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Frank Hanrahan moves on from ESPN 980

For the third time in five years, ESPN 980 is without a Redskins beat reporter. First Bram Weinstein left for Red Zebra (before the merger), then Jerry Coleman was let go, to be replaced by Frank Hanrahan, who was in turn let go this week, as DCRTV reported Friday morning.

The move was described to Hanrahan as a budget-cutting necessity; the station also cut ties with its promotions and marketing director this week. Still, it came as a surprise to the 36-year-old, who had spent two years covering the team and also was Vinny Cerrato's co-host on the since-cancelled "Inside the Red Zone."

"I guess I'm going to miss my co-workers and covering the team more than anything," he told me Friday. "But this is the way it is, and I just move in. It's disappointing, but I get to spend a little more time with my wife and my 11-month son."

Hanrahan, like a fair number of the ESPN 980 on-air folks, has been extremely honest about the Redskins. This season, that meant he was often critical of the franchise. He doesn't believe that had anything to do with his firing, though, and said he was never told to tone down his reports.

"I know [listeners] have told me they admired that I was open and honest about my analysis and observations, and I appreciated that," Hanrahan said. "People always say, 'You guys are owned by the Redskins; has anyone ever said anything to you like Quiet down.' Actually, no. I never felt my job was in jeopardy if I was honest about the team. What else are you gonna say? The record speaks for itself. What positives can you find? I can't be a conspiratorial guy on this one."

With Hanrahan gone, I did want to ask him what it was like working with Cerrato. He said their weekly show prep was a hasty rundown of their guests about five minutes before they went on-air. I asked him to judge Cerrato as a radio personality.

"You know what, that's a very good question," he said. "To be quite honest with you, I think he should have been focusing on the team. He definitely needs to continue to work on it. He needs to watch more Jim Rome. For whatever you want to say about Rome, he's actually good at listening to what people say and then following up. Vinny would just have a sheet of questions, and he would keep going. He would just stick to the script: bang, bang, bang, bang. If somebody said something interesting, he wouldn't follow up, it would be on to the next question. But I enjoyed my time with him."

As for Hanrahan, he hopes to find some part-time radio work in the near future and will begin looking for another full-time gig. Comes with the territory of covering the Redskins.

"It's kind of like being a quarterback or head coach with the Redskins, this job: every couple years they get somebody else to do it," he joked. "It's extremely disappointing, but I go out with a nice little run there and we'll pick up and get going somewhere else soon."

By Dan Steinberg  |  January 8, 2010; 1:57 PM ET
Categories:  Media , Redskins  
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That's really too bad. Hanrahan was a good reporter.

Posted by: rjgianfortune | January 8, 2010 2:11 PM | Report abuse

The lesson here is don't be named "Frank" and work in radio for the Redskins.

Posted by: HowdyDCU | January 8, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Another aspect of the Skins' problem: They see the head coach as pretty much the same as a beat reporter.

Posted by: agupta1 | January 8, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: delfranklin4 | January 8, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

As long as he was just giving reports he was OK. When he talked to the show hosts without a script, he was past "honest" and into "caustic."

They'll get another one. Beat reporters come and go.

Posted by: PS7900 | January 8, 2010 2:44 PM | Report abuse

If Bram Weinstein can make it to ESPN, then Hanrahan can co-host Good Morning America...Sorry to see him go.

Oh, I think I heard advertised that the Sports Reporters will tonight be breaking down the 2009 Skins season, LIVE from Hard Times in Arlington. Sheeesh, what hasn't been said already?!?! The Skins finished 4-12. End of season. Move on.

It would be nice to put Hanrahan on the Caps beat, but like most every other media outlet in town, the Caps are treated like bastard step-children and get nary a wimper (I'm talking about you Polin and 980). Granted, Washington will never be like Toronto and Montreal when it comes to hockey, but good-gawd, the excitement and team at Verizon need much more coverage on the "All Sports 980."

Posted by: AnnandaleAnnie | January 8, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Now, if they'd just get rid of Larry Michael.....

Posted by: rallenii | January 8, 2010 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Hanrahan is a good reporter and it's clear to me that his honesty about the Redskins got him fired. Beat reporters may come and go (as PS7900 says), but good ones like Hanrahan are a rare commodity.

Posted by: eric22 | January 8, 2010 3:08 PM | Report abuse

Hanrahan is a good reporter and it's clear to me that his honesty about the Redskins got him fired. Beat reporters may come and go (as PS7900 says), but good ones like Hanrahan are a rare commodity.

Posted by: eric22 | January 8, 2010 3:08 PM | Report abuse

Hanrahan is a good reporter but it's clear to me that anyone who thinks his honestly about the Redskins got him fired is a borderline nutcase.

It was only a matter of time before one of the nuts living in a fantasy world said Dan Snyder fired Hanrahan for his honesty. Seriously, Eric22, what is it like to hallucinate? I really want to know.

In your hallucinations, does Steve Czaban keep his job and get to criticize the Skins nonstop because he's giving Snyder bjs on the side? I'm just curious, how do these hallucinations work?

