The worst-kept secret in Philly sports talk radio has finally been confirmed - Anthony Gargano is joining 97.5 The Fanatic.
Sources have confirmed a previous report that Gargano, the former SportsRadio 94.1 WIP host who reportedly left over a low-ball contract, is heading over to the Fanatic to launch a new morning show that will be co-hosted by Jon Marks. Marks had been co-hosting "The Jon and Sean Show" for The Fanatic alongside Sean Brace, but Brace departed from the station earlier in April.
The new show, rumored to begin before the end of April, will reportedly replace ESPN's "Mike and Mike" show, co-hosted by Mike Greenberg and Mike Golic. The Fanatic has been an ESPN affiliate since 2009, and there's no word yet if they'll lose that status if they make a change. There's also been no replacement announced to fill the station's soon-to-be-vacant 12 - 2 p.m. slot should Marks move to the morning.
A new morning show would go head-to-head with "The WIP Morning Show," starring ratings champ Angelo Cataldi, who just celebrated 25 years with the station. Since Gargano made a surprise April Fool's Day appearance on The Fanatic, many have speculated he would launch a local morning show at the station to better compete with WIP.
Fanatic program director Matt Nahigian, who couldn't be reached for comment, has admitted in the past that launching a local morning show was something that has been discussed.
"I know this is a market that likes to hear local sports," Nahigian told the Philadelphia Business Journal. "We'd like to have a local morning show but for now, Mike & Mike is one of the most popular shows nationally."
I guess it's time for me to draw a Gargano vs. Cataldi cartoon to go along with this one (click to enlarge):