It’s the end of an era for sports radio in Boston.
Longtime morning drive host Gerry Callahan announced Friday his 20-plus-year run at WEEI is over.
“Well, that was fun. After 20 years in morning drive, I did my last show on WEEI this morning,” he said in a tweet. “Thanks to all who listened. Unfortunately, this ain’t a movie. Sometimes the bad guys win. Much more to come.”
Callahan had been a staple of the WEEI weekday morning programming, experiencing incredible success at points throughout his career. The former Boston Herald and Sports Illustrated writer originally was paired with John Dennis in 1997 to form the rating giant “Dennis and Callahan Show.” Ratings eventually started to lag, and Dennis left the show in 2016, which is when Callahan was paired full time with Kirk Minihane. That pairing ultimately had its own share of success before Minihane’s controversial exit that eventually landed him at Barstool Sports.
That led to a third change in as many years with Mike Mutnansky moving into the full-time role on “Mut and Callahan” on the WEEI morning airwaves.
Callahan’s announcement comes a day after The Boston Globe reported another decisive ratings win for Boston’s other sports radio station, 98.5 The Sports Hub. According to the Globe, 98.5’s morning show “Toucher and Rich” bludgeoned “Mut and Callahan” in the recent ratings book. “Toucher and Rich” finished first in the market with a 9.1 rating, and “Mut and Callahan” lagged behind in fifth with a 6.5 rating.
Callahan’s contract reportedly was up at the end of the August, so the timing of the decision and announcement is seemingly odd. However, anyone paying close attention to recent developments at WEEI likely knows the name Bob Murchison. He has apparently made its mission to go after WEEI and Entercom business partners since 2017 when he heard Minihane and Callahan discussing transgender issues on the morning show. Murchison, who has a transgender son, started notifying advertisers of content he thought was offensive coming from the morning show.
“They didn’t want me to distribute their content to sponsors,” Murchison told Boston Magazine in March for a profile about Minihane. “I wanted them to stop speaking in bullying and, frankly, ill-informed ways about transgender people. We were going back and forth.”
Eventually, Minihane was gone, and apparently, Callahan is, too.
Minihane weighed in on Twitter shortly after the Callahan news broke.
“This is all on Entercom,” he said, quote-tweeting Callahan’s tweet. “They let Bob Murchison call the shots. A disgrace. Shameful. I’ve been unfair to Gerry the last few months for sure – misplaced anger. This is just bull (expletive).”
It likely won’t be long before we hear the rest of Callahan’s story.
UPDATE (12:57 p.m. ET): According to The Boston Globe’s Chad Finn, WAAF morning show host Greg Hill will replace Callahan on WEEI.
Thumbnail photo via YouTube/WEEI