SBD/April 10, 2013/Media

Women's NCAA Championship Overnight On ESPN Down 19% With UConn's 33-Point Win

ESPN earned a 2.1 overnight Nielsen rating for UConn’s 93-60 win over Louisville in the NCAA Women’s Basketball Championship, down 19% from a 2.6 overnight for Baylor’s win over Notre Dame last year. The 33-point victory was by far the biggest margin in women's title game history (previous high was 23 in '87). UConn-Louisville is also down 9% from a 2.3 overnight for Texas A&M-Notre Dame in ’11. UConn’s last title in ’10 (against Stanford) drew a 2.6 overnight. The Louisville market drew a 20.7 local rating for the game, marking the highest women’s tourney rating in the market on record. Meanwhile, Hartford-New Haven scored a 22.5 local rating, marking the best for that market in nine years (dating back to the school’s ’04 win) (Austin Karp, Assistant Managing Editor).

A FEW SHINING MOMENTS: The NCAA Tournament averaged a 6.7 fast-national Nielsen rating and 10.7 million viewers across CBS, TBS, TNT and truTV, marking the tourney’s best rating since '05 and best viewership since '94. The four-network averages also were up 10% and 11%, respectively, from '12. Monday night's Louisville-Michigan national championship finished with a 14.0 rating and 23.4 million viewers, up 15% and 12%, respectively, from the Kentucky-Kansas matchup last year (CBS/Turner). ESPN’s Michael Wilbon said Louisville-Michigan was a “spectacular game” and the “season needed it." Wilbon: "This season -- I don’t care what people think -- has been a 3 on the 1-10 scale and college basketball in general has just flattened out. College basketball needed this game, and they got a thriller in the championship.” ESPN's Tony Kornheiser said, “I thought it was a season saver. ... The rating was ... way higher than any NBA Finals game last year. So a lot of people tuned in and they got exactly what they wanted” (“PTI,” ESPN, 4/9). ESPN’s Pablo Torre said, “This tournament desperately, desperately needed this game” (“Around The Horn,” ESPN, 4/9).

NCAA MEN'S BASKETBALL NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP GAME TREND
YEAR
NET
RAT.
VIEWERS (000)
MATCHUP
'13
CBS
14.0
23,400
Louisville-Michigan
'12
CBS
12.3
20,900
Kentucky-Kansas
'11
CBS
11.7
20,100
UConn-Butler
'10
CBS
14.2
23,944
Duke-Butler
'09
CBS
10.8
17,649
North Carolina-Michigan State
'08
CBS
12.1
19,501
Kansas-Memphis
'07
CBS
12.2
19,563
Florida-Ohio State
'06
CBS
11.2
17,543
Florida-UCLA
'05
CBS
15.0
23,895
North Carolina-Illinois
'04
CBS
11.0
17,088
UConn-Georgia Tech

 

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