CBS wins with hoops, 'Race' and 'Boss'; NBC's 'Apprentice' up

CBS scored a convincing ratings victory Sunday, boosted by a college basketball overrun that helped funnel more viewers into ”The Amazing Race” and ”Undercover Boss.” Also on the upswing were NBC’s ”Celebrity Apprentice” and ABC’s ”Secret Millionaire.”

According to preliminary nationals from Nielsen, CBS dominating the early part of the evening, with the end of the Kentucky-North Carolina college basketball game bleeding about 17 minutes into primetime in much of the country. Ratings are particularly murky for the net’s programs following hoops action, with ”60 Minutes” averaging roughly a 3.0/9 in 18-49 and 13.7 million viewers overall, followed by ”The Amazing Race” (3.2/8 in 18-49, 10.8 million viewers overall), ”Undercover Boss” (3.1/8 in 18-49, 11.7 million viewers overall) and ”CSI: Miami” (2.7/8 in 18-49, 10.9 million viewers overall).

Fox ran second on the night among young adults, led by ”The Simpsons” (2.8/8 in 18-49, 6.1 million viewers overall), which was up vs. its most recent original episode, and a repeat ”Family Guy” (2.8/7 in 18-49, 5.6 million viewers overall). Also for the net, ”Bob’s Burgers” averaged a 2.2/6 in 18-49 and 4.6 million viewers overall at 8:30, and a special ”American Dad” at 9:30 p.m. earned a 2.5/7 in 18-49 and 5.0 million viewers overall.

NBC started slowly with ”Dateline” (0.6/2 in 18-49, 3.6 million viewers overall) and ”America’s Next Great Restaurant” (1.3/4 in 18-49, 3.7 million viewers overall) before surging at 9 p.m. with ”Celebrity Apprentice” (3.0/8 in 18-49, 8.5 million viewers overall), which hit season highs and was up vs. the comparable night a year ago; as it has in recent weeks, ”Apprentice” ruled the 10 o’clock hour in key demos, hitting a 3.5/10 in 18-49 at 10:30.

At ABC, ”America’s Funniest Home Videos” (1.6/5 in 18-49, 7.5 million viewers overall) was followed by ”Secret Millionaire” (2.7/8 in 18-49, 10.5 million viewers overall), which was up 8% week to week. The net then fell off the radar with encores of serialized dramas ”Desperate Housewives” (0.9/2 in 18-49, 4.1 million viewers overall) and ”Brothers and Sisters” (0.6/2 in 18-49, 2.7 million viewers overall).

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: CBS, 3.2/9; Fox, 2.2/6; NBC, 2.0/6; ABC, 1.4/4; Univision, 1.0/3.

In total viewers: CBS, 12.6 million; ABC, 6.2 million; NBC, 6.0 million; Fox, 4.8 million; Univision, 2.5 million.

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