NESN, New Englandâ€™s most watched sports network, and WEEI Sports Radio, New Englandâ€™s top rated sports radio station, announced today that they have entered into a programming partnership to simulcast The Dennis and Callahan Show on weekday mornings live from 6 am to 9 am. Beginning November 16, 2010, The Dennis and Callahan Show will be available on NESN in New England and across the country on NESN National.
"This programming partnership brings together the two most popular sports media companies in New England in a way that we think complements the strengths of each organization," said Sean McGrail, NESNâ€™s President and CEO. "We have worked closely with WEEI for several years to produce the annual Jimmy Fund Radio-Telethon. We now look forward to working with WEEI on a daily basis to bring The Dennis and Callahan Show to our television audience."
"We're excited because this is the next logical step in our progression as a powerful brand, giving us the ability to provide our great content far and wide," said Julie Kahn, Entercom New Englandâ€™s Vice President, New England Market Manager. "Weâ€™ve built an unprecedented regional radio network, we stream our radio content worldwide via the web, we have original web content, mobile streamingâ€¦and now we will be available regionally and nationally on TV Nobody in our business offers what we do the way we doâ€¦and this NESN partnership impressively expands on that."
NESN will install four remotely controlled HD cameras in WEEIâ€™s studio in Brighton, MA and fiber the feeds back to the NESN HD Television Center in Watertown, MA where NESN will direct the four feeds and add graphics. In addition to the live simulcast every weekday morning, NESN will also replay The Dennis and Callahan Show in primetime on NESN National. A one-hour "Best of Dennis & Callahan" is also planned for late night. The partnership also includes regular appearances by WEEI personalities on NESNâ€™s Red Sox pre-game shows and other sports programs.
"Dennis and Callahan have achieved tremendous success in morning drive on WEEI, and this new partnership with NESN provides the perfect opportunity to expand their footprint across the region. NESN is the ideal partner for us given the incredible power of its reach across New England, and the combination of our two networks will make this new project an instant hit." said Jason Wolfe, Entercom New Englandâ€™s Vice President of AM Programming.
"This is a natural fit for NESN. Dennis & Callahan is the 'go-to' show in the morning for sports and entertainment," said Joel Feld, NESN Executive Vice President, Programming and Executive Producer. "Passionate hosts, loyal fans and no holds-barred discussion. NESN viewers get that with our Red Sox, Bruins and other sports and lifestyle programming so this is a logical way to enhance how we entertain our audience."
Dennis and Callahan were paired together on WEEI in October of 1997 from 10 am to noon and after immense success, were shifted to morning drive in September of 1999 where theyâ€™ve been ever since. The show made an immediate impact in the market and has consistently been the #1 rated morning show in Boston.
The move provides NESN with morning program that is differentiated from the looped morning highlights show that directly competed for viewers with ESPNNEWS. Simulcasts have been employed by other cable networks, notably MSNBC who simulcasted "Imus in the Morning" as a morning show while it was broadcast on WFAN-AM out of New York.Â YES has simulcasted WFAN's "Mike and the Mad Dog" program and its successor show "Mike'd Up" in the afternoon drivetime slot.
Joe Tetreault is Managing Editor of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He can be contacted here through The Biz of Baseball
Follow Joe Tetreault on Twitter
Follow The Biz of Baseball on Twitter
Follow the Business of Sports Network on Facebook