WTSO

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WTSO
WTSO TheBig1070-100.9 logo.png
City Madison, Wisconsin
Broadcast area Madison metropolitan area
Branding The Big 1070
Slogan Madison's Sports Station
Frequency 1070 kHz
Translator(s) 100.9 W265CV (Madison)
First air date January 19, 1948
Format Sports
Power 10,000 watts (day)
5,000 watts (night)
ERP 250 watts (translator)
Class B
Facility ID 41973
Callsign meaning From the station's AM frequency, Ten Seven ZerO
Former callsigns WKOW
Affiliations Fox Sports Radio
NBC Sports Radio
Owner iHeartMedia, Inc.
(Capstar TX LLC)
Sister stations WOKY, WIBA (AM), WIBA-FM, WMAD, WXXM, WZEE
Webcast Listen Live
Website TheBig1070.com

WTSO (1070 kHz "The Big 1070") is a commercial AM radio station in Madison, Wisconsin. The station is owned and operated by iHeartMedia, Inc., and airs a sports radio format. Since Summer of 2014, WTSO is simulcast on FM translator W265CV at 100.9 MHz.[1]

WTSO's offices and studios are on South Fish Hatchery Road in Fitchburg (but using Madison as its mailing address).[2] The transmitter is off East Tower Road in McFarland. WTSO operates at 10,000 watts by day. But at night it reduces its power to 5000 watts, using a directional antenna, because AM 1070 is a clear-channel frequency. WTSO must protect Class A stations KNX Los Angeles and CBA Moncton, New Brunswick, from interference, so the nighttime signal is nulled away from the west and the east.[3] (CBA switched to the FM dial in 2008 but WTSO still must protect the Canadian AM station's former coverage area.) WTSO's FM translator operates at 250 watts from a 243-meter (798 foot) tower off South Pleasant View Road in Madison.[4]

Programming[edit]

WTSO broadcasts local sports call-in shows during weekday morning and afternoon drive times. "Lucas in the Morning," hosted by longtime Wisconsin Badgers radio analyst and Madison sports columnist/reporter Mike Lucas, is heard from 6 to 8AM. "The Mike Heller Show" airs from 3 to 6PM. WTSO's midday schedule features nationally syndicated sports shows hosted by Dan Patrick and Rich Eisen. At night and on weekends, programming from Fox Sports Radio and NBC Sports Radio is heard. Since the start of 2013, the station's local sports shows have been simulcast on Milwaukee sister station 920 WOKY, an unusual situation where a station in a smaller media market provides the simulcast for the larger market station.

WTSO's live sports coverage includes broadcasts of Milwaukee Bucks basketball and NASCAR races from MRN Radio and PRN Radio, as well as local high school events, including championships in the Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association. WTSO also airs live broadcasts of Milwaukee Brewers baseball and University of Wisconsin Badgers athletics should those events conflict with the schedule of their normal home, sister station WIBA AM 1310.

History[edit]

WTSO's original logo under the "Big 1070" branding (c. 2010)

The station first signed on the air on January 19, 1948, as WKOW.[5] With Wisconsin known as "The Dairy State," the original call letters stood for the word "cow." The licensee was the Monona Broadcasting Company.[6]

WTSO Previous Logo

In the mid-1970s, the call sign was changed to WTSO to stand for Ten Seven zerO, its position on the AM radio dial. At that time it was owned by Mid-Continent Broadcasting and aired a country music format. As country music listening switched to the FM dial, WTSO tried a talk radio format and later adult standards.

In 2000, WTSO went with its current all-sports format, originally as a network affiliate of ESPN Radio, calling itself "Madison's ESPN Radio 10-7-0." On January 1, 2009, WTSO parted company with ESPN Radio and rebranded as "The Big 1070, Madison's Sports Station," affiliating with Fox Sports Radio and later adding programming from NBC Sports Radio.[7] (ESPN Radio programming now airs on 100.5 WTLX.)

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Coordinates: 42°59′45″N 89°18′59″W / 42.99583°N 89.31639°W / 42.99583; -89.31639