain condition, Weber said he has no plans of retiring anytime soon.
“I have not thought about it, other than when I thought about how (former Philadelphia Phillies announcer) Harry Kalas was carried dead out of the broadcast booth in Washington,” Pete Weber said. “I thought, ‘Well, that’s an interesting way to go. I don’t necessarily know that I want to do it like that. But it could happen. I’m not going to say no.”
Weber’s 2,000th game will come as the Nashville Predators play host to the Pittsburgh Penguins. 102.5 The Game is the flagship home of the Predators Radio Network.
iHeartMedia Ending WEEI Simulcast in Cape Cod
A job opening for a sports talk co-host/producer/programming assistant that says its salary will “be funded by the savings that the market is acquiring from the expiring Audacy/WEEI & Red Sox contracts”.
iHeartMedia is preparing to drop its simulcast of WEEI on its 96.3 WEII-FM signal in Hyannis/Cape Cod.
According to a report from Radio Insight, iHeartMedia has posted a job opening for a sports talk co-host/producer/programming assistant that says its salary will “be funded by the savings that the market is acquiring from the expiring Audacy/WEEI & Red Sox contracts”.
It goes on to state that the contract between the company and Audacy was $300,000 annually and it paid the Red Sox $65,000 annually.
The job posting alleges 96.3 FM will continue to carry sports programming with a local show.
WEEI is currently simulcast on stations in Springfield and Worcester, MA; Providence; Portland, Maine; and on stations in New Hampshire and Vermont, as well. Earlier this year, the station’s offices in Warwick, Rhode Island closed as part of a cost-cutting measure.
WEII-FM is licensed to Dennis, MA and features a 25,000-watt Class B signal.