It couldn’t match last year’s impressive numbers, but college football’s Bowl Championship Series title game was a ratings winner Monday night.
NBC, meanwhile, scored again with “American Gladiators” as it moved to its regular timeslot, and ABC did OK with the launch of its “Dancing With the Stars” spinoff.
According to Nielsen nationals that include same-night DVR playback, Louisiana State’s 38-24 victory over Ohio State in college football’s championship contest earned an 8.2 rating/21 share in adults 18-49 and 23.07 million viewers overall to dominate its primetime competish.
Although Fox won all four nights of its BCS games, this wasn’t the best year for matchups as there were a couple of blowouts and games featuring teams without much marquee value (Hawaii, Kansas, Virginia Tech).
That lack of momentum likely hurt the championship game, itself hampered by a team from a small state (just 1.9 million households in Louisiana). And with the game set in New Orleans, the net didn’t benefit from having a large rating from the host market, either.
This year’s game was down from last year’s Florida-Ohio State matchup (10.6/26, 28.80m), which came in Fox’s first year of airing the top bowl contests.
But don’t shed too many tears for Fox Sports, which ended the season as the top NFL broadcaster and is poised for boffo ratings Sunday afternoon for its Dallas Cowboys-New York Giants NFL playoff matchup. Net also has the NFC Championship and Super Bowl in primetime in coming weeks.
Among entertainment programs Monday, NBC’s “American Gladiators” (4.8/12 in 18-49, 10.91 million viewers overall) was the top draw in demos despite facing the similarly male-skewing football game on Fox.
“Gladiators” was down as expected from its two-hour preview seg on Sunday but logged the net’s best perf in the time period in 10 months.
Also for NBC, “Deal or No Deal” was the top nonsports choice at 9 o’clock (3.6/8, 10.91m), and the season preem of drama “Medium” held the same position at 10 (3.3/8, 9.60m).
Over at ABC, “Dance War: Bruno vs. Carrie Ann” averaged a 3.0/7 in 18-49 and 11 million viewers overall from 8 to 10 p.m. These numbers aren’t close to what “Dancing With the Stars” averaged in the timeslot during the fall, but the net likely would be happy to see numbers in this range throughout the show’s six-week run.
And in a good sign, “Dance War” built from its first half-hour to its last. Show features two of the “Dancing With the Stars” judges coaching competing teams of singer-dancers.