HE'S GOT THE EYE OF THE IGER: USA TODAY's Rudy Martzke
reports that ESPN/ABC Sports President Steve Bornstein "is
among those considered successors" to Bob Iger as ABC
President. Martzke adds that ESPN's ratings improved 18%
for the second quarter of '98 to 1.27, with "SportsCenter"
up 13%. Both numbers are still down from '97. Martzke
notes that ESPN spokesperson Mike Soltys cited "increasing
competition" from other nets, but did not mention FSN's "Fox
Sports News" which was also up 13% this quarter. Fox Senior
VP/Media Relations Vince Wladika: "They (ESPN) have an
unhealthy preoccupation with us. ESPN should worry about
the menu for Monday Night Football" (USA TODAY, 7/17).
OLBERMANN'S FOX HUNT? In Tom Hoffarth asks, "Why was
Keith Olbermann touring the Fox Sports Net studios in
Century City earlier this week? Is he already beyond
miserable with his career in purgatory at MSNBC, even though
it gets him an occasional appearance on NBC's occasional
baseball coverage?" (L.A. DAILY NEWS, 7/17).
OTHER NOTES: Former Browns and Steelers Personnel Dir
Mike Lombardi will be the off-air information man for CBS's
"NFL Today" (USA TODAY, 7/17)....In Detroit, the Red Wings'
Stanley Cup video "Return to Hockeytown" produced by NHL
Productions, premiered last night at Detroit's Fox Theatre.
In Detroit, Helene St. James writes "perhaps the most
glaring omission" from the video is the "annual bloodfest"
with the Avalanche (FREE PRESS, 7/17)....TSN anchor Mike
Toth is leaving at the end of July (TORONTO STAR, 7/17).