Thursday, August 2, 2007



Raleigh — WCMC-FM will change its format this fall from country music to sports-talk.

The station, which has been known as 99.9 Genuine Country, picked up the radio rights to Carolina Hurricanes games in June.

Officials with station owner Capitol Broadcasting Co., said the move is part of an effort to consolidate Capitol's sports interests. Sister station WRAL-FM also recently picked up the radio rights to North Carolina State University football and basketball games.

WCMC will become part of Capitol's sports division, which also includes the Durham Bulls baseball team. The station's studio will eventually move to WRAL-TV so television, radio and online sports coverage are located together, officials said.

And from the News and Observer

...George Habel, Capitol's vice president for radio networks and sports, said that although Capitol was committed to the move, there was no timeline for changing WCMC's format from "Genuine Country" to sports radio.

Habel said the station intends to have local programming during the morning and afternoon drive periods and will have a heavy focus on sports news reporting.

"We will be very information-intensive, keeping with what we do on TV and the Web," Habel said."There will be plenty of opinion, but we will cover sports news with an intensity we haven't seen in radio in this market."

Job listings seeking a general manager, program director, promotions director, hosts, reporters, producers and account executives are posted on Capitol Broadcasting's web site. Full Story...

Should have seen this one coming once Capitol Broadcasting picked up the rights to NC State and the 'Canes. Just wonder what they are going to use for programming. I am sure ESPN radio would love to have a FM affiliate in the Triangle, but 620 and 850 currently have the ESPN rights.

While I like WRAL's sports staff, there is a note of caution should they find their way over to the radio station. Does anyone remember when WTVD's former sports director, Drew Smith, hosted Sports Saturday on 850 the Buzz? Well, he sucked. The generalization is that since local TV sports guys only work in 30 sec sound bites, they have trouble with sports talk formats.

Does anyone remember what former WRAL reporter is now at ESPN?


Ken White said...

You got me stumped.

Now I'm wondering, how much sports talk can we really take? No way all 3 of these stations go 24x7 sports and survive.

Anonymous said...

Here's a hint.
He's an '83 RJR grad, and I think an '87 UNC grad.

Ken White said...

OK, really had to work on this one. Had no idea Stuart went to Reynolds. Did you know him?

Was a couple of years behind us, but do you remember a young geek named Ben Folds while you were there?

Ken White said...

So, what does this whole thing mean to Dave Glenn, who blogs for WRAL, but hosts for Buzz?

Anonymous said...

Stuart Scott

Anonymous said...

Indeed it was Stuart Scott.

He started as a reporter at WRAL and then went to a smaller station to do sports. If memory serves me correctly, he joined ESPN when they launched ESPN2.

Back at RJR, he was our starting WR on the football team (we sucked) and one of the leaders of the senior class, very popular and extremely nice. When we had our 20 year reunion in ’03 he was still the same guy… very gracious. Seems like a lot of his on air stuff is just an act.

Ben Folds was a year behind me. I remember the face, but I don’t remember anything about him… looked pretty geeky in his junior picture. If you know the story behind the hit song “Brick” and look at his school picture, you sort of have to say he’s got to be kidding.

Anonymous said...

Updated the post to include today’s N&O article.

The status of Dave Glenn’s blog is going to depend on the contract if there is one. (remember DG is a lawyer) Another thing to keep in mind is any non-complete clauses that the on-air staff at the Bull and the Buzz may have.

If you read the full N&O article, the folks at 620 and 850 say they have ESPN and Fox Sports contracts. I wonder if ESPN has an escape clause that allows them to shift to an FM station?

No way a sports-news format can work given the other sports stations in the market. Ever watch ESPN news for more than a half-hour?

They’re hiring… you want a new job?

Ken White said...

One thing that you have to think will come is more and more regional, syndicated shows like Mark Packer's show out of Charlotte. Not sure if you ever heard Conference Call that was running on 620 at 6pm in the evenings a year or so ago. The show was fair, but the idea is sound. I know in SEC country there are several SEC-centric syndicated shows. Actually heard Herb do an appearance one of them a couple of years ago when I went down for the Alabama/Pack game.

So it will be interesting to see if wfnz, wral, or buzz step up to try to create content to be syndicated throughout the region, much the way WSB has done in the last 10 years, taking Boortz and Clark Howard to wider audiences, and now national powers.

Anonymous said...

I heard it a time or two… Definitely a good idea, just have to have the right talent to pull it off. I noticed at that they are getting ready to re-launch. Conference Call.

Of the local on-air talent, I think Dave Glenn is the only person who could pull off a regionally syndicated show. I haven’t listened to Gold since they started the morning show… haven’t missed him either.

Since Capitol has the ‘Canes games, I wonder what will happen with 850’s Storm Front and Aftermath, as well as Chuck Kaiten’s drop-ins on the morning show?

Just had a scary thought… I hope Taylor Z signed a no-compete clause when he started doing the morning sports on WPTF. Would hate to see him sink the WRAL’s sports talk station.