WFAN’s Fantasy Phenom

WFAN’s “Fantasy Phenom Challenge” finals were held on Friday at Bar A, in Lake Como, New Jersey. Five finalists vied for the Grand Prize of a chance to host a once a week air shift on WFAN for one year.

The “Fantasy Phenom” finalists are all local to the New York Metropolitan area and were chosen from over 2,000 fans and loyal listeners who showed up at the auditions. Tryouts were held at area malls this July, as well as at local Buffalo Wild Wings Restaurants throughout New York and New Jersey. The opening round of candidates were narrowed down to 50 semi-finalists and eventually to the five finalists. The semi-finals were also held at area Buffalo Wild Wings Restaurants.

WFAN wants to thank the thousands of listeners and potential broadcasters who participated in our “Fantasy Phenom Challenge“.

Voting for the “Fantasy Phenom” is now closed. Our grand prize winner will be announced by Mike Francesa at 5 p.m. today.

Here are the five finalists:

1. Otis Harper, Roselle, New Jersey

2. John Shea, Wantagh, New York

3. Patrick Creighton, Bethpage, New York

4. Gregg Sussman, Manalapan, New Jersey

5. Al Renauto, White Plains, New York

“It’s been quite an exciting summer as we’ve heard from so many people who are looking to be a part of this once in a lifetime opportunity to host a weekly radio show on New York’s pre-eminent sports station, WFAN,” says Vice President of Programming, CBS RADIO New York and WFAN Operations Manager Mark Chernoff.

“We’ve seen a lot of talent in the New York area and hope that everyone who participated enjoyed the experience, and also found that it’s not as easy as it might seem to be a sports talk show host. Our own Joe Benigno began his radio journey through a WFAN contest back in 1995 and we’re excited at the prospect of finding another star in the making. We thank Buffalo Wild Wings and all of our sponsors for their participation in the WFAN Fantasy Phenom challenge.”

WFAN’s Fantasy Phenom Rules & More Info


One Comment

  1. steve says:

    how can you have a fair contest whenyou have a 22 year old just out of college with probably hundreds of contacts via facebook, twitter etc….winner should have been selected by a listener panel of about 5….also you can’t have mike ask the judges who they like after first 3 contestants go…..and then have judges give their choice after its over… joke

  2. vernon says:

    sussman…..hard voice to listen to….i’ll turn him off soon as he comes on.

  3. Fanny says:

    Otis is the winner. He keeps a smooth pace to his commentary. His voice has a clean clarity so you can understand his opinions. I’m tired of the hyped up on who knows what style. Give me an Otis. He’s got class.

  4. ellen makki says:

    So what if Gregg can call in his friends to vote for him. How is that cheating? How about the baseball teams that encourage their fans to vote for certain players for the All Star Game. I have A 19 year old son who is hoping to do this very same thing one day. Maybe if they hold auditions in NYC he could try out.

  5. Freddie Rivera says:

    I just got finish watching a recordings of the finalist from Friday and I have been a fan of WFAN for 20 years and listen to the FAN every day from my home office. “GREG” is the guy to beat. No doubt about it. It is not even close…….if this guy does not win, there is a problem. The kids just has “IT”.

  6. Susan says:


  7. Dave says:

    My votes for Al

  8. Teddy from NYC says:

    After rellistening to the entire segments for all five finalists, here is one man’s opinion: I think John and Patrick were dull. I think Otis was smooth but too quiet for Radio. I have nothing nice to say about Al except it was great that he got this far. As for Gregg, he was an original. A true talent in the making. I could see him as someone like Ryan Ruocco from ESPN NY- bringing a fresh new audiene of the next generation of listeners to the fan. With a little work, he could be incredible.

  9. b.salyers says:

    Voted for Gregg as he seemed like the most memorable personality. Good luck to all

  10. John says:

    Otis….t-t-t-t-t-t-t-t-t-tday junior… Have some confidence in what you’re saying!!1
    GO GREGG! He’s got it

  11. mvWest says:

    Al was very arrogant and cocky, like he had the job in the bag. I believe his “chummy” demeanor hurt him. Sussman was clearly the better candidate. If Al wins the fix is in and you watch how qucikly Susmann gets a job offer, although his comments about 1050 were unfrofessional….he needs to marue profressionally.

  12. matt says:

    who did patrick interview

  13. Ruben says:

    Who did Patrick interview? I missed him. I voted for Gregg

  14. Rick S Township of Washington says:

    Otis was the best, then John. Greg had an annoying voice and Al had an attitude.

  15. Blake from Westchester says:

    Gregg just graduated in May so the fact of the matter is that most students these days arent getting jobs the second they get out of school. I am completely dumbfounded by the fact that people can even say that this kid has no talent, it is pretty evident to everyone that he does. Please explain how if Gregg is so awful then how did he get this far in the competition? This kid has talent, everyone can see that!

