New Chicago Radio Home - 890 WLS

#1
https://fightingillini.com/news/201...mes-move-to-wls-am-890-station-this-fall.aspx
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (Feb. 4, 2019) – The University of Illinois announced today that WLS-AM 890 is the university's newest radio affiliate and will carry all football and men's basketball games, as well as the seasonal coaches' shows, through the 2023-24 season.
The five-year agreement, which officially kicks off with the 2019 football season, marks a first for the Fighting Illini and Cumulus Media-owned WLS AM 890. During football, fans will be able to catch the weekly radio show with Head Coach Lovie Smith and Head Coach Brad Underwood during men's basketball season.
How do you feel about this? I can't blame them if 670 dropped them (probably), and no one else would pick them up (possibly). But honestly this kind of makes me sick that I am going to have to listen to 890. It was great that the Illini were getting exposure on the top sports talk channel in town where the Cubs and Bulls are broadcasted. Instead now we are on a channel that broadcasts right-wing propoganda and went bankrupt just last year cancelling deals with the Bulls and White Sox.

Also, 670 seems to have a great relationship with Northwestern. It'd be a really bad look if they turn right around and sign NU. Then its pretty clear we were dumped for the program up north.
 
#5
LittyvILLe
https://fightingillini.com/news/201...mes-move-to-wls-am-890-station-this-fall.aspx


How do you feel about this? I can't blame them if 670 dropped them (probably), and no one else would pick them up (possibly). But honestly this kind of makes me sick that I am going to have to listen to 890. It was great that the Illini were getting exposure on the top sports talk channel in town where the Cubs and Bulls are broadcasted. Instead now we are on a channel that broadcasts right-wing propoganda and went bankrupt just last year cancelling deals with the Bulls and White Sox.

Also, 670 seems to have a great relationship with Northwestern. It'd be a really bad look if they turn right around and sign NU. Then its pretty clear we were dumped for the program up north.
They hated us anyway, one is a NW grad, never heard a good thing out of their mouths Good Riddance! Plus they got our bad days, we're trending up in both sports. Their Loss!
 
#6
Sycamore, Illinois
Seemed like we were always preempted on 670. Hopefully WLS can broadcast our games on a more regular basis.
 
#8
WLS is a bigger station than WSCR. It reaches 38 states in a clear night.
Bigger number (890 vs 670), but that's about it. Not to get too radio-geeky on you, but they're both 50kw AM stations, with similar coverage areas (if anything, WSCR covers more ground than WLS).

I can't argue the rest -- there were a lot of pre-emptions on the Score, which should be rare on WLS, and the hosts on the Score really seemed to hate the Illini. I won't miss them, either.

Gotta say I'm glad the Illini at least landed on 890 instead of 560, where they spent a few years in between stints on 670 (2005-2008?). 890 runs 10x the power than 560, so WLS should cover Chicago area a lot better, than WIND did. And that (Chicago coverage) is the main thing. I doubt there are many people outside of Chicago are still tuning into distant AM stations for games these days, and I say that with some sadness as a radio geek.

I moved to Madison almost 15 years ago now, and used to listen to the Chicago AM stations (670, 720, 780) a ton. But there's just so much more interference now (everything from LED bulbs to phone chargers) that distant AM stations have become a chore to listen to. My wife hates all the static and how the signal frequently fades in and out, so I've been listening to more games through TuneIn anyway (happy wife = happy life!) :) TuneIn on the smartphone + bluetooth stereo works great!
 
#9
Bigger number (890 vs 670), but that's about it. Not to get too radio-geeky on you, but they're both 50kw AM stations, with similar coverage areas (if anything, WSCR covers more ground than WLS).

I can't argue the rest -- there were a lot of pre-emptions on the Score, which should be rare on WLS, and the hosts on the Score really seemed to hate the Illini. I won't miss them, either.

Gotta say I'm glad the Illini at least landed on 890 instead of 560, where they spent a few years in between stints on 670 (2005-2008?). 890 runs 10x the power than 560, so WLS should cover Chicago area a lot better, than WIND did. And that (Chicago coverage) is the main thing. I doubt there are many people outside of Chicago are still tuning into distant AM stations for games these days, and I say that with some sadness as a radio geek.

I moved to Madison almost 15 years ago now, and used to listen to the Chicago AM stations (670, 720, 780) a ton. But there's just so much more interference now (everything from LED bulbs to phone chargers) that distant AM stations have become a chore to listen to. My wife hates all the static and how the signal frequently fades in and out, so I've been listening to more games through TuneIn anyway (happy wife = happy life!) :) TuneIn on the smartphone + bluetooth stereo works great!
Thanks for the reference of TuneIn. I'll definitely check it out. Always looking for bigger and better ways to follow the O&B!!
 
#11
According to the Sun Times we approached ESPN 1000 but were turned down because it would conflict with Notre Dame’s coverage. I guess at least we tried to find a better partner.
 
#13
I loved that we were on 670, my station of choice that I can get in Iowa for my Chicago sports fix each day. But it got off to such a bad start. I believe part of the kick off to the relationship was Thomas, Beckman, and Groce live in the studio with Boers and Bernstein. That gave us the wonderful W.I.N.(T) comment from Beckman. They still clown him with that sound bite on the station to this day.
And there is no reason why football and basketball coaches shouldn't have had air time weekly with one of the shows during the season. Probably a good thing we didn't. Beckman would have been killed on air and nothing good to talk about during our partnership.
And in regards to the relationship with NU and 670...NU pays a lot to advertise on that station. Illinois should have been doing the same IMO.
 
#17
890 was likely the best and only option that the Illini had in terms of radio coverage in the Chicago area. 670 The Score's plate is full with the Bulls and the Cubs taking up most nights. 720 WGN would definitely be a no go with their having the Blackhawks, White Sox, and Northwestern football and basketball. ESPN 1000 could have been an option but as someone mentioned before, they have a contract to air Notre Dame football and basketball in the Chicago area.