Lately, there’s been a noticeable absence in the afternoons on 97.5 The Fanatic.
Mike Missanelli, the station’s popular drive-time host, hasn’t been on the air for over three weeks. And other than a couple of responses, he's also been absent on Twitter since last year, causing some to wonder when he's coming back.
— Patrick Irving (@googleboy79) February 21, 2017
— JENN (@PhillyLady215) February 20, 2017
— Patrick Becker (@patrickrbecker) February 20, 2017
So what happened to Missanelli?
According to sources at the station, Missanelli underwent major back surgery in December. Despite a recovery time of typically 6 to 8 weeks, Missanelli returned to the station in late January, but only made his back worse after about two weeks on the air.
“I was warned by my doctor that if I came back sitting in a 90-degree, angled chair I’d make the situation worse,” Missanelli said during his last show on Feb. 3.
“The truth is I didn’t give myself enough time to heal,” Missanelli said. “I want to give the audience 100 percent all the time, and I can’t do that right now.”
Sources say they expect Missanelli to return to the station sometime in March. Until then, Jason Myrtetus will continue to fill in alongside midday co-host Harry Mayes.
On the bright side, Missanelli was correct with the final on-air prediction he offered before taking his sabbatical — that the New England Patriots would win the Super Bowl. Myrtetus correctly guessed the final score, 34-28, but picked the Atlanta Falcons to win.