Orange Bowl juicy for ABC

Morning Ratings Flash - Rick Kissell

NBC’s “Scrubs” enjoyed a good return to the sked Tuesday night but ABC dominated the ratings race with its coverage of college football’s Orange Bowl between Penn State and Florida State.

Alphabet affils averaged a 6.2 rating/15 share in adults 18-49 and 18.7 million viewers overall from 8 to 11 p.m. for the football game, which didn’t end until nearly 1 a.m. in the East. Triple overtime contest averaged a 12.5 household rating/21 share in Nielsen’s metered-market overnights, a 21% improvement over the 10.3/15 a year ago for the comparable Auburn-Virginia Tech matchup in the Sugar Bowl.

NBC was second in demos with its all-original lineup, led by 10 p.m. drama “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” (5.5/14 in 18-49, 15.2 million viewers overall). Also, “Fear Factor” had its best showing since returning to the sked last month (3.2/8 in 18-49, 8.2 million viewers overall). Best news for the Peacock, though, was the nice start for “Scrubs,” which aired a new episode for the first time since being nominated for an Emmy last summer; skein averaged a 3.8/9 in adults 18-49 and 7.8 million viewers overall at 9 (its best result to date in the slot) and a second firstrun seg scored a 4.1/7 in the demo and 7.9 million viewers.

CBS went with another night of all crime programming, with two hours of “NCIS” averaging a solid 3.3/8 in 18-49 and 12.4 million viewers overall. A special “48 Hours Mystery” (2.8/7 in 18-49, 8.5 million viewers overall) closed out the night.

Fox ran fourth with repeats of “Bones” (2.5/6 in 18-49, 6.6 million viewers overall) and “House” (3.2/8 in 18-49, 8.5 million viewers overall).

Note: Nielsen has begun including same-day DVR playback into its preliminary national report every morning. Numbers cited now represent live viewing plus same-day playback.

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: ABC, 6.2/15; NBC, 4.2/10; CBS, 3.1/8; Fox, 2.9/7; UPN, 1.6/4; WB, 1.2/3; UPN, 1.2/3.

In total viewers:ABC, 18.7 million; CBS, 11.1 million; NBC, 10.4 million; Fox, 7.5 million; UPN, 3.2 million; WB, 2.8 million.

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