Before Alex Reardon became a production assistant at Fox Sports, she interned with 97.5 in 2010 as a Studio Production Intern while at Temple. In the midst of today’s (and yesterday’s) absolute mayhem at both 97.5 and WIP, Reardon opened up a little bit about what she experienced behind the scenes at the Fanatic. None of it is really surprising:
I’m told Josh Innes is out at WIP, as of today.
We’ll have more soon.
UPDATE: I’m trying to pinpoint the exact reason, but it is believed that Innes, who had been suspended by WIP in January for making a “house negro” comment about Jason Kelce, went too far in his response to 97.5’s fake caller “Dwayne From Swedesboro.” At one point during the show yesterday, Innes said something about the black guys who cut Mike Missanelli’s lawn (I’m paraphrasing as we are trying to dig up the exact quote). There was also this Tweet:
However, it’s possible that the sum total of Innes’ continued efforts to push the line, particularly with regard to race, just became too much for WIP to deal with.
Innes was in the building today, preparing for his show, and was informed sometime before 1 p.m. THE MUSIC MUST:
The Phillies will be in attendance at Tim Tebow’s
desperate plea for attention baseball workout next week. According to Ryan Lawrence, “the Phillies will be among the 20-some teams that will reportedly watch Tebow’s baseball workout.” Whoever those ten-or-so teams not making the trek are, they’re the smart ones. Though honestly, if you want a way to sell Double-A or Single-A tickets and get some immediate PR, there’s no reason the Phils couldn’t take a flier on him. That’s exactly what Tebow is banking on. He’ll sell tickets, get headlines, and keep his name in the press. Such is the Tebow way.
And honestly, I wouldn’t mind writing a daily “Tim Tebow Double-A Strikeout Tracker” post, so let’s get him, Phils.
Jim Schwartz isn’t out on Marcus Smith. Philly.com:
The simplified narrative from people covering the Eagles has been, ex-practice squad defensive end Steven Means good, 2014 first-round draft choice Marcus Smith bad, but that perception might be colored by Smith’s poor first two seasons here, and by all the time he missed in this training camp with a concussion. Defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz also likes Means, Schwartz said Tuesday, but not necessarily at the expense of Smith. Asked what he’d seen from those two, Schwartz said: “Same stuff we’ve seen from those guys in training camp just about every day. You guys were probably on Steven Means before anybody else because you saw the same things we saw. And Marcus was doing really well. He just had a setback with the concussion and missed time. But he sort of picked up right where he left off.
Stephen Tulloch once got mad at Jim Schwartz for trying to give him a day off. Philly.com:
Tulloch said he invests in his body the same way he would invest in the stock market, and Schwartz said he’s unconcerned about Tulloch’s fitness level this late in the summer because of the way Tulloch trains. In 2013 in Detroit, Schwartz tried giving Tulloch a day off in training camp. Tulloch went to Schwartz’s office upset. He said he has never missed a game or practice going back to high school. He called practice “more important than the game.”
Tulloch is here for whatever is asked of him. Philly.com:
On Tulloch’s first day, two things became clear: Tulloch, 31, is eager to embrace whatever role Schwartz gives him. And no one on this team has a closer, deeper connection with the coordinator. For now, the first factor will keep any friction from developing, but in the long run, it’s hard to see the second factor not figuring into the story of the 2016 season. “Just come in and play ball,” is his goal, Tulloch said. “I didn’t ask (Schwartz), when I first came here, what role I was going to play. I just told coach, whatever you need me to do, I’ll do. “I know what he does, I know what he expects out of his players. If that helps younger guys get better, I’ll do that.”
And Tulloch feels very comfortable in the defense. Philly Mag:
“I feel most comfortable with this defense,” Tulloch said. “Teryl Austin’s defense in Detroit, [a] very good defense, [was] something I was getting used to going into my second year there. But obviously, I played in this defense for about six, seven years and numerous games, numerous playoff games, battling back down to the Colts many years in the AFC South, so we’ve been through it. Some tweaks have been made along the way through his time in Buffalo coming here, but it’s pretty much the same defense.”
Darren Sproles is set to take on a more standard role. Philly Voice:
When asked who might fill a role similar to Woodhead’s, Reich pointed to the obvious answer. “Sproles is the original. He’s the prototype,” said Reich. “Right from the start, I remember first coming in when (Doug Pederson) hired me, some of the immediate talk was how we get to use a guy like Darren Sproles.” In San Diego, it didn’t end with Woodhead. The trio of Melvin Gordon, Brandon Oliver, and Donald Brown chipped in an additional 54 catches in 2015. “All the backs have shown a good aptitude to pick things up in the pass game, and be good route runners,” Reich added, “so we think we can mix it up, but certainly Darren, he’s the starting point.”
The players the Eagles have in place are very important because of the future cap situation. Philly Voice:
The Eagles aren’t going to be able to do much in 2017 or 2018 free agency, as they have the least amount of cap space in the NFL both of those years. We spend a lot of time here talking about if Carson Wentz can become that franchise quarterback, and make no mistake, he’s the most important piece of the puzzle. But Roseman also needs production out of almost all of the players he locked up. With the Eagles missing draft picks in addition to cap space, this doesn’t figure to be a particularly deep roster anytime soon.
