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Scott D. Pierce
Scott D. Pierce writes about television for the Salt Lake Tribune. Vice president of the Television Critics Associationn, he's covered TV in Utah since 1990.

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An Oscar statue is covered in plastic as preparations are made for the 86th Academy Awards in Los Angeles, Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2014. The Academy Awards will be held at the Dolby Theatre on Sunday, March 2. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP)
This weekend on TV: Ellen is the safe choice to host the Oscars

Seven years after she first hosted the Academy Awards, Ellen DeGeneres returns to headline Hollywood's biggest event (Sunday, 6:30 p.m., ABC/Ch. 4).

Why? Because she did a pretty good job the last time, and she's unlikely to spark controversy. After the weird (and unsuccessful) effort to bring in lots of young viewers with Seth MacFarlane a year ago, we're back to somebody safe.

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Friday on TV ...

NBA (5:30 p.m., ROOT): Utah Jazz at Cleveland Cavaliers

Women's college gymnastics (6 p.m., P112N): Washington at Utah

Undercover Boss (7 p.m., CBS/Ch. 2): Utah Jazz CEO Greg Miller goes under cover.

Last Man Standing (7 p.m., ABC/Ch. 4): The Baxters' dog causes trouble with the neighbors.

Men's college volleyball (7 p.m., BYUtv): USC at BYU

The Neighbors (7:30 p.m., ABC/Ch. 4): The Weavers throw an Oscars party.

Hawaii Five-O (8 p.m., CBS/Ch. 2): Danny's mother brings unexpected news.

Grimm (8 p.m., NBC/Ch. 5): Nick goes to Juliette for help.

Enlisted (8 p.m., Fox/Ch. 13): Pete is confronted by a woman he never broke up with before deploying to Afghanistan.

Helix (8 and 10 p.m., Syfy): Alan and Walker go on a dangerous mission.

Raising Hope (8:30 p.m., Fox/Ch. 13): Maw Maw has a new boyfriend (Tommy Chong).

Blue Bloods (9 p.m., CBS/Ch. 2): Danny and Baez investigate a kidnapping.

Saturday on TV ...

Women's college basketball (1 p.m., BYUtv): San Diego at BYU

Men's college basketball: Colorado at Utah (noon, P12N); BYU at at San Diego (2 p.m., ROOT); Utah State at San Jose State (6 p.m., ROOT);

ECHL (7 p.m., Ch. 2.2): Alaska Aces at Utah Grizzlies

Ripper Street (7 and 10 p.m., BBC America): A young woman with a deformity is fouind murdered at the hospital.

Men's college volleyball (7 p.m., BYUtv): Pepperdine at BYU

Deion's Family Playbook (8 p.m., OWN): Deion Sanders and his family star in this new reality show.

Hannibal (10 p.m., Ch. 30): In the second-season premiere, Will fights to prove his innocence.

Black Sails (10 and 11 p.m., Starz): Bonny takes a stand.

Saturday Night Live (10:30 p.m., NBC/Ch. 5): Jim Parsons hosts; Beck performs.

Sunday on TV ...

Women's college basketball (2 p.m. P12N): UCLA at Utah

NBA (4 p.m., ROOT): Utah Jazz at Indiana Pacers

The Amazing Race (7 p.m., CBS/Ch. 2): The teams - including Utahns Dave and Connor O'Leary - continue to race through China. And Mark Jackson and Mallory Ervin make a huge mistake.

The Walking Dead (7, 9 and 10:30 p.m., AMC): An enlightening mission springs from a request from one of the group members.

True Detective (10 p.m., HBO): Hart and Cohle investigate a string of disappearances.

Girls (11 p.m., HBO): Hannah gets a strange request from her mother.

Looking (11:30 p.m., HBO): Agustin drops out of his art show.

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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