KSTP radio is pulling the plug on longtime talk-show hosts Joe Soucheray and Patrick Reusse.
Both are leaving the air in four weeks, it was announced Friday. The morning show “Mackey & Judd” and anchor John Heidt will be gone as well.
In all, the news affects nine hours of weekday programming on 1500 AM, which adopted a sports format in 2010 and renamed itself ESPN 1500.
During his “Garage Logic” broadcast Friday, Soucheray said on air that the show’s “great run” on KSTP was ending after the Minnesota State Fair.
“With the sound of the scramble on Friday, Sept. 7, we’re done,” he said.
“We’re going to continue the show on a podcast,” he told listeners. “It’s a crazy world out there.”
Reusse, who also writes a sports column for the Star Tribune, said he learned the news in a phone call Friday with Dan Seeman, vice president and general manager of the station’s owner, St. Paul-based Hubbard Broadcasting.
“I’m 72 years old. It’s not like you don’t expect it to end someday. I am not somber about it in any way,” he said. “It’s been a hoot. I think I survived in radio because I never took it terribly seriously. It was always about fun for me.”
In an interview Friday, Seeman confirmed the cuts and called Soucheray and Reusse “legends in this market.”
“This is more reflective of a change in the media landscape than it is to any performance or any passion, or any creativity that these guys have brought to the airwaves every day,” he said.
Seeman said KSTP plans to develop new shows in the next few months that will debut online first and also air on the AM dial. But he said he’s not sure what will actually be on the air on Sept. 8.
“I don’t know. I’m not being coy. We don’t know yet. We may not be there Sept. 8. We may not really launch anything until mid-October,” he said.
Morning-show co-hosts Phil Mackey and Judd Zulgad will continue to work at the station, and Soucheray’s podcast will be produced by Hubbard, he said.
KSTP has lagged in the ratings, far behind sports rival KFAN (100.3 FM). Overall, it ranked 21st among adult listeners in July with a 1.0 audience share, according to Nielsen Audio, compared to a 3.7 share for No. 11 KFAN.
“Mackey & Judd” airs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on 1500 AM, followed by “Garage Logic” from 1-3 p.m., “Sports Talk” (featuring both Soucheray and Reusse) from 3 to 4 and “Ride With Reusse” from 4 to 6.
In his tweet, Mackey said “more sports content plans” would be announced later.
“I was 24 years old when 1500 ESPN brass took a chance on me in 2010, so this is where I’ve spent a majority of my adult, professional life,” he said.
Soucheray’s “Garage Logic” show first aired on the station in 1993. On the show’s Facebook page, the host describes it like this: “Garage Logic is the seat of Gumption County, down the road from Diversityville, but not as far as Liberal Lakes. It’s a place where common sense prevails, the 2-car garage is revered and cigar smoking is allowed (and lawyers aren’t).”