NBC Entertainment is going to use a comedian to introduce its primetime schedule for a week starting Tuesday night . . .
Jay Leno will cap his weeklong primetime performance with an appearance the night of March 25 on "The David Letterman Show," which is presumably what the exposure is designed to promote . . .
Leno will do a 30-second "top of the night" introduction at 8 p.m. on March 18, 19, 21 and 23. On March 20 and 24 he'll need only 20-second spots to introduce the evening schedule at 8:30 p.m. Leno will apparently rest on the 22nd . . .
John Miller, NBC Entertainment vice president in charge of advertising and promotion, said yesterday he thought "it was just a good week to do it. A mini-series will be running on another network and we'll have kind of a mix. It'll give viewers a chuckle, something a little bit different" . . .
Considering the state of its ratings this season, maybe ABC could use a comedian to announce its schedule every night of the year . . .
(Airwaves, that was not worthy of you) . . .
Speaking of comedians, Milton Berle shot a pilot this week for a sitcom called "Moscow and Vine." The 77-year-old Berle plays an ex-vaudevillian who co-owns a music store with a young Russian e'migre' . . .
The series, produced by Gaylord Television, will be syndicated next fall . . . and will mark Berle's first role in a regular TV sitcom . . .
CBS' Wednesday schedule continues to lag . . .
A couple of nights ago, "Fast Times" at 8 had a 12.4/19 and its follow-on, "Tough Cookies," dropped to 10.1/15 . . .
That left "Crazy Like a Fox" with a 10.9/16 up against "Dynasty" (22.6/34) and "The Equalizer" at 11.3/19 . . .
"Highway to Heaven" on NBC scored a 21.2/32 at 8 . . .
That was the episode that received criticism last week from Lithuanian, Estonian and Latvian groups, who complained that a neo-Nazi tormenting an Auschwitz survivor had been named "Jan Baltic" . . .
WRC reported yesterday the station had received two phone calls from "concerned" viewers after the broadcast . . .
New York Knicks center and ex-Hoya Patrick Ewing is featured in a new Anheuser-Busch Inc. alcohol moderation commercial, part of its "Know When To Say When" series . . .
Ewing joins Miami Dolphin Dan Marino and San Diego Padre Steve Garvey on the series, which will get extra exposure all this St. Patrick's Day weekend on the primetime network schedules . . .
"NBC's 60th Anniversary Celebration," a three-hour look at the company's heritage, will be broadcast on Monday, May 12 . . .
"Entertainment Tonight" got some good news yesterday. The syndicated show had been canceled by WABC in New York as of next September. The loss of the biggest TV market in the country had the producers -- Paramount Domestic Television and Video Programming -- worried about the future of the show as it entered its sixth season . . .
Yesterday, Paramount landed WOR, the New Jersey-based RKO station that serves the New York market and is picked up by many cable systems around the country . . . A spokesman said yesterday that its availability on Washington-area cable systems via WOR, starting in September, won't affect its status with WJLA here . . .
This being the time of year that network programmers are huddling in Hollywood (that's a little alliteration there to take your mind off all the ratings numbers this morning, TV Column fans) while deciding what goes on the fall schedules . . . it is also the time TV writers start hearing from series producers, most of whom seem to disappear for months on end during a regular season . . .
This week, it was Frank Cardea, coproducer with Columbia Pictures TV of the aforementioned "Crazy Like A Fox," which has been bounced around the CBS schedule ever since it lost its winning spot in the Sunday lineup to a regular network movie . . .
Earlier this week, CBS announced "Crazy" moves again, to Saturday at 8, starting April 5 . . .
Cardea says they have four original episodes ready to go in that time slot and he's "hopeful" the network will put the series into the summer rerun schedule . . .
"Hopefully, we'll be back on the fall schedule, too," said Cardea. "I think it's a strong show and I think CBS does so, also" . . .
No such worries at Aaron Spelling Productions, where they've apparently already got the word that "The Colbys," climbing steadily toward the Top Twenty in recent weeks, will be back for a second season on ABC . . . Also in the News
Figure filberts had to take the Nielsen ratings way past the decimal points, but CBS Sports did edge NBC in the ratings for college basketball's regular season, which ended last weekend . . .
Both networks had 22 regular season broadcasts. CBS ended up with a 4.573 Nielsen count, compared with a 4.559 for NBC. Translated, a mere 12,000 TV homes separated the networks . . .
CBS was down from a 4.7 average last year, while NBC was up from a 4.2 . . .
Nevertheless, CBS found something to crow about in the numbers . . .
CBS Sports spokesman Doug Richardson said "NBC has been bragging all year because they had the ACC, maybe the strongest conference in the country. They had 16 ACC games and we had five. But we still managed to beat them" . . .
And to cap what surely must be one of the slowest TV Columns in recent memory, let's give you those exciting morning network race figures for the week ending March 7!!! . . .
NBC's "Today" show chugged along in first, with a 5.8 Nielsen rating and a 25 percent audience share. ABC's "Good Morning America" was second with 5.6/24 and "CBS Morning News" trailed with a 3.0/13 . . .
(This column is starting to look like Al Einstein's blackboard at Princeton) . . .
"Today's" ratings were up 26 percent from the same week a year ago. GMA's were down 3 percent. And CBS was down 17 percent . . .