NBC Not Seeing Uptick For Notre Dame Football Despite Program's Strong Season
Notre Dame enters this weekend 8-1 and ranked No. 3 in the country, but NBC could see a viewership decline for the Fighting Irish's football games this season. With one telecast remaining -- Nov. 18 against Navy -- NBC's five broadcasts have averaged 2.7 million viewers, just below last year’s 2.8 million viewers. It would be NBC’s lowest mark since ’11 (2.6 million viewers). Excluded from NBC’s figures is the Sept. 20 game against Miami (Ohio), which aired on NBCSN. Some traditionally strong matchups on NBC were lower this year -- the USC-Notre Dame primetime game on Oct. 21 (2.99 million viewers) was the net's lowest audience for that game since 2.46 million viewers in ’07. NBC, which airs ND home games, carries that matchup every other year. ESPN has not yet been a big beneficiary of Notre Dame games either, as no Notre Dame game on its networks ranks among the net’s 15-best college football audiences this season to date. That is likely to change, however, with this weekend’s highly-touted matchup against No. 7 Miami on ABC in primetime.