Another Weekend Update

And no, still without Chevy Chase…

MORE WHBC STUFF: Our sources have provided more clarification on the immediate future of NextMedia oldies-to-talk WHBC/1480 Canton, though there are still unanswered questions.

We’re told that you may or may not hear Brady Russell doing full-fledged talk radio starting Monday in WHBC’s afternoon drive slot, occupied until this past week by 20-year station vet Brice Lewis. And we’re not sure he actually starts in the time slot as early as Monday.

We get the impression from more than one source that the “full-on” start of WHBC’s new talk direction may happen on April 2nd, when the station starts carrying Westwood One syndicated talker Dennis Miller.

Anyway, what you hear out of 1480 on Monday afternoon…we’re not sure what it will be, or if Mr. Russell will be on the air playing music, taking calls or whatever. It sounds to us like April 2nd is the “launch” for talk on WHBC.

OMW has also heard that midday host Tom Jarrett will NOT be doing the 10 AM-noon talk slot. Though we understand it may not be finalized as yet, we’re told there could be an “unusual” local talk show host in that time period between the station’s morning show with Fred Chenevey and Pam Cook, and the syndicated Dennis Miller show.

We’d give you a name, but we don’t know who it is. No, literally…we don’t.

It is not, as far as we know, an existing WHBC personality – so that would rule out, for example, a weekday gig for station weekend host Jim Albright, better known for his lengthy stint as the host of WNIR/100.1’s popular “Dating Show” before he left radio to run promotions for the Carousel Dinner Theatre.

We hear Mr. Jarrett is not headed for the unemployment line, at least for now, as he’ll continue behind the scenes.

We also haven’t heard any more about what 1480 will do in evenings – surrounding the various sports events the station runs. We’d put money on a syndicated sports network…but don’t know if they’ve found one. ESPN Radio is out in the market unless they swipe it from WTIG/990 Massillon, for example…

AND ANOTHER REGULAR COUNTRY HEARD FROM: There isn’t much more to say about Good Karma sports WKNR/850, but we did catch some of Chuck Booms in the “Saturday Morning Sports Show” rotation.

While it’s never been clear if the 9 AM-noon Saturday slot on “ESPN 850 WKNR” has been an audition slot, or just a place the station can run some market names having fun on a Saturday, we’re guessing Booms considered it an active audition.

Not only has the former FOX Sports Radio host all but moved in with WKNR afternoon drive host Kenny Roda, who joined the Saturday show in advance of his own Ohio State basketball local pre-game show, but he made veiled references to what we interpreted as his desire to do it regularly.

We don’t say “all but moved in” lightly.

Roda said on the air that Booms has been a frequent off-air caller to him, not to mention his appearances on Roda’s “Happy Hour” show. He joked that Booms had even taken to leaving 10 minute “rants” on Roda’s voicemail. It indeed sounds like the former co-host of FSR’s “Kiley and Booms” has done everything but camp on Roda’s doorstep.

Umm, OK.

(And yes, Mr. Booms sounds to us more like the above mentioned Dennis Miller than we remember from his earlier days doing sports talk radio.)

We unearth a thought we brought up a while ago. At some point, does Good Karma use Booms as part of a two-person show, maybe even pairing him with Roda?

We caution that we have not even heard a faint rumor about such a pairing.

We just bring up our thought that WKNR would like at least one two-person show on the air. ESPN Radio’s “Mike and Mike” covers some of that, but…well…Booms is not really our cup of tea, radio-listening-wise, but he may be appealing to the station.

Again, there is no news or even rumor about this. It’s just a random thought…an educated “prediction”, as it were…but some of these musings have turned to reality, even if they’re given by us long before they’re even rumored…

I LOOOOOVE YA, STO!: The rumblings that SportsTime Ohio and former WKNR morning personality Bruce Drennan are talking about a new TV talk show have turned into shouts.

The Akron Beacon Journal’s George M. Thomas has been driving this bus, first reporting a while back that Drennan and STO were talking about a new show – we believe a weekday afternoon show was in the discussion.

Now, STO boss Jim Liberatore is openly talking about the channel’s interest in Drennan, and Thomas reports that Liberatore and Drennan met to talk about it this week.

From this, it sounds like Mr. Liberatore is darn near gushing about Drennan:

“It went well. He’s got some good ideas and obviously he’s a pro,” Liberatore said. “He shares our passion for connecting with local fans. He understands this is a new opportunity, kind of a new life for him.”

That would be a “new life” after a stint in a West Virginia federal pen, where the sports talker did time on tax fraud charges related to his betting on sports.

Thomas reports that the negotiations are “ongoing” with Drennan, though it would appear from the above quote that the question about Drennan on STO is “when and how” as opposed to “if”.

And maybe “where”, as Bruce is now serving five months on house arrest as a result of his conviction. It does seem likely that he’d be able to get a permit to work away from home, though.

Though we also have expressed that we’re not exactly big Drennan fans, it’s easy to see the interest from the SportsTime Ohio folks.

For better or for worse, Drennan is a sports talk “name” in this market, and STO is in desperate need of more local programming to fill out its schedule. You can only run those local wrestling and poker shows, and repeats of old games, so many times.

To that end, Thomas also tells about now-former WKYC/3 sports anchor Andy Baskin and his new “Over the Falls” production company, which will produce – on an independent basis – shows like “Totally Tribe” for STO.

And STO is apparently launching a local version of ESPN’s old “Dream Job” show, offering a would-be sportscaster a six month gig…

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