Millions of sports fan have listened to their local sports-talk radio station and had the thought cross their mind that they know more about the subject matter than the guy talking at them. About 99 percent of the time, those listeners are wrong, as most sports-talk hosts, beneath all the bluster, at least know some stuff about sports.

But when Frank O. Pinion (real name: John Craddock) takes the mic on KFNS in St. Louis, fans tuning in can rightfully claim they know sports better than the host they’re listening to. Pinion, a long-time host on KTRS, is making the jump to the all-sports station despite acknowledging that sports are not at all his forte. Via the St. Louis Post-Dispatch:

“I don’t know sports,” O. Pinion, 67, acknowledged in a lengthy meeting this week. “No one knows less about sports than me.”

He said he grew up poor in Tennessee, began working when he was 11 and didn’t have the opportunity to get involved — or interested — in athletics.

KFNS owner Randy Markel defended the hiring to the Post-Dispatch, comparing Craddock to Babe Ruth and Michael Jordan and saying he wants the best talent regardless of whether the fit seems perfect.

It’s a bit unclear whether Craddock’s show will or won’t actually have any sports on it. The host reportedly said he won’t change his show when he switches station, but Markel insisted his station will continue to focus on sports… while also introducing more entertainment or even politics. Craddock told the Belleville News-Democrat that he wants to widen the audience on KFNS:

Craddock says the addition of his show is the opening salvo in revamping the station from all sports, all the time, to a mix of sports and other entertainment. In so doing, Craddock says he intends to help change the station’s reputation from that of an “elephant graveyard,” where old radio jocks go to fade into obscurity. 

“I have never been anywhere and had a failure,” he says on a 10-minute video selfie he posted Wednesday night on Facebook. (It was his fourth try. His son called once and he belched in the middle of another.) “I don’t intend to make what is probably the last stop in my career a failure, either, and it’s not going to be.”

According to the Dispatch, Craddock’s show will feature periodic sports updates, and if major news breaks, KFNS sports staffers will cut in to cover it.

It sounds like we’ll have to wait a while to figure out exactly how a sports novice will host a show on a sports-talk station, but it seems to be an experiment worth following.

[St. Louis Post-DispatchBelleville News-Democrat]

About Alex Putterman

Alex is a writer and editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. He has written for The Atlantic, VICE Sports, MLB.com, SI.com, the Hartford Courant, Baseball Prospectus, Land of 10 and more. He is a proud alum of Northwestern University and The Daily Northwestern. You can find him on Twitter @AlexPutterman.

  • PAI

    This guy should be embarrassed due to that stage name alone.

    And how is this any different than Doucher and Rich on the Sports Hub in Boston? They were 2 idiots playing Guster and Weezer on WBCN before they started ‘talking sports’.

    • souvien

      Haywood J. Blomey thinks that that name is infantile!

  • Mike Lorentz

    Free dotem

  • Brian C. Lee

    A lot of people on sports TV/radio don’t know anything about sports, so I don’t see what the big deal is.

  • MrBull

    Hey, at least he is truthful…there are people on the air like Cowherd, Steve Mason of Mason & Ireland in Los Angeles, and at least hundreds more who actually know far less then they think or claim they know, especially Cowherd…

    • souvien

      Petros and Money’s takedowns of Cowherd’s idiocy are always a delight…pretty ballsey for being on the same station…

  • kittallmadge

    Most of the dorks on local sports stations don’t know much of anything beyond the obvious anyway. This may actually be a step forward.

  • Barcthespark

    Frank O. Pinion is a legend in the St. Louis market and will automatically bring a ton of listeners to his show on the new station. They probably won’t care to stick around to listen to any of the sports shows, but it could lead to KFNS doing MUCH better in the ratings during his show.

    Believe it or not, the history of sports talk radio in St. Louis is so ridiculously wacky that this isn’t even close to being the craziest thing attempted.

  • Imus was on WFAN for years and years, and barely ever learned a thing about sports, and probably made more money for the station than Mike and the Mad Dog.

    • Waquoit

      That was the first thing I thought of. Imus’ show worked well in the morning drive shift. This article should have provided Pinion’s time slot.

  • Shawn Rychling

    Maybe he should write for AA instead!

  • MrBeepo

    The vast majority of hosts in Detroit know very little about sports and even less about current events, politics and pretty much everything else they spout out.

  • I was the sports director at KAGJ-FM in Ephraim, Utah (the Snow College student station) and I had someone assigned to my group just like this. It was awkward. We had to put him on color analysis for a women’s basketball game. It didn’t go so well.

  • Kyle J

    I’m in Saint Louis and they do not expect him to bring a sports audience. They expect him to bring his current listeners to the new station. His show does well with advertising so it’s more of a business decision.