Florida Station Explains Decision Not to Air Local Football

By Andrew Gauthier 

St. Petersburg Times

Rich Pegram, general manager at local ABC affiliate WFTS Ch. 28, said he’s gotten “many e-mails” from USF fans upset that next week’s game against Louisville won’t be shown, with Ohio State-Michigan being shown instead.

“They’re obviously very angry,” Pegram said Thursday, explaining that the station was asked by ABC to carry the national Ohio State-Michigan game rather than the USF game, even though the local game would likely carry higher ratings.


“It’s not a financial decision. We would make more money with USF because it’d be higher-rated,” Pegram said. “It purely is a matter of supporting the network. We are an ABC affiliate, and ABC asked us to carry Ohio State-Michigan. We could pre-empt that (and run USF), but quite frankly, if we carried USF, we’d get jus as many e-mails from the Ohio State and Michigan folks.”

The USF-Louisville game will be broadcast locally on Bright House Sports Network, which reached more than a million customers locally, but for fans who don’t have Bright House for cable, they’ll have to turn to ESPN’s Game Plan pay-per-view option or elsewhere. More…