UNSUPPORTED BROWSER
Football

BCS title game's TV rating hurt by rout

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) -- The BCS title game's television rating was up from last season, but the lopsided score kept viewership down.

Alabama's 42-14 rout over Notre Dame drew a 15.1 fast national rating Monday on ESPN, the network said Tuesday. The 26.4 million viewers were up 9 percent from last year's game, another blowout Crimson Tide victory, 21-0 over LSU.

But that's down from the 27.3 million for ESPN's first BCS championship two years ago, Auburn's win over Oregon that was decided in the final seconds. This year's game posted the second-largest audience in cable history behind the 2011 championship.

The matchup between traditional powerhouses in Alabama and Notre Dame created the potential for a record-setting audience. But once the Crimson Tide went up 28-0 by halftime, viewers had reason to skip the second half. Ten previous BCS title games drew a higher rating.

Ratings represent the percentage of U.S. homes with televisions tuned into a program. The game was on in 17.5 percent of homes that get ESPN.

The first half was watched by 20.4 percent, significantly higher than 17.9 for Auburn-Oregon. Typically viewership increases throughout a game if it is competitive. But on Monday, the rating peaked between 9 and 9:30 p.m. EST - midway through the first half - and decreased from there as Alabama pulled away.

ESPN executives were hopeful of a massive audience but warned that it probably wouldn't happen without a close game. CBS Corp. CEO Leslie Moonves acknowledged that reality at a media day Tuesday about the network's upcoming Super Bowl coverage.

"Hopefully we don't have a game like they had last night," he said.

Close

To continue enjoying content from the most trusted name is sports, please be sure to update your current bookmark.

Our updated web address is http://www.si.com.

To continue enjoying content from the most trusted name is sports, please be sure to update your current bookmark.

Just follow these 4 easy steps:

  1. Click the Chrome menu on the browser toolbar.
  2. Select Bookmarks.
  3. Select Bookmark manager.
  4. Locate your current Sports Illustrated bookmark, click the Organize menu, then select Edit. You can now easily update the web address of your Sports Illustrated bookmark.

    Our updated web address is http://www.si.com.

To continue enjoying content from the most trusted name is sports, please be sure to update your current bookmark.

Just follow these 2 easy steps:

  1. Click the Safari bookmark manager on the browser toolbar.
  2. This will open the Bookmarks Bar. In the Bookmarks Bar, select your Sports Illustrated bookmark and manually edit the Address field.

    Our updated web address is http://www.si.com.

To continue enjoying content from the most trusted name is sports, please be sure to update your current bookmark.

Just follow these 3 easy steps:

  1. Click the Firefox bookmark manager on the browser toolbar.
  2. Select Show All Bookmarks.
  3. This will open the library window. In the Library window, select your Sports Illustrated bookmark and manually edit the Location field.

    Our updated web address is http://www.si.com.
Don't Show This Again