Cumulus To LMA ESPN 103.3 Dallas
With KESN coming under Cumulus management, 104.1 KTDK will drop its simulcast of “The Ticket” 1310 KTCK this weekend. As Cumulus’ first attempt to divest the station was rejected by the FCC last month, it is unknown at this time how Cumulus will handle the quick divestiture of the station. Unless they have arranged a quick donation of the station, one of their remaining options will be to take the station off the air and turn in the license to the FCC.
Randy Galloway, who had announced his pending retirement from his afternoon slot at KESN when the LMA was first announced, will move up his timetable. Galloway will host his final show on KESN on Monday before the LMA goes into effect instead of remaining until the end of the year. Richie Whitt of DFW Sportatorium reports that KESN GM Pete Dits, PD Tom Lee, and hosts Kelly Webster and Landry Locker will depart the station as well.
Original Report 8/7: Cumulus Media will assume operations of “ESPN Dallas” 103.3 KESN Allen. TX via a long-term LMA.
As of now word is KESN will retain its ESPN affiliation and be programmed separately from Cumulus’ “1310 The Ticket” KTCK, specifically in retaining Mike & Mike and Colin Cowherd. 103.3 is also the flagship of the Texas Rangers and Dallas Mavericks, while KTCK is home of the NHL Dallas Stars.
In the just released July PPM ratings KTCK led the three Sports stations with a 2.4 share, while KESN trailed at a 1.9 and CBS’ “105.3 The Fan” KRLD-FM lagged at a 0.8.
The deal will take effect once Cumulus closes on the spin-off of 104.1 KTDK-FM Sanger to Whitley Media.
Separately, “ESPN Deportes Dallas” 1540 KZMP, which is owned by Liberman Media but programmed by ESPN, will have its programming operations taken over by Deportes Media with no changes in programming.
The full press release follows:
ESPN Audio has reached a long-term Local Marketing Agreement (LMA) with Cumulus Media, Inc. which calls for Cumulus to program ESPN Radio Dallas KESN 103.3 FM. The station will retain the ESPN name and ESPN’s national programming, highlighted by Mike & Mike and The Herd with Colin Cowherd as part of a long-term affiliation agreement. In addition, ESPN Deportes Radio Dallas 1540 AM, through an affiliation agreement, will now be programmed by Deportes Media and will retain the ESPN Deportes Radio moniker. ESPN will continue to own KESN.
The Cumulus Media LMA will take effect upon the closing of the pending sale of radio station KTDK FM, while the Deportes Media affiliation agreement will take effect on September 1, 2013.
“ESPN Audio is always evaluating business options and opportunities, while continuing to serve sports fans,” said Traug Keller, ESPN senior vice president, production business divisions. “These two moves are smart for us in the Dallas market as we grow the audio business and draw on the strengths of Cumulus. Sports fans will continue to have access to the best national and local programming that ESPN Radio Dallas and ESPN Deportes Radio Dallas have to offer.”
In addition to Mike & Mike and The Herd with Colin Cowherd, other ESPN national talk programming will be offered as will the preeminent play by play lineup of NBA, MLB, NFL, college football including the BCS championship and much more. ESPN Radio Dallas is also the home of Texas Rangers and Dallas Mavericks broadcasts and surrounding programming.
The ESPN Deportes Radio programming lineup in Dallas will remain the same, highlighted by the comprehensive lineup of live events, including Texas Rangers baseball, and the news and information content offered across ESPN Deportes Radio network, including Raza Deportiva, the number one morning Spanish-language sports show; and Jorge Ramos y Su Banda, the daily soccer program simulcast on television.
ESPN retains ownership of KESN 103.3 FM and will continue to run and oversee all editorial content on espndallas.com. ESPN Audio will also continue to own and operate local radio stations and web sites in New York, Los Angeles and Chicago.