As someone close to the Daily Southtown just said, if you like to read about Mount Carmel football, you'll love the new Southtown. To save money, the Sun-Times Media Group is merging the biweekly Star into the Southtown. Painful but necessary, I suppose. And to save more money, or perhaps to make the Southtown less competitive with the flagship Sun-Times downtown, the Southtown is dropping pro sports. Like jumping off a cliff to avoid stampeding buffalo, it's a move that might make sense but still be suicide. The Southtown's pro beat writers held their own with the press box crews of the bigger dailies.
The no comments at the Southtown Tuesday went all the way up the chain of command, and I was finally directed to a corporate spokeswoman downtown who wasn't in.
UPDATE: I reached the Media Group's Tammy Chase Wednesday morning, and she said that in the future the Southtown's pro sports coverage will be picked up from other Media Group papers -- that is, from the Sun-Times. "We have a finite number of sports reporters," Chase said, reminding me that the merger will save money by shrinking the pool of reporters now at the two papers. "Our bread and butter is local news. If we want to survive, this is the way to go. People want local, local, local." The Media Group is estimating that the merger will save it $3 million. The two papers become one in mid-November, and the name of the combined paper has not been announced.