Marcus Hayes thinks the team needs leaders. Philly.com:
No team in Jeffrey Lurie’s era of ownership has featured less dynamic star power to act as the voices of the team. Leadership is intangible, and leadership is often dismissed, but leadership in a brutal, short-term job like the NFL cannot be overstated. All good teams have capable leaders, and the best leaders combine talent on the field with the ability to articulate issues off the field; and, if necessary, administer justice in the locker room. It’s hard to be sheriff and spokesman if you’re an ordinary player. Howie Roseman seems to have compiled a team chock full of ordinary players.
And rookie RB Wendell Smallwood is excited to finally hit the field. CSN:
“I’m really excited, ready to go,” Smallwood said Tuesday. “It’s been a while since I’ve been in a game.” Smallwood held out some hope that he would play against the Steelers, but said he never cleared the final hurdle.
“The trainers and coaches didn’t feel like I had my last burst,” he said. “I didn’t feel like I was up to full speed, I was about 85 percent running. I didn’t feel like I had that last gear … this week, I’m back to full speed.” As he discussed last week, Smallwood has maintained his focus and tried to learn from watching his teammates while on the sidelines. Given his desire to impress as a rookie and the fact that he’s never missed a game before in his football career, that’s obviously been a challenge. Running backs coach Duce Staley and veterans like Darren Sproles understand that and have paid close attention to Smallwood’s development.
Haha I’m just kidding– he’s right.
We were EMBROILED in the Dwyane From Swedesboro story yesterday and missed this, but no one can possibly be mad at what Redskins cornerback Josh Norman told ESPN:
“Have you ever once been one of the top 20 quarterbacks in the league?” he says of Bradford. “Not that I remember — and you want more money? I can’t wait to play him twice a year.”
That’s the whole post. I have nothing to add. I don’t even dislike Norman for ripping our quarterback. I can’t blame him. He’ll probably pick Bradford twice the first time they play. Shut it down.
This is how my boss makes me spend the afternoon of my birthday.
Josh Innes opened his show today by playing the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band’s “Mr. Bojangles,” letting the song ride out until the line “He danced for those in minstrel shows and county fairs,” when Innes chimed in. He opened by asking “General Knowledge question: What station is now a minstrel show in Philadelphia?” Surprisingly, he moved right on to discussing the new Madden game and the show’s plan to run season simulations to predict the Eagles record right after that. For a couple minutes, he’d just drop a passing shot at Miss here – “No need to go anywhere else today, you’d probably just hear some fake callers talking to some fake hair dyed radio hosts” – and there – “callers named Dwayne hop to the front of the line.” But after a long commercial break, he went off:
Innes: “No reason to go anywhere else because what you’re hearing here is what you’re actually hearing here.”
Reigner: “And if it wasn’t, you’re dumb and you had no idea, right?”
Innes: “People are tweeting me about – I’m gonna start calling Mike “Soul Man” now – but Soul Man or Al Jolson whatever you wanna call him, but I’ll go Soul Man – it was a C. Thomas Howell movie where a guy takes a pill to be black – so evidently over at 97.5 they’re a bunch of soul men over there and their whole schtick is that they have fake callers. And then what I’m being told by people on twitter is they’re trying to paint is as everyone in the world has fake callers to the point that they’re referencing Howard Stern and saying the whack pack…no the whack pack are actual whackos who called in because they could get people to call into their radio show and don’t have to fake it. I mean you’d think with your lame, lousy questions, real people would call up and answer your softball, general knowledge garbage, but as it turns out, your callers are as fake as your hair.
From what I understand, Soul Man is saying he knew nothing about this and that he was duped. So of course Soul Man, who is a guy that regularly is offended by everything because he’s so consumed by white guilt that he has to get up and stump for every offensive cause and tell you how awful you are…”
Reigner: “He’s offended by the guy on the pizza box.”
Innes: “He is a guy that is offended on behalf of everyone and everything, that is his schtick. He is Soul Man. But you mean to tell me that you don’t think Soul Man had any clue for a couple of years that a guy that was calling his show was not real. You don’t belive that, and that’s also not the story, by the way. The story is not that there’s a fake caller…the problem is when it comes to 97.5, everything about that radio station is 100% phony. I knew the hosts were phony, because I knew that guys like Rob Ellis were asking to stay on the show with me…or the Cuz shakes you hand to your face and then tells everyone behind your back that you suck, or that Mike’s hair is actually black. I know there’s a lot of phonies over there. I didn’t realize the callers that called the show were fake and they stacked the lines.
And not just fake callers, guys who are WHITE pretending to be BLACK guys. Like, that’s what makes me laugh about all of this. Mr. Soul Man, who is offended by everything…white guilt to the nth degree and he pretends to be boys with all his brothas, HE WOULDN’T LET YOU MOW HIS FREAKIN LAWN on the Main Line. Oh but on the air he’ll pander to you hard and you’ll buy it because you think brothers are actually calling the show. Turns out it’s a WHITE GUY pretending to be black calling the show.”
