John Barchard, as you know, is the front man for the Go Birds podcast, which is distributed or otherwise promoted by 94WIP and its Radio.com overlords. The show formerly went by its much less vanilla name, BGN Radio, which was named after SB Nation’s Bleeding Green Nation website. It was that site’s podcast of record, started by Brandon Lee Gowton, who is still the editor for Bleeding Green Nation.
John Barchard came on some years ago as host with a background in radio and podcasting, and he helped grow the show to become one of the most popular sports podcasts in Philadelphia.
In fact, we briefly partnered with them on some advertising deals, and Barchard was a co-host on an earlier version of one of our podcasts.
But opportunity being what it is, Barchard brought the show to the radio – first to 97.5 The Fanatic, and then over to WIP, where Spike Eskin has been assembling a crew of Philly sports Twitter to feature them in various capacities.
The BGN crew remained together. BGN Radio became a symbol of an independent show making its way into the mainstream. Somewhere along the way, however, WIP decided that they could further grow (or water down) the brand and take Barchard and co-host James Seltzer into its fold. The problem is that Brandon Lee Gowton, who continues working for SB Nation, did not end up being part of that deal, despite conflicting accounts coming from both sides as to why that was the case.
Eventually, Eliot Shorr-Parks was hired as WIP’s Eagles beat writer, on August 30th, 2018, a few weeks after the relaunch of Bleeding Green Radio with Michael Kist and Benjamin Solak.
Hey congrats on getting to benefit from the platform I had a large role in creating and growing and then get kicked out of.https://t.co/LPBmAiPUJH
— Brandon Lee Gowton (@BrandonGowton) August 30, 2018
That’s an awkward split. And I can tell you with some background here that allegiance to the show was a cited reason for Gowton passing up on at least one other local career opportunity, before he was eventually left on his own.
Gowton fired up the sub-tweet machine:
I can’t imagine what he was talking about.
The allure of radio and the WIP name should not be overlooked by anyone here.
One can’t blame Barchard or Seltzer for using the opportunity to further their own careers and profile.
On the flip side, it did leave the few folks like Gowton in the dust.
Anecdotally, I was a weekly guest on BGN Radio when it was on 97.5 and then for part of one season while it was on WIP. That is until one day I stopped being asked to be on the show. My theory is that our RADIO WARS reporting no longer made me air-worthy at WIP, a station I was frequently a guest on prior to 2016. Understandable. However, I never did receive an explanation.
But yes, three years on the radio is something to applaud.