If this is Kevin Metheny's idea of a clever publicity stunt, it doesn't bode well for his tenure as WGN-AM (720) programming director. Recently named to that position by WGN Vice President and General Manager Tom Langmyer, Metheny took to the WGN airwaves Friday afternoon to announce that the Tribune Co. news/talk radio station is offering its currently-vacant 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. radio show to Rod and Patti Blagojevich. WGN's early afternoon host slot was recently vacated by John Williams, who is now the station's morning drive anchor.
Metheny's stunt would be a lot cuter if he had gotten to it first. Problem is, WLS-AM (890) got there first a couple days ago when it offered Gov. Blagojevich a Sunday radio show if he would resign. To our knowledge, Metheny did not explicitly state the Governor had to resign to get the WGN gig, but the WGN programming director must have assumed Blagojevich couldn't effectively do both jobs at once, even with his wife helping out on the radio.
Metheny may have felt compelled to make the job offer to Blagojevich and his wife because the WLS offer, which was widely publicized, was initiated by WLS Programming Director Bob Shomper, whom Metheny replaced at WGN. WLS, which has recently added Mancow Muller and Pat Cassidy to its lineup of on-air talent, is locked in a battle for listeners and ratings with WGN. So Metheny must have been more than a little miffed when Shomper and WLS grabbed the headlines and pulled focus from WGN.