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25th Anniversary: Sports Radio 66 WFAN

Timeline of Important Events


Sports Radio 66 WFAN

Sports Radio 66 WFAN

Screenshot: CBS Radio
July 1, 1987: WFAN signs on at 3:00 p.m. at 1050 AM as America’s first all-sports station. Suzyn Waldman is the first voice heard on the station and also serves as WFAN’s Yankee’s beat reporter.

August 1987: Mike Francesa joins WFAN as part-time host.

October 1988: WFAN’s signal moves from 1050 to 660, the former home to WNBC on the AM dial. Don Imus, whose program was currently being broadcast in morning drive at WNBC, become new morning man. The FAN also acquires broadcast rights to the N.Y. Knicks and N.Y. Rangers with switch.

December 1988: Christopher Russo joins WFAN as part-time host.

March 1989: Gary Cohen joins the station as N.Y. Mets play-by-play announcer and calls games for the next 17 years before moving to the television side in 2005. He is replaced on-air by Tom McCarthy.

September 5, 1989: The Mike and the Mad Dog Show debuts in afternoon drive.

February 1990: WFAN airs first annual Radiothon for the Tomorrows Children’s Fund. As of 2012, the Radiothon has raised more than $45 million for TCF, the CJ Foundation for SIDS and the Imus Ranch.

October 1993: Howie Rose becomes the main play-by-play announcer for the Rangers radio broadcasts on WFAN and phases out of his night-time hosting responsibilities. Howie currently covers Mets baseball for WFAN.

March 1993: WFAN’s Ed Coleman moves from middays to Mets beat reporter position, a job he currently still holds.

August 1993: WFAN begins first of six-year agreement to serve as flagship station for N.Y. Jets football broadcasts.

June 1994: WFAN broadcasts the play by play of the Rangers Stanley Cup victory over the Vancouver Canucks. Howie Rose, Marv Albert and Sal "Redlight" Messina call the game-winning broadcast for the station.

March 1995: WFAN named the No. 1 revenue generating radio station in the country, a position it holds for the next four years.

June 1995: Joe Benigno joins WFAN as overnight host, and Steve Somers moves to middays joining co-host Russ Salzberg.

April 1996: Yankees Manager Joe Torre makes his first regularly scheduled appearance on Mike and the Mad Dog Show. The weekly Thursday segment at 5:05 p.m. runs throughout the entire baseball season.

October 1996: WFAN honored with two National Association of Broadcasters Marconi Radio Awards, including "Major Market Station of the Year", and "News/Talk/Sports Station of the Year."

August 1999: Live play-by-play coverage of N.Y. Giants football games debuts on WFAN. The station still serves as the team's flagship.

March 2002: The Mike and the Mad Dog Show launches simulcast of program on the YES Network. Sweeny Murti takes over beat reporter duties for WFAN’s Yankees coverage that same year.

February 2004: WFAN announces multi-year agreement to broadcast New Jersey Devil hockey games live beginning with 2004-05 season.

May 2004: WFAN named as flagship radio station for New Jersey Nets basketball games beginning with the 2004-05 season.

October 2004: Bob Murphy retires as WFAN’s lead Mets play-by-play announcer following the 2004 season. (Murphy was an original Mets announcer starting with the team’s inaugural season in 1962.)

April 2006: WFAN begins online audio streaming at www.wfan.com.

June 2007: The Giants renew their agreement with WFAN.

August 2007: The Nets extend their agreement with WFAN.

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