Cumulus, which owns and operates 1310 The Ticket, has reportedly agreed to operate (not purchase) ESPN Radio KESN-103.3 FM in Dallas and will run both stations. This was first reported by Barry Horn of the Dallas Morning News.
Horn also wrote that the end of the September is the target date for The Ticket to assume control of ESPN 103.3 FM.
A source said the executives at ESPN Radio in Dallas were unaware of this merger until last night. This same source also said that ESPN's radio personnel will relocate from its office in Irving to downtown Dallas at Victory Park, where The Ticket currently operates. ESPN's Dallas affiliate built and moved into new offices in Irving approximately four years ago.
This source said ESPN's national programming, primarily Mike & Mike in the Morning and Colin Cowherd, will remain priorities. As for the local programming, which includes venerable radio voice Randy Galloway and other shows such as Durret and Fitzsimmons, not as much is certain.
So far everyone involved has been told this acquisition will not affect the respective lineups at either station. Don't buy it. That's what they all say in the beginning, and a few months later changes are made.
Currently both the Texas Rangers and Dallas Mavericks have contracts with ESPN Radio 103.3 FM in Dallas as their respective flagship homes. How this acquisition affects their home on this signal is uncertain. You can bet neither team wants their games carried on the weaker AM signal.
There is a good chance Sports Radio 1310 The Ticket will relocate the majority of its programming to the 103.3 FM signal, while moving shows such as Mike & Mike In the Morning and The Cowherd to the AM signal.
UPDATE 3:37 p.m. CT: A source said that part of this agreement includes that ESPN's audio content will live on 103.3 KESN FM.
About the only area The Ticket, with its long established shows and personalities including Bob Sturm, Dan McDowell, Craig Miller, Norm Hitzges, George Dunham, Mike Rhyner, Corby Davidson, Gordon Keith et all, has not dominated in terms of local sports radio airwaves is the strength of signal. A move to this FM frequency should change that.
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