Jeff Blumenthal at The Philadelphia Business Journal:

Eight CBS-owned television stations, including Channel 57 (WPSG-TV) in Philadelphia, will drop their affiliation with The CW and become independent in September.


What will be removed from Channel 57 is the national CW programming that airs Sundays through Fridays from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. That includes shows such as “All American,” “Riverdale” and a slew of programs based off DC Comics characters such as “The Flash.” …CBS will replace that with local programming, live sports and shows from across CBS parent company Paramount Global’s brands.

With regional sports networks struggling in recent years, some local television stations have begun cutting deals to bring MLB, NBA and NHL games to their broadcast airwaves.

In Philadelphia, the Phillies, 76ers and Flyers air their games on NBC Sports Philadelphia. NBC Universal, the Comcast Corp. (NASDAQ: CMCSA) subsidiary that runs the NBC regional sports networks, has been rumored to be pondering offering the RSNs through its Peacock streaming service or simply divesting them. That could create an opportunity for CBS to bid on local broadcast rights at some point.

This is interesting to think about. The thought, as Jeff mentions, is that NBC will ultimately go DTC (direct-to-consumer) and bring local sports to Peacock, getting rid of NBC Sports Philadelphia (and the other locals) entirely. But if CBS is gutting the CW programming, they essentially have a second television station to fill up, and there’s an opportunity to turn it into some kind of PHL17, where you can air various sporting events. For instance, if MLS didn’t put its entire product behind the Apple TV paywall, I could see Union games appearing on channel 57 instead. This is another avenue to consider if the regional sports networks in the major markets continue to disappear. Come September, CBS will have 14 flagship stations and 13 independent stations.

According to the PBJ story, channel 3 will continue to run newscasts on channel 57, which air at 10 p.m. daily and also on weekday mornings. I produced the 10 p.m. back in the day and it was basically a dry run for the 11 p.m. on CBS. Management did not give one one-millionth of an iota of a shit about the 10 p.m show.