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Sports-inclined San Diegans, invigorated by San Diego State’s convincing NCAA tournament win over Oklahoma last night, tuned in at 9:00 AM this morning to get their March Madness fix. Despite channel listings that showed the Virginia Commonwealth versus Michigan game, viewers tuning to CBS 8 in San Diego were instead treated to a revolutionary war cartoon called Liberty’s Kids.
Hoops fans on social media were understandably perplexed. (Note: Twitter’s embed code timestamps the following tweets seven hours ahead.)
It’s 10 minutes to tipoff of #Michigan-VCU, but the San Diego CBS affiliate is still showing cartoons. @cbs8 wake up!
— BCS Guru (@BCSGuru) March 23, 2013
The twitter account for @CBS8 remained silent and calls to the KFMB-TV switchboard went unanswered. CBS8 Senior Producer Louis Weiner stepped into the void with this update:
Your Directv guide is wrong. CBS 8 in San Diego will join NCAA basketball in progress at 10am following FCC mandated children’s programming
— Louis Weiner (@NewsManLou) March 23, 2013
An official explanation! The FCC excuse did little (nothing) to mollify the masses, who reported that other Pacific Time Zone cities were happily watching hoops.
So everyone can figure this out except for one station in SD. So pathetic. RT @sportsguy06: @sdutposner @utpadres @cbs8 On in Las Vegas…
— Jay Posner (@sdutPosner) March 23, 2013
Former Chargers and NFL executive Jim Steeg found that the FCC mandate hadn’t prevented another channel from airing sports at 9:00 AM:
@sdutposner @cbs8 don’t fret there is figure skating on KNSD…what is worse is false advertising on channel listings
— Jim Steeg (@jimsteeg) March 23, 2013
VOSD’s Andrew Keatts mocked luddites still using cable television, pointing out that the game was available online:
@blockgreg @cbs8 @ebruvold Can’t y’all hook up a computer to your TV? NCAA.com has you covered.
— Andrew Keatts (@andy_keatts) March 23, 2013
That the game could be seen on the same devices people were using to complain did nothing to calm the fury. They want their sports on TV!
@bcsguru @cbs8 this is garbage! The only market in the country not watching the game…
— Jeremy Hays (@GoneQuackers13) March 23, 2013
Get your crap together @cbs8! Seriously, why am I watching cartoons when VCU-MICH is on?
— Kyle Petzinger (@kylepetz) March 23, 2013
@cbs8 YOU’RE FIRED
— Justin Melim (@Justin_pJcl) March 23, 2013
— Robert York (@rxy118) March 23, 2013
As the clock struck 10:00, the VCU-Michigan game was abruptly joined in progress with two minutes to go in the first half. The twittering public remained baffled at KFMB’s programming choice.
Can’t believe you guys showed cartoons for a hour while the game was on@cbs8
— Tyeena Lombardi (@Tyeena) March 23, 2013
@ourand_sbj @sdutposner @cbs8 A notice on the website, or even a simple tweet, would have been appreciated.
— Peter Wallace (@PCWallace) March 23, 2013
For the record, San Diego’s @cbs8 was the only CBS affiliate in a major market to preempt the NCAA Tournament today.
— John Ourand (@Ourand_SBJ) March 23, 2013
To see the frustration on full display, check out the search string of updates aimed @CBS8‘s way.
Beau Lynott is a contributor to Voice of San Diego. Follow him on Twitter @lemonverbena_ or email email@example.com.