While Scott’s Shots continues to chronicle WEEI.com’s transformation from promotional arm of the talk radio powerhouse to bona fide sports portal, David Scott did uncover a particularly fascinating piece from WEEI’s Gerry Callahan, penned for the Boston Herald in August of 1991. Needless to say, the future 850 AM host wasn’t bullish on the future of the sports radio medium.
In a little less than a month, WEEI-AM will become the first all-sports station in the Boston radio market. The station is owned by the Celtics and already carries both Bruins™ and Celtics™ games during the winter. The rest of the air time will be filled with the occasional out-of-town or college game as well as a wide variety of talk shows and syndicated sports programs. Formerly the only all-news station in Boston, WEEI is now busy laying off everyone who doesn™t wear a baseball cap to work.
The Celtics somehow squeezed Eddie Andelman under their salary cap, so in the afternoon the station will feature the most established talk show host in the city. It is assuring to know that for at least a few hours a day the station will not be taking sports too seriously. Along with Eddie, Andy Moes will probably hold his own in the morning, and veterans such as Craig Mustard and Glenn Ordway will not embarrass themselves in their respective slots. Unlike WEEI under its present format, the station may soon be worth listening to even if a war hasn™t broken out in the last few minutes.
What about the other 10 or 12 hours a day? Will they hire generic hosts with cute nicknames who talk about hockey in the summer, subscribe to USA Today, and rate Bill James as their favorite author? Will they have same dozen callers who become close, personal friends with the host?