SBD/March 11, 2013/Media

CBS' Indiana-Michigan Tops Overnight Ratings For Weekend College Basketball Games

CBS’ telecast of Indiana-Michigan was the top-rated NCAA basketball game over the weekend, earning a 2.2 overnight Nielsen rating yesterday from 4:30-6:15pm ET. Duke’s blowout win over North Carolina ranked second, with ESPN earning a 2.0 overnight on Saturday night. That figure is down 36% from the net’s 3.1 overnight for the second regular-season Duke-UNC game last year (Austin Karp, Assistant Managing Editor).

TOP-RATED COLLEGE BASKETBALL GAMES OVER THE WEEKEND
DATE
NET
START (ET)
MATCHUP
RATING
3/10
CBS
4:30pm
Indiana-Michigan
2.2
3/9
ESPN
9:00pm
Duke-North Carolina
2.0
3/9
CBS
12:00pm
Florida-Kentucky
1.2
3/9
CBS
4:15pm
Notre Dame-Louisville
1.2
3/9
ESPN
6:00pm
Kansas-Baylor
1.2
3/10
CBS
2:15pm
MVC Championship: Creighton-Wichita State
1.0
3/9
CBS
2:15pm
UCLA-Washington
0.9
3/10
CBS
12:00pm
VCU-Temple
0.9
3/9
ESPN
12:00pm
Syracuse-Georgetown
0.9
3/10
ESPN
12:30pm
Illinois-Ohio State
0.9
   

HEIDI MOMENT: In St. Louis, Bryan Burwell notes CBS “pulled its national coverage” of the Creighton-Wichita State Missouri Valley Championship during the final minutes and “shifted most TV sets in the country to early stages of the Big 10 regular-season finale" between Indiana and Michigan. What most of the CBS audience “missed was a crazy final minute” when Wichita State “turned a 66-58 deficit with 3:21 remaining into a white-knuckle one-point Creighton lead with only 21 seconds remaining.” The move was because CBS “made the choice that bigger always is better.” MVC Commissioner Doug Elgin in a statement wrote, “It is disrespectful to our two teams and to every institution in our conference. This is our championship game for goodness sake. CBS needs to apologize.” Burwell writes there “ought to be a few large and embarrassing gulps going on at CBS” (ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 3/11).

THE NATURAL: In DC, Mark Giannotto writes former Virginia Tech coach Seth Greenberg has “become the studio face of ESPN’s college basketball coverage,” and he is in the “midst of a three-week stretch in which he’ll appear on one of the network’s platforms every day.” But it is the “manner in which he has approached this new venture, plunging himself full bore into an unfamiliar profession, that has suddenly turned him into a rising star at ESPN.” ESPN's Rece Davis said, "He's got a gift, but it's his wit that will separate him from others. Some coaches can't do it." Giannotto notes Greenberg’s “sardonic sense of humor has begun to shine through.” ESPN Senior Coordinating Producer Barry Sacks said that Greenberg's “nerves and comfort with the camera have never been a problem” (WASHINGTON POST, 3/11).

MR. SUNSHINE: The WALL STREET JOURNAL’s Stephen Moore profiled ESPN’s Dick Vitale for The Weekend Interview feature and wrote even Vitale’s “ardent fans admit that he's often the opposite of candid, and seldom has a negative word to say about anyone.” Vitale was "agitated” when he heard the criticism. He said, "I find that mind-boggling. If there's something happening in the game, I will tell you they didn't do this or do that right. But I'm doing games featuring hall of fame coaches -- Roy Williams, Mike Krzyzewski. The best of the best. What is there to rip those guys about? And the players are just college kids. They're playing with spirit -- they're not paid professional athletes." When asked about paying college players, Vitale said, "My feeling is with the millions that are being made by the schools and the billions for television rights, I definitely think the kids should get paid something -- a couple of hundred bucks a month at least. I mean, the money they're bringing in -- are you kidding me? I'll tell you, if someone is going to sell a jersey with my name on the back of it, I want to get paid" (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 3/10).

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