my brother Matt called me and told me that Jody MacDonald, perhaps my favorite sports talker in the business had just signed off for the final time on his WPEN 950AM show.
I've listened to Jody for 20 years, first catching his overnight show on WFAN when I was working overnights. Later, when he was hosting mid-days on 610 WIP, we met when he came to the college radio station I worked at. I still caught his show a good bit when he departed for WFAN, but I was thrilled in 2005 when WPEN made Jody the centerpiece of its switch to sports radio and put him on afternoon drive against Howard Eskin.
As much as I love listening to the guy, he was never the brash, confrontation host that radio GMs and PDs seem to want these days. Wry and funny and full of substance, his shows are for the serious sports fan. So it came as no surprise when the station brought in Mike Missanelli and moved Jody to mornings.
When the move to mid-days came after his heart bypass surgery and he was paired with Harry Mayes, the writing was on the wall. Jody was playing out the string here in Philly and even his most frequent listeners knew it.
I will say here today that I am about done with 950. I used to be a big Misanelli fan, but his show seems sophomoric and silly. The station that said it would never insult its listeners and would be a different kind of sports talk is now just a poor second rate imitation of 610, the much-diminished giant of Philly sports talk.
My best wishes to Jody MacDonald and his family. I will be listening on Sirius and on 1050AM.