Is CBS courting Ryan Seacrest?

Seacrestmoonves’s Don Barrett, who knows the ins and outs of the local radio scene better than just about anyone, advances a theory that CBS is making a play for Ryan Seacrest once the host’s deal with Clear Channel (and KIIS-FM) expires in November.

Seacrest has a sweet deal with Clear Channel (see the 2008 press release here), in which he owns and sells a portion of his nationally syndicated radio show’s ad time. As part of his extensive deal with the company, Seacrest also hosts “American Top 40” (and sells ad time on that nationally syndicated countdown show as well).

But CBS has something that Clear Channel can’t offer: The chance to get back into the syndicated TV talk show game. Here’s what Barrett is hearing:

Ryan might leave his radio home at Clear Channel and jump ship to CBS. The move would be predicated on CBS’ interest in Ryan hosting an afternoon Oprah-type show for the start of the 2011 season. Ryan was very friendly with CBS president/ceo Les Moonves at a recent Lakers game. Some have suggested that they have already had conversations.

Part of the lure for Ryan would be an all-out production commitment to his daytime talk show – full production, massive promotion and a commitment from the network to make it work.

If CBS struck a deal with Seacrest, the host could base a new national show out of CBS Radio’s 97.1 KAMP-FM (“Amp Radio”), where Carson Daly currently hosts morning drive. Such a deal might be complicated, however, as Seacrest also has deals in place at Comcast Entertainment, where he hosts “E! News Daily,” and with 19 Entertainment, for whom he hosts “American Idol.”

Seacrest’s last stab at a daytime yakker, “On Air with Ryan Seacrest” (also the name of his KIIS-FM show), lasted only a few months in 2004.

(Photo via

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