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The Chicago Bears were a hot commodity in the final weeks of the pro football season -- as the possibility loomed that the team could wind up competing in the Super Bowl. Though the team was a hot topic of discussion throughout December on the city's two sports talk radio outlets -- WSCR-AM (670) and WMVP-AM (1000) -- all the talk wasn't enough to propel either station to the very top of the Arbitron rankings among males 25 to 54 in the holiday Arbitron book released this week.

WSCR did hold on to fourth place in the adult male demo in the holiday book, while WMVP was tied for ninth place overall. But in case you're wondering what station ranked first among males 25 to 54 in the holiday book, that would be WLIT-FM (93.9) and its round-the-clock holiday music format. We're told that males who may have a chance to pick what station the radio is tuned to at other times of the year, relinquish that right to the women in the house during the holidays. Apparently even when the Bears are closing in on a Super Bowl berth.

ESPN Radio's sports talk WMVP-AM (1000) has a new program director, Adam Delevitt, who had been the station's assistant program director. He replaces Justin Craig, who moved last month to New York to become program director at ESPN Radio's flagship station there, WEPN-AM (1050). Chicago native Delevitt had previously indicated he was interested in the top programming job at WMVP. The station reportedly did talk to other candidates, but ultimately concluded Delevitt was the right guy for the job.

Justin Craig, program director for the past 4 1/2 years at ESPN Radio's sports talk WMVP-AM (1000), is moving on to handle similar duties at the sports radio network's flagship New York station WEPN-AM (1050). Craig came to WMVP from ESPN's corporate headquarters in Bristol, Ct., where, among other things, he was involved in producing ESPN Radio's popular "Mike & Mike In the Morning" show.

Craig's departure leaves a key post vacant in the WMVP programming department. It is expected to take several weeks to fill the position. But one likely candidate for the job is Adam Delevitt, who has been assistant program director under Craig. Delevitt said Thursday that if he gets the job, he foresees no major overhaul of the current programming. His main goal, Delevitt said, is for WMVP to remain super competitive with WSCR.

On Monday, the general counsel of the National Labor Relations Board issued a complaint alleging that ESPN Radio's sports talk WMVP-AM (1000) improperly installed Web cameras without negotiating with the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, the union that represents on-air talent at the station.

The cameras were apparently installed in the studios as part of WMVP's strategy to develop a simultaneous Webcast of its radio programming. AFTRA subsequently charged that the move to install cameras represents a change in the conditions of employment and therefore must be subject to collective bargaining.

The NLRB complaint also alleges that WMVP unlawfully bypassed the union and bargained directly with on-air personalities regarding compensation and the assignment of new duties related to its renovated Web site. A hearing on the matter has been set for March 8, before an NLRB administrative law judge in Chicago.

A work contract covering WMVP employees expired in late 2007, and negotiations have so far not resulted in a new contract. A WMVP spokesman could not be immediately reached for comment.

It's official. John Cravens has been name general manager at sports talk WMVP-AM (1000). He replaces James Pastor, who has been promoted to oversee parent ESPN's project to set up more market-specific sports Web sites in various cities around the United States. Cravens had been WMVP's general sales manager.

As first tipped here, James Pastor indeed is taking on a new role within the ESPN sports empire. After five years as general manager of ESPN Radio's WMVP-AM (1000), Pastor now will head up the ESPNLocal.com unit, charged with creating and maintaining dedicated ESPN-branded Web sports sites in major markets.

Pastor was involved in developing the Web concept, he told us, so it made sense for him to transition to the new assignment. "I'm going to miss the radio unit," said Pastor. ESPNChicago.com was the first of the Web sites to launch last April. Boston and Dallas sites launched last month, and Pastor said he will oversee the launch of New York and Los Angeles sites early next year. The plan is to add the dedicated Web sites in more markets over time.

While he is settling into his new role, Pastor said he will continue, on an interim basis, as WMVP's general manger until a new GM is selected. Pastor said he will have a role in that selection process along with ESPN Radio Group senior vice-president Tim McCarthy. External and internal candidates will be considered for the job, Pastor said.

Sources report that ESPN Radio's sports/talk WMVP-AM (1000) president and general manager James Pastor has been promoted to a new post with ESPN's Web operations. No word yet on who will replace him at WMVP, but sources expect it most likely will be an ESPN radio exec with a sales background. Pastor, who did not respond to an email request for comment, reportedly was en route to ESPN headquarters in Bristol, Conn. on Tuesday.

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Lewis Lazare has written the Media Mix column for the Chicago Sun-Times for the past seven and a half years.

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This page is an archive of recent entries in the WMVP-AM category.

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