WIBW (AM)

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WIBW
WIBW (AM) logo.png
City of license Topeka, Kansas
Broadcast area Topeka/Kansas City Metropolitan Area
Branding The Voice of Kansas, 580 WIBW
Frequency 580 kHz
First air date 1927
Format News/Talk/Sports
Power 5,000 Watts
Class B
Callsign meaning W Indiana Broadcasting Works
Affiliations CBS Radio Network
Owner Morris Communications
(MCC Radio, Inc.)
Sister stations WIBW-FM
Webcast Listen Live (via TuneIn)
Website WIBW AM 580

WIBW (580 AM) is a Topeka, Kansas, area news, talk, and sports radio station that airs such local programming such as Kansas Live ,[1] NewsDay Now with Liz & John,[2] and SportsTalk with Jake & Mark.[3] WIBW also carries national programs such as The Dave Ramsey Show,[4] The Roger Hedgecock Show,[5] The Dana Show with Dana Loesch[6] and The Kim Komando Show.[7] In addition, WIBW is a sports radio affiliate of the Kansas City Royals, Kansas Jayhawks and Washburn Ichabods. WIBW is owned by Morris Communications alongside Topeka's main newspaper, The Topeka Capital-Journal, and WIBW-FM.

Due to WIBW's location near the bottom end of the AM dial and Kansas' flat land (with near-perfect ground conductivity), the station's 5,000-watt signal easily covers most of the Kansas City metropolitan area during the day, and provides city-grade coverage to most of the eastern half of Kansas—as far west as Wichita. It provides at least grade B coverage as far north as Omaha and Lincoln and as far south as Tulsa.

History[edit]

WIBW signed on in 1927. It was originally owned by Senator Arthur Capper along with the Topeka Daily Capital. Capper bought the license for a station in Logansport, Indiana and added a "W" to the initials of the original owner, Indiana Broadcast Works—thus making it one of the few stations west of the Mississippi River whose call letters begin with "W". However, the "W/K" divide for call signs was not always the Mississippi River, and Kansas was on the eastern side of the original call divide. Thus it would have been perfectly acceptable to have a "W" in Kansas in any event. The station eventually spawned a television station and an FM station, both of which still carry the WIBW calls.[8]

Capper died in 1949, and his family sold his holdings to Stauffer Publications, owner of Topeka's other newspaper, the Topeka State Journal; the papers have since merged. Stauffer merged with current owner Morris Communications in 1995.[8]

WIBW's main studios for decades were located on Wanamaker Road in west Topeka, near the Menninger Clinic. The programming there included live country music at 6:00 a.m. as late as the 1970s. The building housing those studios was severely damaged by fire January 5, 2012.[8]

Shared frequency[edit]

Until the fall of 2002, WIBW shared time with a radio station in Manhattan, Kansas, KKSU, which was owned by Kansas State University. From 1929 to 2002, KKSU and WIBW shared the 580 AM frequency — while it was common for stations to share frequencies in the early days of radio, such a concept became outmoded in the 21st century. During the period the stations shared the frequency, KKSU would be on the air in the afternoons, while WIBW would be on during other times of the day.[8]

Many Kansans were shocked by the demolishing of KKSU radio, which occurred after Kansas State University officials decided to cancel its long-time relationship with WIBW after WIBW (Morris communications) tendered a much lower bid than the rest of the bidders. K-State officials awarded the contract to a rival broadcaster from Wichita, Kansas. After dueling lawsuits between KSU and WIBW's owners, the school sold its afternoon ownership of the frequency to WIBW, and the station ceased broadcasting Kansas State football.[8]

Programming[edit]

In 2006, three years after WIBW and KSU parted ways, the station began carrying football and basketball games of the Kansas Jayhawks. On June 14, 2014, the Topeka Capital-Journal reported that WIBW would not be airing the Jayhawks on their station any longer.[9] They made the decision so they could focus more on the Washburn games. Now, the games will be aired on KWIC-FM (99.3) and KMAJ (AM) (1440).[9] In addition to its extensive coverage of high school sports, WIBW also broadcasts the Washburn Ichabods and the Kansas City Royals; for many years, it was the Royals' flagship station. The station carries national broadcasts as well, including the NFL, major league baseball, and college football and basketball, as part of radio networks including Yahoo Sports Radio.

The station is an affiliate of the CBS Radio Network and broadcasts CBS News updates on the hour.

Former hosts[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]