|Broadcast area||Columbus, Ohio|
|Branding||1460 ESPN Columbus|
|First air date||1922|
|Power||5,000 watts (day)|
1,000 watts (night)
|Callsign meaning||Wolfes Banks Newspaper and Shoes|
Ohio State IMG Sports Network (AM flagship)
|Owner||Dispatch Broadcast Group |
|Sister stations||WBNS-FM, WBNS-TV|
WBNS (1460 AM) — branded 1460 ESPN Columbus — is a radio station that broadcasts from Columbus, Ohio. The station currently broadcasts a sports talk format and carries ESPN Radio programming. It is locally-owned by the Dispatch Broadcast Group, along with WBNS-FM (97.1 MHz.) and WBNS-TV (channel 10). WBNS' studios and offices are located west of Downtown Columbus, near the confluence of the Olentangy and Scioto rivers; its transmitter tower is located in East Columbus.
The station was founded in 1922 as WCAH. The Columbus Dispatch bought the station in 1929 and changed the calls to WBNS. The call letters stand for Wolfe Banks, News and Shoes—the businesses controlled by the Wolfe family, former owners of the Dispatch (the N, or newspaper, in the station's calls, which was sold in 2015). WBNS is also the AM flagship of the Ohio State IMG Sports Network.
In 2009, the station began simulcasting with WBNS-FM, which had previously aired an adult contemporary format. This was intended to improve the nighttime coverage for the station's longtime sports talk format, as well as Buckeyes football and basketball. The AM station must reduce its power to 1,000 watts at night, resulting in reduced coverage outside of Columbus itself. However, the FM station was branded as the main station, under the moniker "97.1 The Fan."
In 2011, the simulcast ended. The AM station began offering additional ESPN network programming and announced plans to create original local content such as an MMA show called "Ground & Pound", as well as a coach's show for the local MLS team, the Columbus Crew. On January 5, 2012 it was announced that the station would carry Cleveland Indians broadcasts in Columbus for the 2012 season, marking the return of the Indians after their absence from the Columbus market for the 2011 season.
WBNS is one of five stations remaining in the U.S. to broadcast from a Blaw-Knox tower, a tower with a distinctive diamond-shaped cantilever design.
- ESPN 1460
- Query the FCC's AM station database for WBNS
- Radio-Locator Information on WBNS
- Query Nielsen Audio's AM station database for WBNS
- FCC History Cards for WBNS
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