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SBD/Issue 73/Sports Media
Rotten Fruit: Orange Bowl Earns Lowest Rating Ever For BCS Game
Published January 5, 2009
ABC earned a 12.6 overnight Nielsen rating for USC-Penn State in the Rose Bowl on New Year's Day, up 5.0% from a 12.0 for USC-Illinois last year. On Fox, the FedEx Orange Bowl in primetime on New Year's Day earned a 6.1/10 overnight, down 22.8% from a 7.9/13 for last year's Allstate Sugar Bowl featuring Georgia-Hawaii, which was Fox' first BCS bowl telecast in '08. On Friday night, Fox earned an 8.5/14 overnight rating for the Allstate Sugar Bowl featuring Utah's upset of Alabama. The 8.5 rating is up 1.2% from a 8.4/13 overnight for the comparable West Virginia-Oklahoma Tostitos Fiesta Bowl last year, which aired on a Wednesday night (THE DAILY). Fox Thursday led all broadcast networks in viewership among adults 18-49 with its coverage of the Virginia Tech-Cincinnati FedEx Orange Bowl. The net tied for second on the night in total viewers with NBC, trailing CBS (N.Y. TIMES, 1/3).
|Virginia Tech-Cincinnati Fails To Draw Viewers
As Fox Earns Lowest Rating For BCS Game
TOURNEY TALK: In Dallas, Barry Horn wrote of the Orange Bowl pulling its low rating, "Congratulations to savvy viewers who won't be pulled in to watching a meaningless college football game between two faceless teams even if the BCS letters are attached. ... How many more folks would have tuned in if it had been a playoff match-up ... on the road to crowning a real national champion?" (DALLASNEWS.com, 1/3). In DC, Michael Wilbon wrote, "The people who run college football had succeeded, finally, in killing New Year's Day. Instead of college playoff games commanding our attention, we were left with a bunch of BCS exhibitions that meant absolutely nothing" (WASHINGTON POST, 1/3).
TALENT SHOW: In Seattle, Gary Washburn wrote Fox "has done a quality job with the game telecasts" for the BCS. The net has an "impressive duo of studio experts in Barry Switzer and Jimmy Johnson and also analyst Charles Davis, whose expertise begs us to wonder why he isn't on a bigger stage" (SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER, 1/2). Meanwhile, in Denver, Dusty Saunders notes ABC play-by-play announcer Brent Musburger during the Rose Bowl "spent much of the second half giving philosophical dissertations while not following what was happening on the field." Musburger "treated the Rose Bowl like it was the setting for his personal TV talk show" (ROCKY MOUNTAIN NEWS, 1/5).