Spike Eskin talks about professional and personal growth at Pizza with the Pros

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Spike Eskin speaks with students at Pizza with the Pros. - Photo via Grady Stefankiewicz

On Monday, Feb. 27, Pizza With the Pros welcomed the Vice President of Programming for WFAN and CBS Sports Radio, Spike Eskin.

Spike Eskin was a former program director at WIP before leaving to run their sister station, WFAN in New York City in 2021. He founded and co-hosts a popular Philadelphia 76ers podcast, “The Rights to Ricky Sanchez”, which was founded in 2013. In January 2024, Eskin was announced to become an afternoon drive co-host on SportsRadio 94WIP.

This is the first time that Eskin has been at Rowan University. He was supposed to be there when show host Craig Carton came last semester but had to miss due to hip replacement surgery.

Eskin credited his love for sports to his dad, Howard.

“I grew up around it. I liked sports a lot when I was younger and he brought me to everything. I was just sort of tagging along. I was around it so much that it just became regular to me,” said Eskin.

Howard currently works for FOX 29 News in Philadelphia and WIP-FM 94.1.

Eskin transferred his sophomore year to Syracuse University. He said that his love for sports slowly started to fade away during his time at Syracuse.

“I got burned out… very quick[ly], as Syracuse is very highly competitive. Everybody there wants to be a Sports Broadcaster and I found all those people to be annoying,” said Eskin.

Eskin loved to communicate and talk with people, so he pivoted to music radio, which he ended up doing for the first half of his career.

The first station that Eskin worked for was his college radio station, WJPZ. At the same time, he was an intern at WYSP, a Rock station in Philadelphia. When he graduated college, he continued to work for WYSP, with the goal of becoming the music director for the station. This goal was achieved just after three years.

He got the opportunity to be in charge when he worked at a station in Chicago. When his boss was fired, Eskin was promoted to assistant program director at just 30 years old. However, it didn’t go as he planned.

“I was a horrible boss when I was 30 because I had a very bad temper and I couldn’t understand anybody who didn’t work exactly like I did,” Eskin said.

Understanding how he was as a boss, Eskin realized that he needed to change who he was as a person. He changed his way of thinking and started to try and get the best out of everyone.

“The idea of getting the best out of everyone who worked for me was really awesome. When I changed, when I became more patient, when I sort of met people where they are, rather than trying to make them like me, try to figure out what people are good at and bring that out of them, then people are really dedicated to you and want to work for you,” Eskin said.

This change paid off, as now Eskin is the vice president of programming for two major stations: WFAN and CBS Sports Radio.

Eskin showed students what it’s like to notice problems with yourself and change them, to not only make a better career for yourself but to also be a better person.

Next week, Pizza With the Pros will welcome Philadelphia Phillies’ longtime public address announcer, Dan Baker.

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