Chris Russo Photo credit: SiriusXM

After years of being ribbed for giving up his WFAN platform for SiriusXM, Chris “Mad Dog” Russo took aim at Craig Carton for making a similar move.

Russo joined the latest episode of Jimmy Traina’s Sports Illustrated Media Podcast and during the interview, he was asked about the recent lineup changes at WFAN, specifically their afternoon show.

“I haven’t listened in forever,” Russo said of WFAN. “I’m on when they’re on. I don’t put on the morning show that much, I just don’t pay too much attention to it.”

Carton signed off from his WFAN afternoon show with Evan Roberts for the final time in June, opting to take an exclusive deal with FS1 where he will begin his second year hosting daily from 7 – 9:30 ET. To replace Carton, WFAN paired Tiki Barber with Roberts in the afternoon drive slot and added Sal Licata to their midday show with Brandon Tierney.

“Carton did have to leave,” Russo admitted. “Those hours were absolutely ridiculous, you can’t start your day at 4am and end it at seven o’clock at night. You had to do something so I’m not surprised that that is what he did. Although I gotta be fair, everybody kills me for going to Sirius, who’s getting up at seven o’clock in the morning to watch FS1?”

In the years after he made the jump from WFAN to satellite radio in 2008, Russo was routinely mocked for giving up his massive platform in New York to move into oblivion. Carton similarly mocked John Jastremski last year, saying, “he’s not even in the business anymore, right?’ after he left WFAN to join The Ringer. But now Carton is the one willingly giving up his guaranteed audience at WFAN in hopes of building a new one on a different platform.

“I kill baseball when they put Game 7s on the NL and ALCS on FS1 up against college football,” Russo added. “And I say jeez, you got a Game 7 on FS1, so if I say that about baseball in October, couldn’t I say that about seven o’clock in the morning with a sports show?”

People are awake at seven in the morning, and they do watch sports. Whether or not the morning sports audience will trade ESPN or WFAN’s Boomer Esiason and Gregg Giannotti on CBS Sports Network to watch Carton on FS1 remains to be seen. Carton’s FS1 ratings were reportedly low during his first year at the network, but Fox hopes signing him to an exclusive contract will attract more of his former WFAN listeners to their morning TV show.

[Sports Illustrated Media Podcast]

About Brandon Contes

Brandon Contes is a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. He previously helped carve the sports vertical for Mediaite and spent more than three years with Barrett Sports Media. Send tips/comments/complaints to