Sports broadcast veteran takes helm at 1070 The Fan

May 3, 2013
Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

A familiar face—rather, voice—has joined 1070 The Fan sports talk radio station full time.

Veteran sports broadcaster Greg Rakestraw on Monday became program director for the Emmis Communications Corp.-owned station, which officially goes by WFNI-AM 1070.

Rakestraw has been a sports-talk mainstay in Indianapolis for nearly two decades.

Most recently, Rakestraw has been working on a variety of freelance projects, and before that he was vice president of programming and content at cable television operation Home Town Sports Indiana.

The door opened for Rakestraw to get back into radio full time when Alan Furst left as program director at Emmis-owned WIBC-FM 93.1 in December. Furst joined a Houston all-news station to be closer to his ailing father and other family members.

After a national search, Emmis officials in April hired Fan Program Director David Wood to replace Furst as WIBC program director and local director of talk programming, said Bob Richards, Emmis Indianapolis operations manager, adding that he interviewed 30 candidates before promoting Wood.

During the hiring process to replace Furst at WIBC, many of the candidates also expressed interest in The Fan program director job. So did Rakestraw.

“We had strong candidates for The Fan job, but the strongest was Greg Rakestraw,” Richards said.

There won’t be anything that Rakestraw doesn’t have his fingerprints on at The Fan, Richards added.

“If you hear it on the air, Greg one way or another will have influence over it,” he said.

Wood called Rakestraw “a prolific play-by-play announcer,” adding that he’s called “hundreds of games and matches … as varied as basketball to diving. Yes, he has done play-by-play for diving.”

In his new position, Rakestraw will continue to fill in on-air and write for the station’s website. He also will be the program director of Emmis’ soft rock station WYXB-FM105.7.

Rakestraw began as an intern in 1996 for WTHR-TV Channel 13 before embarking on a radio career. He was a sports reporter and producer for WNDE-AM 1260 for four years, when that station was the local sports talk radio ratings leader. In 2002, Rakestraw became program director for locally based Raven Broadcasting, which owns WXLW-AM 950. During busy sports seasons, it often seemed like Rakestraw was on the air around the clock at WXLW.

Rakestraw said of his seven-plus years at WXLW, “You name it, I did it.”

Rakestraw became a popular on-air host for the station when it was Indianapolis’ ESPN Radio affiliate. Now The Fan is that affiliate.

In 2009, Rakestraw joined cable television operation Home Town Sports Indiana, where he served as vice president of programming and content for two years.

Since 2011, he has been working on a variety of projects, including on-air fill-in duties for Dan Dakich and JMV’s shows on The Fan. Rakestraw also hosted The Fan’s Indianapolis Colts pre-game show. Last fall, Rakestraw became a regular columnist for The Fan’s website.

ADVERTISEMENT
  • Spelling
    You might want to check the spelling of Dakich.
    • Congrats!
      Way to go, Greg! You deserve it!
    • Oops
      Good catch on Dakich. Sorry, it's been corrected.
    • Congratulations!
      Greg, Your hard work and professionalism is obvious and you deserve great things! Congratulations and enjoy the weekend with an even bigger smile! VYPE staff
    • UIndy Tennis
      Greg, My only surprise was that they didn't mention that you played tennis for UIndy's first NCAA Tournament team!
    • Great Guy
      Greg is our neighbor and a big brain when it comes to sports. We enjoy his slant on current events in the local and national sports areana. We could not be happier for Greg and his family. BT
      • good move
        A lot of respect for Rakestraw. Also, we miss Kravitz and Eddie. Made for good radio.

      Post a comment to this blog

      COMMENTS POLICY
      We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
       
      You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
       
      Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
       
      No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
       
      We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
       

      Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

      Sponsored by
      ADVERTISEMENT
      1. If I were a developer I would be looking at the Fountain Square and Fletcher Place neighborhoods instead of Broad Ripple. I would avoid the dysfunctional BRVA with all of their headaches. It's like deciding between a Blackberry or an iPhone 5s smartphone. BR is greatly in need of updates. It has become stale and outdated. Whereas Fountain Square, Fletcher Place and Mass Ave have become the "new" Broad Ripples. Every time I see people on the strip in BR on the weekend I want to ask them, "How is it you are not familiar with Fountain Square or Mass Ave? You have choices and you choose BR?" Long vacant storefronts like the old Scholar's Inn Bake House and ZA, both on prominent corners, hurt the village's image. Many business on the strip could use updated facades. Cigarette butt covered sidewalks and graffiti covered walls don't help either. The whole strip just looks like it needs to be power washed. I know there is more to the BRV than the 700-1100 blocks of Broad Ripple Ave, but that is what people see when they think of BR. It will always be a nice place live, but is quickly becoming a not-so-nice place to visit.

      2. I sure hope so and would gladly join a law suit against them. They flat out rob people and their little punk scam artist telephone losers actually enjoy it. I would love to run into one of them some day!!

      3. Biggest scam ever!! Took 307 out of my bank ac count. Never received a single call! They prey on new small business and flat out rob them! Do not sign up with these thieves. I filed a complaint with the ftc. I suggest doing the same ic they robbed you too.

      4. Woohoo! We're #200!!! Absolutely disgusting. Bring on the congestion. Indianapolis NEEDS it.

      5. So Westfield invested about $30M in developing Grand Park and attendance to date is good enough that local hotel can't meet the demand. Carmel invested $180M in the Palladium - which generates zero hotel demand for its casino acts. Which Mayor made the better decision?

      ADVERTISEMENT