Posted by: Barno1 | January 8, 2010 3:25 PM | Report abuse

I liked Frank a lot as a personality and as a person. But I was never floored with his Redskins coverage. It seemed satisfactory at best to me.

Posted by: dlakjesad | January 8, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Rallenii: HA!

The day Dan Snyder does something intelligent, like fire Larry Michael and give Frank Herzog his job back......

they'll be playing ice hockey in hell.....

Can someone please call Snyder out on controlling the media?

Make him sell the team?


Posted by: CF11555 | January 8, 2010 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Best wishes and good luck to you Frank. I think you're a quality reporter.

I'm confused about the move though. Obviously 980 needs a beat guy and Frank was a huge improvement over Jerry Coleman. I think 106.7 should evaluate Hanrahan as an option to replace Chris Russell. Suddenly there are a lot more Redskins beat reporters in town than there are jobs. Maybe 980 is making a run at one of the newly available Washington Times beat guys.

Posted by: seriesoftubescleaner | January 8, 2010 3:55 PM | Report abuse

I was never impressed with Frank Hanrahan's reports from Redskins Park. He did not seem that prepared, and he was rather boring on the air. I won't miss him.

Posted by: astrober1 | January 8, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Ever notice how Frank was always behind the player during the interviews on tv...

Also, all of his reports were either speculation, not prepared, or old news.

Posted by: 2010_NeverAgain | January 8, 2010 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Annandale Anne: you'll LOVE this one. I was channel surfing and hit the Junkies this a.m. They were commenting how BORING the Caps were because they are an elite team that wins all the time. Then they went on to talk to some guy about the report that Tiger Woods has slept with guys. Maybe Ovie should bring a gun to Verizon Center to generate more attention for the team. The DC sports media is pathetic............

Posted by: poguesmahone | January 8, 2010 4:18 PM | Report abuse

i'm sure its tough to be a beat report for a team owned by your station. but the pattern here is pretty clear, hire a beat reported for the season and fire him when the seasons over. why pay a guy for five months of limited work? obviously red zebra thinks beat reporters are a dime a dozen and that in this environment, it will be easy to find someone on the cheap for next season. maybe thats true, maybe not. more likely, they dont care. there's enough skins coverage on that station already. besides, what is the beat reporter really going to uncover, the station gets fed all the skins news first anyway.

doubtful snyder knows who frank is, muchless had him fired. more likely is that red zebra has a budget to manage to and frank was expendable. would have been nice if they could have put him on the caps beat, but that would involve taking time away from the skins and highlighting the exploits of a well run, winning team.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | January 8, 2010 5:05 PM | Report abuse

Excellent comments Dcsportsfan1. I think you hit the nail right on the head.

Posted by: Barno1 | January 8, 2010 5:33 PM | Report abuse

Frank seemed like a nice guy and all but every time I heard him talk, I felt like he hated talking about the Skins. He seemed to hate the Redskins and was always negative. I know the season sucked but at least act like you enjoy your job. Bram Weinstein loved the Redskins and you could always tell when he spoke.

Posted by: rachel216 | January 8, 2010 5:41 PM | Report abuse

Dan Snyder is human scum, in my opinion, but I doubt that he cared about Hanrahan one way or another. I can't honestly say I thought Hanrahan was particularly good any way.

Posted by: poguesmahone | January 8, 2010 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Larry Michaels was, is and always will be a useless tool.

Posted by: c_e_daniel | January 8, 2010 6:55 PM | Report abuse

Larry Michaels was, is and always will be a useless tool.

Posted by: c_e_daniel | January 8, 2010 6:55 PM
I agree 100%.... the man is yet another pox on a once proud organization and i will chher the day when he's finally replaced on the skins radio broadcasts (and his Redskins Nation show on CSN would be unwatchable even if the Skins were in the midst of a 16-0 season)

Posted by: chombie13 | January 8, 2010 10:19 PM | Report abuse

"cheer" the day, that is....

Posted by: chombie13 | January 8, 2010 10:20 PM | Report abuse

All I have to say is Doc Walker is the MAN!

Posted by: GoingGoingGone | January 10, 2010 8:27 AM | Report abuse

Hanrahan and Kevin Sheehan are the best football reporters in DC. As a guy who works in radio it's tough to see great radio people lose their jobs, and the guys who mail it in, don't...something isn't right. 980 desperately needs guys like Hanrahan and Sheehan.

Posted by: bradstinks | January 10, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Just another reason why I'm making a concerted effort to listen to 106.7

Posted by: Kev29 | January 11, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse

Hanrahan couldn't hold a candle to Bram, IMO.

I always laughed when they said "Redskins Beat Reporter", because I always thought of that as an assistant to Reichminister of Propaganda Larry Michael. Obviously Hanrahan had some sense of integrity.

Bram at least left on his own accord, but Hanrahan got the boot, which is proof that being in that position and being honest about the state of the regime won't get you fired. Bram was just as honest about the team as Hanrahan was.

Posted by: Randy_Hawkins | January 11, 2010 3:00 PM | Report abuse

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