The Really Big Fallout

OK, we’ll run out of “really big” titles at some point.

More on Friday’s bombshell at the Galleria, and since we’re now getting complaints about our verbosity, we’ll save the other stuff for a later update.

A reminder: if you don’t like our writing or the length of our posts, feel free to file for a refund of every penny you’ve paid us to read OMW.

All of the rumors and speculation this past week, much of it fueled by a Facebook update by Clear Channel talk WTAM/1100’s Mike Trivisonno, centered around a possible move of Good Karma sports WKNR/850 “ESPN 850″‘s Tony Rizzo from middays to afternoon drive.

Though we certainly speculated on what the Triv vs. Rizzo battle could be like, we also cautioned in this space – before Friday’s announcement – that we hadn’t heard Rumor One about such a move either directly or indirectly out of the Galleria.

Skepticism turned out to be an accurate feeling on our part, with the big announcement being not a Rizzo move, but an hour expansion.

And instead of talking about Rizzo’s chances against Triv, that collision with popular Premiere host Jim Rome has become the focus of the announcement…with Rome shuttled off to a station we’re fairly sure you can hear on parts of Euclid Avenue, WWGK/1540 “KNR2”.

What happened?

Well, if you hear Triv tell the tale – or whoever posted a more recent update to his Facebook and Twitter presence – Rizzo blinked.

Here’s the show’s most recent series of updates. We’ll once again assume that the ALL UPPER CASE ones are from the host himself, particularly the last one:

We thought Tony Rizzo was dumb when we heard he would go to afternoon drive. Now we know he is just afraid.



It sounds, to us, that Triv is trying to ignite an old-fashioned radio war that never actually happened.

We know the rumors of Rizzo moving to afternoon drive have been out there, so they presumably filtered over to Oak Tree at some point.

We ignored them entirely, until that Triv Facebook/Twitter update.

(Again, the show’s Facebook status updates are automatically copied to the “TheTrivShow” Twitter account, much like our own updates are posted on both services.)

We’re not at all sure that Rizzo/WKNR “blinked”, since as noted, we were not directly hearing the “Rizzo to PM drive” rumors, just hearing from people asking about them.

Instead of a “Triv vs. Rizzo” battle, the focus, after the announcement did happen, turned to the exile of the first hour of Premiere’s Jim Rome to what we called “Radio Siberia”, Good Karma “brother” sports station WWGK/1540 “KNR2”. (And no, we’re not calling it “brother” because Mark “Munch” Bishop has a new 2 hour show on the lesser station.)

Several readers are wondering if Clear Channel rock/talk WMMS/100.7 would pry Rome’s show from WKNR…the station has seen success with young male skewing talk, Rome would fit well between “Rover’s Morning Glory” and “The Alan Cox Show”, and Premiere parent Clear Channel owns WMMS.

We would expect that a number of dominoes would have to fall for that to happen, and we don’t see any of those dominoes wobbling right now.

The first one would presumably be a clause in the contract giving Premiere the right to pull Rome from WKNR if he doesn’t air live for all three hours on the big 850 signal, but we would think Good Karma’s Craig Karmazin doesn’t make the move he made Friday if there is such a clause.

So, speculate all you want about what Clear Channel (either at Oak Tree or at the Premiere level) does next. For right now, the reality on Monday is that Jim Rome will not be heard on WKNR at 12 noon for the first time in years – originally on 1220, then on 850 – and will be heard on a station that serves part of Cleveland’s East Side that used to play gospel music.

Speaking of alternatives to WWGK for the first hour of Rome: our friends at South Avenue have checked in to remind us that some Cleveland area listeners may have another option, Clear Channel sports WNIO/1390 Youngstown “The Sports Animal” – one of Rome’s more recent affiliates.

Over at Clear Channel sports WARF/1350 “Fox Sports 1350” in Akron, the station is trumpeting its live carriage of Rome all over the place, including on its website, where this banner was spotted early Friday afternoon…

OMW hears that the banner’s “Hear The Whole F’In Show” wording was not “toned down” – a similar banner appears on WARF’s website now – but that it was reworked for layout issues.

And back at the Galleria, we have to give props to the embattled Craig Karmazin, who is getting flack from Jim Rome fans.

He’s signed up to take more direct flack from listeners on his “Ask The Owner” show, to be heard this coming Tuesday from 3-4 PM on “ESPN 850”. Very few station owners or managers would do that, though maybe he’s hoping the angry mobs of Rome fans will calm down by Tuesday…


10 Responses to The Really Big Fallout

  1. Yekimi says:

    I don’t care if you write a novel [well, I prefer it to be a short story] as long as the info of what’s going on gets out there. Guess everyone wants everything “Twitterized” nowadays.

  2. Yekimi says:


    He’s certainly the biggest guy that has ever hit the airwaves.

  3. Fletch5150 says:

    I am sure this could be different now, but back around 1999/2000, there was a 90 day out for either WKNR or Rome. Either could exercise at any time as long as they gave the other that 90 day notice.

  4. Joe says:

    I just don’t see any way that this works out well for WKNR and I can’t believe that Rizzo leaving FOX8 for a “major radio change” is simply adding an hour in mid-day. Maybe I’m missing something but none of it makes sense.

  5. Joe says:

    Here’s the thing. Rizzo is very entertaining. Aaron Goldhammer – not so much! Rizz does DAILY video rants on the WKNR website and is pretty damn funny. Aaron needs to change and stop his: OSU BASHING, HANGING UP ON CALLERS AFTER RUSHING THROUGH THEM AND ACTING LIKE HE IS DOING US ALL A FAVOR EVEN TAKING SOME CALLS, TAKING THE OPPOSITE VIEW OF MOST CLEVELANDERS, TELLING US HOW EVERY 25 YEAR OLD NATIVE OF CLEVELAND MOVES AWAY AT THAT AGE, ETC.

    I love how they were talking about how people can switch back and forth between 850AM & 1540AM while Rizz competes with Rome for that hour. Aaron even said they adjusted the times they are going to play their commercials – I bet the folks that advertise with them love that! What a JOKE!!!!!!!!

    Lastly, let’s not forget about the “hall of famer” Greg “BACON” Brinda. Talk about a washed up, face for radio, LOSER!!! He has become the designated mop up host on the station and does things like ripping on their own interns because they work for no money. Any cash they are paying that loser is way too much!

  6. axel f says:

    Re: your “reminder” about the “free-ness” of your site. Here’s two cents worth of free advice then: the true greats let criticism roll off their backs — they don’t give the bastards the satisfaction of acknowledging it.

  7. Sportin a NEW show says:

    “Speaking of alternatives to WWGK for the first hour of Rome: our friends at South Avenue have checked in to remind us that some Cleveland area listeners may have another option …”

    I’ll say … It’s Brian Fowler & Greg Kozarik talking local Cleveland sports on
    The Digital Sports Network weekdays from 9AM – Noon. And their audience is GROWING.
    And from noon – 2pm, it’s Les Levine & Bud Shaw (of the PD). No signal problems either.
    Check it out.

    • We don’t sell ads at this time, and will let this go, but…in the future, what appears to be advertising content will not be posted. “I like these shows”, fine. “Complete details on these shows and claims about their audience” is a thinly-veiled ad. And that applies to both broadcast programs and shows on Internet streams.

    • MrCleaveland says:

      The Bud Shaw and Les Levine show on DSN is terrific. It is so nice to hear knowledgeable guys discuss sports in a funny and entertaining way without shouting and while behaving like grown-ups. It’s the best two hours in “radio.”

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