Monthly Archives: June 2008

Rhea Hughes takes over the DL

Listen to the interview with Dan and Rhea Hughes

In this episode, the first lady of Philly sports talk radio, Rhea Hughes, joins the show to talk about her career and what it’s like being one of the guys. Hughes is one of the busiest people in town, so we get a glimpse at her daily routine — and what waking up at 3am for a decade does to one’s social life.

We talk about her role on the WIP morning show, and if she ever feels like she’s betraying her gender while being party to some of WIP’s staple bits, like Miss WIP and the Wing Bowl. She has some pretty strong feelings about the role of women in sports, even taking direct shots at TV executives for putting people like Lisa Guerrero on the sidelines of Monday Night Football. Her viewpoints seem to directly conflict with much of the discussion and many of the on-air gimmicks on her show, so I ask what she thinks of the disconnect and how she justifies being a part of things she clearly has no taste for.

We also discuss the wave of suspensions and firings in media today (including Bill Conlin from Daily News Live and Kidd Chris from WYSP), and if members of the media feel the need to dance on eggshells in today’s social and financial climate.

Speaking of eggshells, we talk about Andy Reid and how they constructed their line of questioning when Reid visited the studio last month. I juxtapose their interview and the topics they chose to ask with my interview with Darren Daulton and ask Rhea where the line is between asking the questions that need to be asked and avoiding some topics in order to get the interview.

We finish by talking about the brewing radio feud between Mike Missanelli at 950 and seemingly the entire WIP roster. Rhea worked with Mike, so it’s interesting to get her take on his onslaught on WIP since his return.

And we even manage to talk a little Fightins.

After the interview, I steal a few minutes to mourn the loss of one of America’s great newsmen in Tim Russert. We talk a lot of politics on this show, and I know for me, this Presidential race will not be the same without Tim and his whiteboard come November.

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Philly Weekly Takeover – David Aldridge

 Listen to the Interview with Dan and David

In this episode, we talk with David Aldridge of TNT, and formerly of the Philadelphia Inquirer. David has had quite the career, working for the Washington Post and ESPN before his most recent stops, covering everything from the Redskins and Bullets in DC to the big four in Philly to Stanley Cups and World Series to the Barcelona Olympics in ’92. And that’s not forgetting his fantastic work covering the NBA.

We talk with David about the change in the industry of sportswriting, and how the career arc has changed to fit TV into the model. I also ask David about where blogs fit into the mix, and if sportswriters feel that bloggers are taking a shortcut in the industry and haven’t paid their dues.

David was one of the few sportswriters who left his job in the last few years on his terms. He wasn’t forced out, didn’t take any buyout, just left on his own. I wanted to know why this was the right time for him to leave. I also wanted to talk about his time with the Inq, specifically the criticism he would get for being a sportswriter living in a different city.

I couldn’t have a guy like DA on and not talk about one of his colleagues at the Inquirer – Stephen A. Smith. We have a lengthy discussion about race, and the lack of a strong African-American presence in sportswriting in the city. DA states it’s a nation-wide issue. I press him on if SAS has become the de facto spokesman for black sports commentary, and David’s thoughts are both candid and well thought out, which leads to an interesting conversation about race and media and where to find strong black voices.

We finish with some quick hits about the NBA Finals, Kobe Bryant and which is a bigger problem for the league – drugs or gambling. And since David is one of the biggest political buffs around, we ask him who will be our next president.

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