  16. Terrible says:

    This whole thing is just a joke. Sussman clearly couldn’t get a job out of college because anyone could tell he is just AWFUL, so he resorted to getting a gig by having a bunch of people vote for him. Real great judge of talent.

  17. Freddy M says:

    Sussman getting it done. I’m not sure what kind of argument “Greg is using various social networking sites to get votes is” its the 21st century my friend. If he’s pulling in a small army to vote and browse Wfan’s site im sure Wfan is gonna be pumped about getting a young energetic passionate guy on the air. Here we go now gsuss, lets go babby

  18. roxanne says:

    i think otis is great – he thinks about the players and not the money the players are human just like us

  19. Nicole says:

    Philly Dave n this is the clip with Otis Harper on the show with ESPN2 MMA Co-host Franklin McNeil I think this is the right link

  20. Theresa says:

    I was at the show. Going first was the worst. He had the least amount of time to prepare. Everyone else had time to google the celebrity they were to interview and prepare their questions. Patrick had 1/2 hour, hardly seemed fair to me. He was the only one without notes. All of the other contestants knew what the judges were looking for after he went. My vote goes to him.

  21. Philly Dave says:

    Nicole I seen that internet show In The Game with BKS too you mean Otis Harper is on that sports show they call him O’Dawg The Stat Technician, that guy is good on that show I saw the one he did with Franklin McNeil from ESPN2 the MMA Host it was great here’s a link to check out

  22. Steve K says:

    Patrick was engaging, conversational, and his argument was spot on. His monologue established tone for a show introduction. He came across as knowledgeable and in tune with current ongoings across multiple local teams. He would make a good host

  23. Thereisnogodyoustupidcatholicretard says:

    Greg for president.

    All these other posers have no idea what theyre talking about

  24. ALLSTAR STEVE says:

    Sussman went “YARD” in this competition – his interview with Devin Harris was crisp, his monolgue was spot on, and his style was unique and held my interest as a listener. Let’s face it folks, Radio is about Entertainment value as well as sports knowledge and Gregg was the best of the bunch on both these fronts. Lots of potential here.

  25. Margie says:

    I agree with Norman. I think Patrick Crieghton did a great job and he had the least amount of time to prepare for the interview. He received my vote.

  26. Rich says:

    Gregg Sussman sounds like every other twenty year old trying to talk sports after a few red bull and vodkas at a New Jersey bar. Just because you went to broadcast school and learned how to remind the audience what station they’re listening to doesn’t mean you have the charisma or charm to hold an audience for 2+ hours.

    Al Renauto showed up with Francesa’s hairstyle, sunglasses, and arrogance.. Unfortunately, the only thing he forgot to bring was talent. Maybe one more piece of gold jewelry would have helped?

    My vote went to Otis, whose smooth delivery would lend itself nicely to a overnight/weekend slot.

  27. gary nyc says:

    gregg is cheating! can you believe this kid? what a horrible person he is, trying to live out his dream by calling for the support of friends, family, and fans. how dare he encourage loyal WFAN fans to vote. this contest is supposed to be private and unadvertised. such a conniving, cheap contestant. he should be instantly eliminated.

    do you hear what y’all are saying? CHEATING because he is internet saavy? leave the poor kid alone, he’s got talent. he’s got support. he’s got fans! he is the best of the 5 contestants, even the judges say so. so what if he has a large family/friend/fan base…did you see the shirts they wore at Bar A to support gregg? everyone’s love for the kid made me vote for him too, especially since he was the best of the bunch. charismatic, energetic, lively – go for the gold, sussman. you’ve got a future in this, kid…for sure

  28. Marcus says:

    John Shea won it, hands down !!! We need more Yankee-fan Hosts on the FAN. I’m sick of these Mets hosts who would not give you time to express your view the moment they find out that you are a Yankee fan.

  29. Norman from Mineola says:

    I liked Patty Creighton, like waht he had to say and i give him alot of credit for going first. Sussman I think could get annoying, Shea was ok but nothing special and Otis was my 2nd fav.

  30. Jessica says:

    Go John Shea!!!! No one has passion like he does!!! His knowledge on sports is broad, hes very personable, down to earth, entertaining, and brings a lot of very interesting views and perspectives to the radio. So he was a little nervous! Who wouldn’t be when getting a once and a lifetime shot at a really cool dream? Give Shea a shot! I know he can do wonders! Ive seen it before and I know he can do it again! He really deserves it, he is very talented and I know he would do a great job. In my opinion Greg if you have to cheat to win well that means that you’re desperately trying to make up for and solicit the audience that you don’t have behind you. Its sad and we know you can’t fake an audience if you were to actually have the job.

  31. Nicole says:

    Yeah Al I seen him on that show to he’s good on that In The Game with BKS show, he balances out the arguements and he’s pretty passionate on his online radio show

  32. braves4life says:

    Sussman was great, but not even the best host in his hometown. These Manalapan kids know their stuff.

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