Universal Television Enterprises is planning to pull the plug on its recently acquired talkshow “Pat Bullard” in mid-March. In as many markets as possible, the syndicator will try to replace the show with its other new talk-show, “Crook & Chase.”

On Friday, Universal put “Pat Bullard’s” staff on notice that production on the show would cease in February, with episodes airing through the February sweeps.

The daytime strip, which was purchased by Universal when it bought Multimedia Entertainment, was a victim of low ratings, with its national numbers consistently hovering at or below a 1.0 rating.

Universal sales executives were not available for comment, but sources said Bullard believed his talents were more suited to latenight than daytime. Universal is said to be interested in pursuing other projects with him.

Meanwhile, “Crook & Chase,” which began a slow rollout in February and now airs on about 55 stations, could go national. The show is moving next month from its Nashville home to L.A., where it will broadcast from CBS Television City. The talker recently was cleared on KCAL Los Angeles at 9 a.m. Universal is hoping the move will help the show attract more mainstream and high-profile guests.

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