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California

Radio Host to Quit A.M. Show

Renan Almendarez Coello of the top-rated 'El Cucuy' plans to move to an afternoon slot on KSCA-FM.

January 28, 2003|Steve Carney | Special to the Times

Morning radio host Renan Almendarez Coello, who dominates his English- and Spanish-speaking competition in Southland ratings, is scheduled to announce today that he is leaving the program he has hosted for six years.

Friday's program will be his last as "El Cucuy de la Manana," or "the Morning Boogeyman," on KSCA-FM (101.9). Coello is moving to an afternoon show on the same station and also will try his hand at television and unspecified "other opportunities," said Victoria Lichtman, spokeswoman for Hispanic Broadcasting Corp., KSCA's parent. Last month the company won U.S. Justice Department approval to merge with Univision Communications Inc., the nation's largest Spanish-language television broadcaster.

"It's his choice, and he has really amazing opportunities that have been presented to him," Lichtman said. "He's reached about every goal you can dream of. He's making the decision to explore those opportunities." Coello couldn't be reached for comment.

Coello began topping the area ratings when he joined KSCA upon its conversion to a Spanish-language format. In the most recent Arbitron ratings, Coello attracted 6.8% of the morning audience, outdistancing his closest competitor, comedian Steve Harvey, who drew 5% on KKBT-FM (100.3). Coello's program also is syndicated to stations in New York, Washington, Las Vegas, San Francisco and Chicago.

Eddie "Piolin" Sotelo, a morning host on KLOK-AM in San Jose, who worked at stations in Santa Ana and Oxnard early in his career, will take over Coello's morning show, which airs weekdays from 5 to 11 a.m., Lichtman said.

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