Ratings Roundup: Fox’s Big Ten Championship Game Earns Best Rating Ever; NFL on CBS Hits 26-Year High for AFC Package

The 2013 Big Ten Championship Game – in which Michigan State toppled Ohio State – delivered a 7.9/14 national household rating/share with 13.9 million viewers, the highest-rated, most-watched ever for the event, surpassing the previous record set in 2011 (Michigan State vs. Wisconsin, 4.6/8 with 7.8 million viewers), according to Nielsen Fast Nationals. It is also FOX’s highest-rated college football telecast since the 2010 Fiesta Bowl (8.2/13,  13.8 million viewers), and it is projected to be FOX’s highest-rated, most-watched Saturday night since the NFL playoffs in January 2013.  The 2013 Big Ten Championship Game came in up 172% over last year’s edition which featured Nebraska and Wisconsin (2.9, 5.1 million viewers)…

…Although final numbers were not available for other Conference Championship telecasts, SportsMediaWatch has the full overnights roundup HERE.

Saturday’s Auburn/Missouri SEC Championship Game drew an 8.7 overnight rating on CBS, down 13% from Alabama/Georgia last year (10.0), but still the highest for a non-Alabama SEC Championship Game since CBS acquired the rights in 2001.

The Florida State/Duke ACC Championship Game earned a 3.8 overnight on ABC, up 171% from Florida State/Georgia Tech on ESPN last year (1.4) and the highest overnight for the game since Virginia Tech/Boston College in 2007 (4.2).

ABC earned a 5.2 overnight for  Oklahoma/Oklahoma State game, while what ended up being the defacto Big 12 championship between Texas and Baylor earned a 2.6 overnight on FOX opposite the SEC title game.

The Stanford/Arizona State Pac-12 Championship Game drew a 1.1 overnight on ESPN — down 67% from Stanford/UCLA on FOX last year (3.3).

The Fresno State/Utah State Mountain West Championship (at 10 PM ET on CBS), drew a 1.2 overnight…

…The previous Saturday, CBS’s coverage of Auburn’s epic Iron Bowl defeat of Alabama was the most watched college football game to date of the 2013 season, averaging 13.8 million viewers. The Iron Bowl earned an average preliminary national household rating/share of 8.2/17, up 242% from last year’s game (2.4/5). The 8.2/17 for Auburn-Alabama is the second highest-rated college football game of the 2013 season, behind CBS Sports’ coverage of Alabama-Texas A&M (8.6/19; 9/14/13). The Aubun Alabama game was followed by Alabama-Texas A&M (9/14/13 with 8.6/19 and 13.7 million viewers) and Alabama-LSU (11/9/13 with 6.9/12, 11.9 million viewers)…

…Through 13 weeks of the 2013 NFL regular-season, THE NFL ON CBS is averaging 18.8 million viewers (Persons 2+), a 6% increase over last year’s 17.8 million viewers.  This year’s 18.8 million viewers is the highest number of average viewers for the first 13 weeks of the season for the AFC television package in 26 years (As far back as CBS records go; 1987). Through 13 weeks of the 2013 NFL regular-season, THE NFL ON CBS has earned an average national household rating/share of 11.2/23, up 5% from last year’s 10.7/22.  This year’s 11.2/23 is the highest average rating for the first 13 weeks of the AFC television package in 19 years (1994).

…NFL games ranked as the three most watched show of the Thanksgiving week. The CBS Thanksgiving game (Raiders-Cowboys) was watched by an average of 31.7 million viewers topping all programs for the week (Nov. 25- Dec. 1) and ranking as the most-watched show of the fall TV season. The FOX Thanksgiving game (Packers-Lions) was the second most-watched show of the week with an average of 28.3 million viewers. The CBS Sunday national telecast (mostly Broncos-Chiefs) was the third most-watched show of the week with an average of 28.1 million viewers.  NFL programming accounted for eight of the top 10 shows of the week. NBC’s Steelers-Ravens Thanksgiving night game was the week’s most-watched primetime show averaging 21.1 million viewers and NBC’s Sunday Night Football (Giants-Redskins) drew an average of 17.7 million viewers. The three-game Thanksgiving Day average of 27.2 million viewers is the highest Thanksgiving Day average since 1998 (29.7 million for Steelers-Lions and Vikings-Cowboys)…

…November 2013 was FOX Sports 1’s highest-rated calendar month since its August launch, according to Nielsen Media Research. November (1-30) total day averaged 134,000 viewers to set a new FOX Sports 1 mark for a full calendar month, +17% over October (115,000), and +33% over September (134,000 vs. 101,000).  In prime time, November increased +113% over October (457,000 vs. 215,000) and +86% over September (457,000 vs. 246,000). The week of 11/25 is now the most-watched full week in FOX Sports 1 history, averaging 192,000 viewers total day, a +22% over the second most-watched week set just four weeks ago  (11/4, 157,000). Oregon State-Oregon college football game on 11/29 averaged 2,179,000 viewers and is now the most-watched telecast in FOX Sports 1 history, and marks the second time in three weeks that FOX Sports 1 has broken its own audience record (Oklahoma vs. Baylor on 11/7 attracted 2,110,000 viewers).  The game was also the most-watched sports event of the day on ad-supported cable television…

…Univision’s coverage of the World Cup draw on Friday, simulcast on Univision Deportes Network (UDN), delivered an average of 1.1 million total viewers and 562,000 Adults 18-49. That was good enough to top ESPN2’s broadcast of the event, which earned an average of489,000 viewers and 396,000 Adults 18-49, according to Nielsen Fast Nationals (Cynopsis Sports).

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