For college football TV ratings nerds (like me), Saturday’s Week 3 action was an interesting test study in fans’ viewing habits and the power of branding.
The day was full of good games involving brand-name programs and, equally important, brand-name programs playing in different time slots and spread across different networks. Florida State at noon on ABC. Alabama in the afternoon slot on CBS, opposite Oregon and Nebraska on ABC. The prime time slot offered Notre Dame on NBC, Ohio State and Oklahoma on FOX and USC on ABC.
The results are in, and Alabama’s 48-43 defeat of Ole Miss won the day with a 5.4 rating, which doubled the same time slot from the same week a year ago (Auburn-LSU, 2.7). The 5.4 rating is the highest daytime number of the 2016 season thus far, and passed Florida State-Ole Miss on Labor Day night for the second-highest rated game in all time slots. (Texas-Notre Dame’s 7.0 remains king.)
That’s not to say CBS was the only winner of the day.
Louisville’s 63-20 beatdown of Florida State scored a 4.5, ABC’s highest-rated noon kick for a game this early in the season since 2005. Ratings for Oregon-Nebraska, Stanford-USC and other ESPN offerings were not immediately available.
Michigan State’s 36-28 win over Notre Dame was also a ratings winner for NBC.
FOX also scored high for Ohio State’s 45-24 bludgeoning of Oklahoma was one of the network’s most successful broadcasts in the package’s short history as well.
While CBS won the day — that The Eye had the distinction of showing the only top-level game that was actually competitive from stem to stern no doubt helped — Saturday was a good one for college football and its broadcasters across the board.
(HT Sports Media Watch)