Reigner: “I’ve never met the man, but I’ve heard enough stories to know he’s a red ass…He’ll flip out on people. We know that Soul Man will punch somebody, will throw someone up against the wall that still works here. We know that. So you’re gonna tell me that guy got played for two years, and it’s just “oh well I don’t see what the big deal is”?
Innes: “Let’s give him the benefit of the doubt and say he doesn’t know: Then you’re listening to an old, out of touch idiot that doesn’t know he’s being pranked by someone doing a minstrel show. Worst case scenario: He knew about it. Best case scenario: He’s an old man with dyed hair who has no idea what’s happening on his show. You like it, then you like it, but whatever.
It’s baffling…Basically what you’re dealing with is 97.5 is run by a bunch of entitled white kids who portray black characters on the radio. Is that fair to say if we wanna throw a blanket over it? You’ve got guys who are in a pretty high position of power, like Myrtetus, who is orchestrating this entire ruse and lying to the audience, and not only lying to your audience, but doing a minstrel show. People went off on me because I posted a picture of Al Jolson last night, but that’s what that is. It’s a minstrel show when a goofy white guy not only calls as a black guy, builds an entire twitter account with pictures and everything. So it’s funny to me because the guy is offended by everything, but now there’s no way this guy didn’t know this was going on.”
We knew Innes would have a field day with this, but I’m honestly surprised he didn’t do it right off the top. Only took a few minutes though. MAESTRO (or something):
Mike Missanelli off the top today on what he dubbed Dwaynegate:
Audio 97.5 The Fanatic
“Today we will deem DwayneGate. Since this story has taken over the world. And thanks to the intrepid hardcore bastions of hard-hitting journalism reporters at Crossing Broad, cracking the big case as if they discovered the Lindbergh Baby, and where the Lindbergh Baby was kidnapped, comes up with the story that Dwayne from Swedesboro was actually not Dwayne from Swedesboro, that he was a voice from our own producer here at 97.5 The Fanatic named Pat Egan. Now, I don’t really quite know what the story is that is so important that it is a major story for all the blogs. It got to Deadspin somehow, and Philly Mag dot com, and Philly dot com, and all that. But here’s what I will say. I didn’t know that Dwayne from Swedesboro was not a real person. There may be people here that knew all along that he wasn’t a real person. I did not know, because I don’t know who are real persons that call us or not…I don’t really know them on a personal level…Dwayne from Swedesboro, we’ve occassionally asked the question if he was real or not, having never met him. Now I was told that he was at the station once…so I assumed he was a real person. Now, I don’t really know what the story is, and I hope that people will tell us what thw story is…Let’s face it, in radio, it’s not the first time people have made up a character in radio, so I don’t get what the outrage is, unless you thought that it pushed the boundaries of racial lines. And if you thought that, and you were offended, I’m right there with you. If you are offended by Dwayne from Swedesboro and the content of his call, then I have wide open ears for you to hear your calls and to hear your complaints…I mean I really don’t understand the hubub of a fake caller that has appeared many times in radio circles. The bottom line is: Dwayne entertained many people.”
Mike opened up his show for discussion on the topic, even though he continued to downplay the notion that it was a story. Pat Egan came on briefly and explained that he used to call as Dwayne from the studio behind Mike, which was quite funny. Mike is being sympathetic to the race angle. He is calling me “Woodward and Bernstein” and “an ambulance chaser blogger,” which is funny because he’s had no problem running those lights with me when he’s emailed me tips in attempts to get me to bash (off the top of my head) Glen Macnow, Howard Eskin, John Gonzalez, Andy Bloom, Tony Bruno, Michael Barkann, Josh Innes, and, my personal favorite in light of recent events:
If you can’t read that:
“That other station is so desperate that they’ve resorted to having their minions (as few as they may be) making phony phone calls to all of our shows. Pathetic.”
Meanwhile, Glen Macnow comes over the top – publicly – as tipsters are lighting up my inbox and phone regarding fake callers in sports talk radio:
Bring me my wartime epaulettes. And the music. PLAY ME MY MUSIC:
OK so the number one response to the “Dwayne From Swedesboro” post has been people asking whether or not Mike Missanelli knew that he was talking to a producer. I genuinely don’t believe that he did. From the moment I started poking around on this story, everyone I spoke to, with no allegiance or reason to protect Missanelli, volunteered the information that perhaps the best-funniest-craziest part of the story was that Mike was the only one on the on-air and programming side who had no idea. Mike – who I can assure you is not thrilled about any part of this – seemed genuinely caught off-guard by my email when he discussed it on the air with Jason Myrtetus.
I had reached out to Mike yesterday. He didn’t immediately respond to me, and opted to do so on the air, but he emailed me back at 5:45 p.m.– I didn’t see it until after I posted the story. Here’s what he said: Continue Reading