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|Broadcast area||Provo/Salt Lake City|
|Branding||ESPN 960 Sports|
|Slogan||Utah County's Sports Station|
|Translator(s)||K274AV 94.5 FM (Provo)|
|First air date||1939|
|Power||5,000 watts day
1,000 watts night
|Callsign meaning||K PrOVO|
|Affiliations||ESPN Radio, UVU MBB, BYU Baseball, BYU women's soccer|
|Owner||Dell Loy Hansen
(Broadway Media LS, LLC)
|Webcast||Listen Live ESPN 960 Stream|
KOVO (960 AM) is a radio station broadcasting a sports format. Licensed to Provo, Utah, United States, the station serves the Provo/Salt Lake City area. The station is currently owned by Dell Loy Hansen, through licensee Broadway Media LS, LLC. It is an affiliate for ESPN Radio, which is also the affiliate of sister station KALL. The station is also broadcasting on FM translator K274AV 94.5 FM licensed to Provo.
The station went on the air as KOVO in 1939. In April 1948 it increased its power from 250 W to 1 KW.
Radio pioneer Arch L. Madsen, who would later achieve worldwide stature as Bonneville International Corporation's visionary leader, was KOVO's first station manager. Madsen, who previously built KSUB in Cedar City, Utah, also helped form the Inter-mountain Network which joined KOVO with KALL, KLO, and KOAL. In 1989 Steven Grow and his brother David purchased the old KOVO radio station with hopes of real estate development. They were anxious to develop the property for the next 6–7 years and to discontinue the use of the property by a radio station. Anticipating the sale of the property, they began to arrange with the management of KOVO to remove its towers. When the property did not sell, the radio station continued to lease the property. When flooding occurred in 1983 and a dike was built, the city was careful to include all 33 acres (130,000 m2) of the property in the area protected by the dike, which seemed to indicate the intent to use the property for something other than farming and grazing.
In subsequent years, housing was built to the north of the station, but the property never sold. On 1986-05-12 the station changed its call sign to KFMY which was maintained itself as "Family Radio" for the next six years. In 1992 KZOL a Top 40 FM station still owned by the Grow Brothers as well as the 960 AM station, were sold to James Facer a former KJQ account executive, and promoter Jim McNeil. The station briefly simulcasted KXRK (X-96) then at 96.1 FM, then briefly "S.U.N. Student Underground Network", a format aimed at Utah Valley's college students.
Facer and McNeil sold both stations to Simmons Media in the mid-1990s for approximately $9 Million. While with Simmons media KOVO would simulcast KZNS from Salt Lake City, outside of Cougar Sports 960, BYU Baseball, and Utah Valley men's basketball.
On October 24, 2014, the sale of KOVO by Simmons Media to Dell Loy Hansen's Broadway Media LS, LLC was consummated at a price of $200,000. At that time BYU baseball games would cease on KBLQ and moved solely to KOVO. The station also moved their affiliation from NBC Sports Radio to ESPN Radio.
KOVO's headquarters are located at 50 West Broadway Suite #200 in Salt Lake City, UT.
KOVO airs ESPN Radio 24/7 with a few exceptions. BYU Women's Soccer (Aug-Nov), Utah Valley men's basketball (Nov-Mar), and BYU Baseball (Feb-May) air regularly on the station and preempt ESPN Radio regular program during select days.
- "KOVO Facility Record". United States Federal Communications Commission, audio division.
- "KOVO to 1 kw" (PDF). Broadcasting. April 12, 1948. Retrieved 25 November 2014.
- "ESPN 960 to Carry BYU Women's Soccer Matches: The Voice of the Cougars, Greg Wrubell, to call the matches on ESPN 960". KOVO. Retrieved May 21, 2015.