Francesa is host of the influential daily sports talk show formerly called Mike and the Mad Dog.
Born in Long Beach, Francesa began his career in sports with College and Pro Football Newsweekly. He was hired by CBS Sports in 1982 as a researcher focused on college sports, but execs were so impressed by his knowledge that he quickly moved up to a studio analyst in professional football and baseball. Throughout his time at CBS he pursued WFAN, believing that he would be a good radio host and started there as a weekend host for college football and basketball and occasional fill-in. Fans grew to like him so much that he was paired with the young, energetic Chris Russo (to balance out Francesa's slight dryness), and Mike and the Mad Dog was born. The immensely popular show lasted for nearly twenty years and became a staple for New York sports fans, but in 2008 Chris Russo decided to leave WFAN. Francesa continues to hold down the fort in their old time-frame with his new show Mike's On: Francesa on the FAN. Additionally, Franseca expanded to television, with his show Mike'd Up which aired from 2003 until 2011, but he can still be seen on the YES Network for his thoughts on the Yankees. New Yorkers tend to have a bit of a love-hate relationship with Francesa, and he can be somewhat controversial in his callousness toward his callers. [Image via Getty, with Chris Russo]