Don Imus is losing his wingman
"He's been going home to his family early, every afternoon, day in and day out for 48 years," Imus deadpanned. "He has decided he now wants to spend less time with them. So beginning the week of May 9th, Charles will be in Arkansas fishing, alone, on the Bull Shoals Lake. . . . eating pork rind sandwiches and drinking Budweiser."
McCord's departure alters the foundation of the Imus show, where for more than four decades he and Imus developed one of radio's longest lasting partnerships.
McCord is leaving at a time when Imus's radio and TV ratings have been diverging.
His average Fox Business Network audience for the first quarter, according to Nielsen, was 65,000 viewers, down about 45% from 2010. He is no longer the network's No. 1 show, as others have gained viewers.
Imus has said on the air that his advertising revenue remains strong.
Meanwhile, his 770 AM WABC radio ratings have risen. In January, he had the third-ranked morning show in the market.
McCord's replacement would likely come from Fox Business Network, whose staff Imus integrates regularly into his program. Among those who have sat in for McCord has been news anchor Connell McShane.
The rest of the Imus team, including producer Bernard McGuirk, engineer Lou Ruffino, sportscaster Warner Wolf and comedians Rob Bartlett and Tony Powell, would remain.