June 30, 2010 8 Comments
UPDATE 7/1/10 10:13 PM: No, we haven’t signed LeBron James. We’re a few million, all of them, short of cap space, and LeBron wasn’t sure of our head coaching plans, though he liked the fact we’re in Northeast Ohio.
But seriously, thanks to Tim Feran at the Columbus Dispatch, we have some more details on this item, if not the NBA Free Agency Shuffle.
* WOSU Public Media is buying the 101.1 operation for
$4.8 million $5.7 million, $2.5 million $2.25 million (sorry, typo on our part) up front and the rest paid over 20 years, according to the latest version of Feran’s article and an earlier article in the alt-paper “The Other Paper”.
* WWCD will be “operating” 102.5, “in a partnership” with owner WHIZ Media Group (aka Zanesville’s Southeastern Ohio Broadcasting System). They’ll also move the FM rights to the NHL’s Columbus Blue Jackets to the new frequency. The AM rights are on the Dispatch’s own “The Fan on AM”, WBNS/1460. The WWCD deal presumably still prevents Dispatch from putting the NHL team on the FM side of “The Fan”, WBNS-FM/97.1.
* Feran characterizes the new NPR-laden 89.7 programming, when classical music moves to 101.1, as a simulcast with WOSU’s AM side at 820.
Our original item is below…
As it turns out, the recent flip of Clear Channel’s WRXS/106.7 “Radio 106.7” to 90s mix “Gen X Radio” is the quietest radio format news out of Columbus this week.
That’s because as your Primary Editorial Voice(tm) was actually in the Columbus market (for non-media reasons) on Wednesday, the announcements came fast and furious.
First, we learned from Ohio State University that the school’s WOSU Public Media operation is buying Fun With Radio LLC’s WWCD/101.1 Grove City, long-time home of the locally-owned “CD 101” alt-rock format.
Those who have been following the Mighty Blog of Fun(tm) weren’t surprised by the next move.
“CD 101” indeed confirmed the rumors, and the alt-rock format will move down the dial to the more powerful 102.5/Baltimore signal…with a simulcast of “CD 101” airing there starting at midnight tonight (Wednesday night/Thursday morning)…finally putting the poorly automated “Highway 102” country format somewhere on a computer in Zanesville out of its misery.
Thus, the “CD101at1025.com” domain name picked up earlier by Lance Venta and the RadioInsight net gnomes makes sense…the alt-rocker will be heard on both 101.1 and 102.5 until the fall.
That’s when the final shoe drops…when they take it over, Ohio State University will use 101.1 as a full-time classical music outlet, freeing up primary signal WOSU-FM/89.7 to become a full-time NPR news/talk station.
We presume it will sound much like WOSU(AM)/820 does now, which leaves open the question of what the WOSU folks will do with the AM signal in the fall.
There were no changes for us to observe in the few hours we were in Columbus.
102.5 won’t be flipping to the “CD 101” simulcast until midnight, though we heard an air personality on CD 101 this afternoon telling listeners to listen at midnight for a “very important event”. The air person didn’t give away the store, though the frequency change is on the CD 101 website.
As of yet, there are no FCC sales applications in the online database – either for the WWCD purchase by OSU, or for a WCVZ purchase by Fun With Radio. For that matter, we don’t know if Fun With Radio’s Roger Vaughan is buying WCVZ, or just leasing airtime or LMAing.
At “Gen X Radio”, we heard the early positioning, including one liner imploring listeners to “don’t tell a friend – they’ll find us on scan, anyway”, and promising music that meant something to the target listener’s life, even if they were wondering what they were thinking at the time.
As of mid-afternoon, they had not changed the WRXS calls to the coming WCGX, at least during the legal ID…