Indirect Link

Here’s one item with an indirect link to Ohio radio, and also, the latest entry in our “FM News/Talk/Sports Watch”.

CBS Radio has launched yet another once-traditionally-AM spoken word format on FM in a mid-Atlantic market, though it replaces an existing spoken word format.

CBS’ FM talker in Baltimore, WHFS/105.7 “Free FM”, was blown up today in favor of a locally-programmed FM sports talk station known as “Sports Radio 105.7 The Fan”.

The move brings the Charm City its FOURTH full-time sports talker, with CBS Radio sister WJFK/1300 “ESPN 1300” hanging onto a full schedule of ESPN Radio network sports talkers while 105.7 goes local.

The 1300/105.7 combo takes the WJZ(AM)/WJZ-FM calls brought over from CBS-owned sister TV station WJZ-TV/13.

CBS made a similar move in Detroit not that long ago, blowing up that city’s long-running young-skewing FM talker, WKRK/97.1, for a new FM home for sports talk WXYT/1270. (Of course, the WKRK calls eventually landed here in Cleveland, on CBS sister alt-rocker “92.3 K-Rock”.)

Aside from another entry in our “FM News/Talk/Sports Watch”, there’s a connection to Ohio radio here as well.

The now-defunct WHFS once featured a midday talk show by Baltimore radio veteran Brian Wilson, better known in this cyber neighborhood as the program director and afternoon drive host at Clear Channel talk WSPD/1370 Toledo.

Wilson visited Baltimore on occasion, but did most of his shows for the Maryland station via ISDN from the Clear Channel Toledo complex.

The change today makes his decision to move on from the station look pretty smart, as he’d likely have been jettisoned from the WHFS schedule if he stuck around. Assuming, of course, that his continued presence wouldn’t have kept the station in the talk format.

But as it is now, there was only one survivor in the format change – former Baltimore police commissioner Ed Norris moves his popular afternoon drive show intact to mornings in the new “Fan” (otherwise) sports talk format.

Pittsburgh-based Mike Pintek, who picked up the noon-3 PM fill-in on WHFS (remember, Wilson’s stint was characterized as a long-term fill-in), is also out with the format change…

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