The Phoenix has confirmed that WPRO talk show hosts Dan Yorke and John DePetro face expiring contracts in the coming months. The expirations, by themselves, aren't all that newsworthy. But with new ownership in place - Atlanta-based Cumulus Media completed a $2.3 billion purchase of the station's former parent company, Citadel, in September - the fate of the two jocks is not entirely clear.
Speculation has swirled since last winter, when news of the Cumulus takeover first surfaced, that the company might drop local programming in favor of cheaper, syndicated fare. Station sources have downplayed that possibility for months - and still do. But Cumulus has made no secret of its plans to cut costs nationwide. Indeed, it's already made cuts across the country, laying off seven people at WPRO and the other Rhode Island radio stations it bought from Citadel.
If saving money is a big priority, might the company ask Yorke and DePetro to take a pay cut? What would the jocks accept? Could they go elsewhere? I'll have more in this week's Phoenix, which hits the web this evening and the newsstand tomorrow.