The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

College Sports

October 10, 2013

WVU game broadcasts exposure limited in state

MORGANTOWN — For the first time in some 70 years, you can’t tune in on a Morgantown AM radio station and listen to the broadcasts of West Virginia University football games.

What’s more, it’s most likely that will be the same sad situation for both men’s and women’s basketball as well as WVU basetball games. Only an FM station that reportedly doesn’t have nearly the range of Morgantown’s AM WAJR, is the lone option accessible.

Apparently you can blame the powers-that-be at WVU and IMG College, which this year signed a partnership for media rights, etc., that is to pay the university $16.1 million per year. Money is the chief concern today, isn’t it?

Despite a claim that this sad predicament could have been avoided, a West Virginia Radio Corp. official denied that IMG ever offered game broadcasts to WAJR.

As a result, WVU games no longer are on any of WVRC’s radio stations, which now number 41.

That’s certainly unfair to countless West Virginia residents — and this should be a major concern for the land grant university’s Board of Governors, President Jim Clements, Athletic Director Oliver Luck, et al.

Interestingly, neither the ailing condition of the Mountaineers’ football program or sports in general were mentioned in Monday’s State of the WVU address.

Dr. Clements zeroed in strictly on academics, as he undoubtedly should have. That’s mainly why any college was founded.

However, isn’t athletics still part of the academic process at WVU and all other such institutions?

If so, that program ought to be controlled as all other areas, shouldn’t it? If so, someone in authority should inform the current WVU Board of Directors.

If that panel has taken any action on what appears to be a worsening crisis in the athletic program, the public has yet to be informed and it has a right to know!

Getting back to the West Virginia Radio Corp., which has a lawsuit against WVU’s BOG and several individuals, it has provided great programming annually since at least 1942, as the Mountaineer Sports Network for WVU.

Yet no one at the university seems to be grateful. This happens to be a different era, and perhaps exposing gratitude is a thing of the past.

WVRC’s 41 radio stations would cover most of West Virginia. Those are located in major cities Morgantown, Clarksburg, Charleston, Cumberland, Md., Elkins, and Beckley.

Since IMG College took over, I’ve noticed that many of its radio stations are located in much smaller towns and areas in W.Va.

Unfortunately, there are some listeners in West Virginia and adjoining states which can’t tune in WVU games on radio.

Isn’t that a really sad situation?

Even my good friend Lester Shaffer and his family are victims. They live off Pa. 857 at the Pa. state line and can’t pick up game radio broadcasts.

Shaffer, who has worked in Morgantown for several years, is a long-time follower of WVU and misses not being able to listen to game broadcasts.

“WAJR’s high-powered signal could be picked up as far as the Pittsburgh area for years,” Shaffer said. “And there are probably thousands of WVU alumni in that vast metropolitan area.”

Shaffer also noted that a lot of people like to turn off TV announcers and listen to Tony Caridi on the radio while watching the telecast.


Text Only
College Sports
  • Trickett takes uncertainty away from WVU quarterback position

    Since the day Geno Smith was selected with the 39th pick of the 2013 NFL Draft, West Virginia’s football team has found itself in a rare position — searching for a starting quarterback.

    July 28, 2014

  • Fred Wyant talks about ‘Pappy’ Lewis and other items of interest

    I saved some other interesting observations from the recent interview with Fred Wyant which you may find worth reading.

    July 27, 2014

  • Herd featured prominently in website’s preseason honors

    Marshall received several nods in the preseason All-Conference USA awards released Saturday.

    July 27, 2014

  • Miners stop Lorain County 5-1

    The West Virginia Miners received a strong outing from starting pitcher Patrick LaGanke, and scored one run in each of the final five innings to defeat the Lorain County Ironmen 5-1 Thursday.

    July 25, 2014

  • Some topics of interest to area fans

    Tom Hart, a widely known retired Morgantown High School administrator and coach, continues to excel as one of the nation’s top bowlers

    July 25, 2014

  • 072514 WVU Replacing Sims a challenge for WVU

    Every year, almost every college football preview publication available lists one key statistic that most use to evaluate the prospects for any given football team — returning starters.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • WVU’s Worley clear starter at cornerback

    There were few bright spots in West Virginia University’s 4-8 football campaign last year, and even fewer on the defensive side of the football, where the Mountaineers gave up more than 455 yards and 33 points per game.

    July 24, 2014

  • Holgorsen to appear on ESPN special

    West Virginia University football coach Dana Holgorsen will appear Wednesday on ESPN’s annual mid-summer college football coaches’ “car wash” — in which guests appear across multiple programs and platforms over one day.

    July 23, 2014

  • Holgorsen: WVU getting comfortable in new league

    Dana Holgorsen remembers the glory days of West Virginia University football — the ones that included conference championships and BCS bowl wins. In fact, he was part of one of those, leading the Mountaineers to a Big East championship and an Orange Bowl victory in his first season as head coach in 2011.

    July 23, 2014

  • 072314 miners Miners take series with Paints

    The way the West Virginia Miners see it, they don’t have the luxury of planning for tomorrow.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

Saints Training Camp