Well I totally missed the boat on this one. Apparently, everyone’s least favorite (myself included) radio personality is stepping down from his 3-7PM time slot. He won’t be completely gone, just out of the center ring in the sports talk circus. Here’s a nice post by his son Spike from WYSP, some more praise, some backhanded compliments, and straight news regarding Eskin’s future.
The main reason I hated Eskin was his personality. I absolutely admit that he was a reliable source of info., and knew how to analyze things correctly. When I was driving home a few weeks ago, he speculated that the Eagles were up to something because Andy Reid had pushed back his press conference an hour from 6Pm to 7PM. Somewhere during that time period, new broke that they had signed Nnamdi Asomugha. So when it came to news, and facts, he was fine. But when it came to opinions and interactions with people, that’s what made my blood boil.
Forget the fact that he didn’t really like hockey. He always poked fun at the Flyers and the sport itself. Yes, that ticked me off a but, but I understand where hockey stands in the grand scheme of things in our current sports culture. What got me was the fact that he abused the position he had whenever anyone disagreed with him. Nobody is going to sit next to the radio and record it, waiting for the moment someone is blatantly proven wrong or changes their tune. Any time a caller had a point to make that didn’t go along with Eskin, they were cut off. How is a person supposed to prove themsleves without being given a fair chance to speak.
Howard cut people off whenever he felt like it, and obviously had the freedom to finish his thoughts. He could easily claim he was misinterpreted or that misheard. But a person calling in didn’t get the same freedom to talk simply because there was no way for them to mute Howard. He can cut you off, you better not be rude to him.
A few years ago when ESPN posted a few questions from the Wonderlic test (an exam given to NFL draft hopefuls), Eskin was reading questions on the air and giving callers a chance to answer. I had already seen the answers on the ESPN website. Howard was either misreading, or hadn’t even looked at the answers. Because for one the questions, he was reading out the wrong answer. He got call after call, with people getting angrier and angrier because he was cutting them off when everyone was against him. He was blatantly wrong, everyone with half a brain knew it, and he never acknowledged it.
Now with him gone, the sports talk radio horizon in Philadelphia has shifted. Where do we go in the near future?