SBD/October 12, 2012/Media

Final Ratings: ABC Tops Primetime College Football Competition; Falcons Up In Atlanta

Primetime football dominated the TV schedule last Saturday night, with three games on broadcast TV, as well as games on ESPN and ESPN2. ABC’s Nebraska-Ohio State led the way with a 3.1 rating and 5.2 million viewers, winning the night among all programs. Fox’ West Virginia-Texas matchup ranked second with a 2.9 rating/4.6 million viewers. ESPN’s Georgia-South Carolina earned a 2.3 rating/4.0 million viewers, topping NBC’s Miami-Notre Dame matchup, which drew a 2.2 rating/3.7 million viewers. However, NBC's Notre Dame audience through three games is up 45% from last year (4.2 million viewers vs. 2.9 million). ESPN2’s  Florida State-NC State telecast earned a 0.8 rating/1.3 million viewers (Austin Karp, THE DAILY).

SEASON'S GREETINGS: The WALL STREET JOURNAL’s Stewart & Jannarone note Nielsen data shows TV viewing of “both cable and broadcast networks among adults under age 50 fell for the first two weeks of the new fall season, … a much weaker start than the industry experienced last year.” The major broadcast nets “lost an average of 15% of their viewers” in the 18-49 demo compared with the first two weeks of last season. In that same group, “viewership of ad-supported cable channels dropped 1%.” The early results are “promising for at least one network: NBC.” Its 18-49 audience is up 11%, “hinting at a nascent comeback for the network after years in the prime-time doldrums.” NBC has been “elevated by ‘Sunday Night Football,’ the highest-rated show on television.” The “worst hit” have been Fox and CBS, “each down around 25% in the 18-49 demographic that is most important to advertisers” (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 10/12).

EYEBALL BATTLE IN THE ATL: In Atlanta, Tim Tucker noted the Falcons’ TV ratings are “keeping pace with the team’s record.” The team has averaged a 23.7 local rating in Atlanta for their first five games, up from a 19.2 last year. Last Sunday’s Redskins-Falcons game on Fox averaged a 25.4 local rating, compared to a 16.8 rating for ESPN’s Georgia-South Carolina football game on Saturday night. TBS’ Cardinals-Braves NL Wild Card earned a 9.1 local rating last Friday and ESPN’s Georgia Tech-Clemson game on Saturday afternoon drew a 5.3 rating (AJC.com, 10/9).

NOTES: CBS’ telecast of Bills-49ers last Sunday began with a 33.4 local rating in Buffalo “when the game started around” 4:30pm ET. By “the time the game ended around” 7:15pm, the rating was down to 22.5 (ROCHESTER DEMOCRAT & CHRONICLE, 10/9)….YES Network’s postgame show after Wednesday night's Orioles-Yankees ALDS Game 3 averaged a 1.73 local rating, making it the highest-rated first-round playoff postgame show on the net since October '04 (YES)….Fox Deportes’ live sports news and information program “Central Fox” finished August and September as the most-viewed Spanish-language sports news program on cable TV (Fox).

The charts below list final Nielsen ratings from recent telecasts. All ratings listed are U.S. ratings. Select figures for Fox were unavailable at presstime.

TELECAST
DATE
NET
TIME (ET)
RAT.
VIEWERS (000)
"NFL on CBS":
Broncos-Patriots (81%)
10/7
CBS
4:15-7:30pm
14.5
n/a
"Sunday Night Football":
Chargers-Saints
10/7
NBC
8:32-11:38pm
11.2
18,306
"NFL on CBS": (regional)
10/7
CBS
1:00-4:15pm
7.6
n/a
"Football Night in America"
10/7
NBC
7:30-8:15pm
5.3
8,700
NCAA Football: Florida-LSU
10/6
CBS
3:30-7:00pm
4.6
n/a
NCAA Football: Nebraska-Ohio State
10/6
ABC
8:06-11:53pm
3.1
5,161
NCAA Football: West Virginia-Texas
10/6
Fox
7:03-10:41pm
2.9
4,555
NCAA Football: Miami-Notre Dame
10/6
NBC
7:30-11:00pm
2.2
3,680
"The NFL Today"
10/7
CBS
12:00-1:00pm
2.2
n/a
NCAA Football: (regional)
10/6
ABC
3:30-7:00pm
2.0
n/a
"College Football Today"
10/6
CBS
3:00-3:30pm
1.3
n/a
NCAA Football: Navy-Air Force
10/6
CBS
11:30am-3:00pm
1.1
n/a
PBR: Philadelphia Invitational (taped)
10/7
NBC
2:00-3:30pm
0.6
n/a
America's Cup World Series (taped)
10/7
NBC
4:30-6:00pm
0.6
n/a
"College Football Countdown"
10/6
ABC
3:00-3:30pm
0.5
n/a
Red Bull Signature Series:
Joy Ride (taped)
10/6
NBC
1:30-3:30pm
0.4
n/a
MLS: Fire-Red Bulls
10/6
NBC
3:30-6:00pm
0.4
n/a
WNBA Western Conference Finals:
Lynx-Sparks: Game 2
10/7
ABC
3:30-5:30pm
0.4
n/a
UCI Road Cycling World
Championships (taped)
10/7
NBC
3:30-4:30pm
0.4
n/a
TELECAST
DATE
NET
TIME (ET)
RAT.
VIEWERS (000)
"Monday Night Football":
Bears-Cowboys
10/1
ESPN
8:30-11:40pm
10.5
16,616
"Thursday Night Football":
Cardinals-Rams
10/4
NFLN
8:30-11:42pm
4.3
6,435
MLB AL Wild Card: Orioles-Rangers
10/5
TBS
8:49pm-12:08am
3.4
5,304
NASCAR Sprint Cup: Good Sam
Roadside Assistance 500 (Talladega)
10/7
ESPN
2:00-5:35pm
3.2
5,113
NCAA Football:
Georgia-South Carolina
10/6
ESPN
7:08-10:26pm
2.3
4,015
MLB NL Wild Card: Cardinals-Braves
10/5
TBS
5:00-8:44pm
2.6
3,990
MLB ALDS:
Yankees-Orioles: Game 1
10/7
TBS
8:31pm-12:22am
2.4
3,903
"Thursday Night Football Pre-Kick"
10/4
NFLN
8:00-8:30pm
2.3
3,351
MLB NLDS: Reds-Giants: Game 1
10/6
TBS
9:30pm-1:13am
1.9
3,119
MLB ALDS: A's-Tigers: Game 1
10/6
TBS
6:00-9:16pm
1.9
3,091

 

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