The best news I've heard in a while is that, although KTVX anchorman Phil Riesen suffered a brain aneurysm, he's expected to make a full recovery.
There's no need for eulogies here - thank goodness - but let's just say that Riesen is one of the factors in Ch. 4's rise to competitiveness in the past few years. Not the only factor, but a big one.It wasn't long ago that KTVX was not only a laughingstock in the local news market, it was also all but invisible. The station has now achieved parity, more or less, in the early evening newscasts. It's still a somewhat distant third at 10 p.m., but at least it's a respectable third instead of a mere blip in the ratings.
And Riesen has been there during Ch. 4's ascension into respectability.
But the job isn't over yet. So hurry back to finish it, Phil.ANCHORS AWEIGH: During Riesen's convalescence, both Jon DuPre and Brad Goode will be sitting in the anchor chair next to Kimberly Perkins.
DuPre, Ch. 4's weekend anchor, will fill in Mondays-Wednesdays. And Goode, who co-anchors KTVX's early morning newcasts, will work Thursdays and Fridays.
Perkins, of course, will continue to co-anchor the 5:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. broadcasts.KSL AND BYU: Brigham Young University and KSL have announced a unique marketing arrangement for Cougar football and basketball games.
In essence, the university and the broadcast company are combining forces in an effort to market BYU games.
Advertisers can now contact one entity - KSL/BYU Sports - that speaks for BYU, KSL-TV and KSL-radio.
"Our intent is that a customer who wants to advertise in BYU athletic events can deal with one source for broadcast and other marketing opportunities," said William Murdoch, KSL-TV's executive vice president and general manager.
It's those "other marketing opportunities" that will be most apparent to BYU fans.
"They will probably include banners inside the stadium, to a limited extent, public address announcements and scoreboard announcements and pregame activities," said Val Hale, BYU's assistant to the athletic director for public and media relations. "For year's we've had the biggest crowd in the state at our football and basketball games. There's been no way for advertisers to reach that crowd."
However, he promises that, unlike Jazz games, BYU games won't become one long commercial.
"We're not going to overdose on it," Hale said. "We don't want to interrupt the game or become annoying."
On the business end of the deal, it's groundbreaking because KSL and BYU will share the revenues from the venture.
In the past, the KSL-BYU contracts have been fairly standard. KSL pays BYU a set fee for the rights to broadcast the game, then sells the advertising.
"As far as we know, this cooperative approach to marketing broadcast rights for university athletics has not been tried before," said Glen Tuckett, BYU athletic director.
BYU games - particularly Cougar football games - are big business here in Utah. They're among the highest-rated programs broadcast locally.
What the deal probably won't affect is the number of BYU games to be aired. And it won't affect BYU's contracts with national broadcasters - the Cougars' games on ABC and ESPN are part of the College Football Association's contract and are outside the realm of the KSL-BYU contract."LEAP" WILL RETURN: Several callers have wondered about the future of NBC's "Quantum Leap." The series hasn't been seen in its regular Friday night time slot for several weeks.
No, the series has not been canceled. One of those pre-emptions was because of the outbreak of the war in the Persian Gulf (NBC shifted some of its Thursday night programs to Friday that week, bumping "Leap" off the air.)
Another pre-emption was KUTV's - the station put a local auto show on in its place. And last week the network offered up wrestling. (Pleeeease!)
However, this is not to say that "Quantum Leap's" future is secure. The ratings are, in a word, bad.
This is a guess - and only a guess - but it would be extremely surprising to see "Quantum Leap" return for another season.MORE TALK: Oprah Winfrey will be gabbing it up for several years to come. The host (and producer) of the top-rated daytime talk show just signed with King World to continue with the show through the 1994-95 season.
That's good news for Ch. 5, where the show is a huge hit in the afternoon around here.
And it may have something to do with the fact that her acting career hasn't quite gone the way she'd hoped lately, either in television or movies.SAD NEWS: Steve Shaw, who was once a regular on "Knots Landing" and has made several guest appearances in the past few seasons, won't be returning. Sadly, the actor was killed in a car accident on Dec. 5.
Shaw played Eric Fairgate, who was Karen's son, Michael's brother and Linda's ex-husband.
His death was the second to strike "Knots" this season. Executive producer Lawrence Kasha died of brain cancer in September.`FLASH' NEWS: When CBS Entertainment President Jeff Sagansky promised that the very expensive series "The Flash" would remain on Thursday nights come heck, high water, "The Cosby Show" or "The Simpsons," not many people believed him.
Sagansky did move "The Flash" back a half hour to avoid Bill and Bart, but he's stuck with the show on Thursdays despite poor ratings.
Finally, he appears ready to make a move. "The Flash" will get a tryout on Wednesday at 7 p.m. on Feb. 27. If the ratings improve, it may end up being a permanent move.
In the episode scheduled for that date, the evil Pike (Michael Nader), who appeared in the two-hour "Flash" pilot, returns. His attack on the Flash sends the superhero (John Wesley Shipp) into a time warp and 10 years into the future.