Columbia-based media company Midlands Media Group recently announced a broadcast partnership between the Carolina Panthers and WUDE 94.3 The Dude. The Panthers will open their home season on Sunday, and fans will now be able to hear live local coverage throughout the season.
The partnership reinforces Midlands Media Group’s commitment to the local community through reliable information and engaging entertainment for its audience.
“We are extremely pleased to once again forge a broadcast partnership between the Panthers and The Dude,” said Eric Fiddleman, Carolina Panthers director of radio and television affiliations. “The station’s excellent signal, coupled with its strong reputation in the community, should provide an exceptional listening opportunity for Panthers and NFL fans, across the Midlands and beyond.”
The local company has been the Midlands’ leading independent media provider since 2016. The portfolio includes several radio stations and digital assets with a collective monthly audience of over 400,000.
“We are delighted to be the new Midlands radio affiliate for the Carolina Panthers. This is a big win for the Midlands audience and our advertisers who support the broadcast. Join us on 94.3 The Dude for every game and Root for our former Gamecocks cornerback Jaycee Horn and wide receiver Shi Smith. Go Panthers!” said Keith Stover, President and CEO of Midlands Media Group.
Carolina Panthers fans who tune in to 94.3 The Dude can expect an exciting entertainment experience with Panthers Radio Network live play-by-play. As a bonus, Carolina’s all-time great linebacker Luke Kuechly will also join the broadcast for seven games. Kuechly, a Panthers first-round pick in 2012, played eight seasons, winning seven Pro Bowls and five All-Pro nominations. He retired after the 2019 season.
The season opener kicks off at home on Sunday, and all eyes will be on the new starting quarterback as he takes on his old team. Baker Mayfield passed for over 14,000 yards with 92 touchdowns in four seasons with the Browns. He even took them to the playoffs in 2020, but his overall record in Cleveland as a starter was 29-30, and this offseason the decision was made to part ways.
He landed in Charlotte and beat incumbent Sam Darnold for the job during training camp at Wofford. Mayfield gives the Panthers a different look at the quarterback, someone with a big arm and mobility. But he is also prone to forcing passes. He threw 56 interceptions in 60 games.
The Panthers haven’t had a winning season since 2017, the last time they made the playoffs. They’ve won a total of 22 games over the past four seasons combined, so the pressure is on head coach Matt Rhule to make the playoffs as he enters his third season at the helm.