Tribune Media’s experiment with a Chicago-based sports talk radio station is over. The end of 2014 will come with radio silence at The Game 87.7 FM1. It’s game over for Chicago’s third, and newest, sports talk station. A lack of advertising revenue ultimately brought down the city’s first FM sports talker, a station that launched just nine months ago2. And that’s too bad.
Chicago is a sports market that supports two professional baseball teams, a pro basketball team, an NHL franchise, an NFL football team and an MLS soccer team. The Chicago sports fanbase is fervorous enough to keep two sports radio stations operating — ESPN Radio 1000 and 670 The Score. With enough patience, proper management and better marketing, Chicago would’ve supported another one. Unfortunately, short-sighted executive leadership failed sports talk fans as well as the many talented hosts, producers, engineers and other employees of the station.
A new radio station takes time — more than nine months — to develop corporate partners and on-air talent needs time to gel. Jimmy de Castro, the WGN Radio President and General Manager, needs some wins soon before his career with Tribune Media goes the way of The Game 87.7 FM.
Niral Patel ~ SecCitySportsReport@gmail.com ~ @SecCitySports