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The musings of a Detroit-area sportswriter in the digital age.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Finally dumping your AM simulcast, that's The Ticket!

For the past four years, if you ventured to AM dial, you could find the simulcast of 97.1 FM, better known as The Ticket and home to popular afternoon show "Valenti and Foster." CBS Radio, the stations' owner, has decided to end the AM facsimile after four years in favor of conservative talk radio.
WXYT-AM (1270) will feature the likes of Glenn Beck and Laura Ingraham, as well as local personality Charlie Langton (of Fox 2), who will begin the day from 6-9 a.m. beginning Sept. 12.

The Ticket's website has already been updated with 1270's new logo and states:
"Home to lively conversation and debate, the talk station will focus on the issues affecting Americans with an edge that doesn’t exist in Detroit Talk Radio today."
That's all fine, but I have to ask — why wasn't this move made four years ago when the station moved to FM or shortly thereafter when the move was deemed a success? I can't, for the life of me, think of the benefit to carrying the same programming found on FM only with a shakier reception. (If you know the reasoning behind the delayed format change, please share).
CBS Radio, which also has WWJ-AM (950) in its stable, has the ability to air multiple games in a single night. The Free Press notes 1270 AM will still carry "overflow" games, as it's been used in recent overlapping seasons. Typically, the Lions supersede the Tigers for FM carriage and in the winter, Red Wings and Pistons coverage varies.
It will be fun to see which team gets FM honors if the Tigers are in the playoffs on a Sunday this fall. Other than that, the only question in this move is why did it take so long?


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