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Rose Bowl Up 10%, FOX BCS Games Up 13% (12% Overall)

2009bcschampionshipgame-010908With the College Football season, and therefore Bowl season, over, it’s time to take a quick look at how the ratings turned out for this year’s set of major games: Rose Bowl; Orange Bowl; Sugar Bowl; Fiesta Bowl and the National Championship.

Here’s how the respective telecast’s this year stack up to last season (numbers in parenthesis for the 2009 numbers indicate the change from the year prior–red represents a decrease, green represents an increase):

Rose Bowl (ABC)

  • 2009: Penn State vs. USC – 1/1/2009
    • Households – 11.7/21 (+6%)
    • Viewers – 20.60M (+10%/+1.85M)
    • Adults 18-49 – 6.5/20 (+3%)
  • 2008: Illinois vs. USC – 1/1/2008
    • Households – 11.0/19
    • Viewers – 18.75M
    • Adults 18-49 – 6.3/18

Orange Bowl (FOX)

  • 2009: Cincinnatti vs. Virginia Tech – 1/1/2009
    • Households – 5.4/9 (-27%)
    • Viewers – 9.32M (-22%/-2.64M)
    • Adults 18-49 – 3.0/8 (-30%)
  • 2008: Kansas vs. Virginia Tech – 1/3/2008
    • Households – 7.4/12
    • Viewers – 11.96M
    • Adults 18-49 – 4.3/12

Sugar Bowl (FOX)

  • 2009: Alabama vs. Utah – 1/2/2009
    • Households – 7.8/13 (+11%)
    • Viewers – 13.37M (+14%/+1.67M)
    • Adults 18-49 – 4.3/12 (-9%)
  • 2008: Hawaii vs. Georgia – 1/1/2008
    • Households – 7.0/12
    • Viewers – 11.70M
    • Adults 18-49 – 4.7/12

Fiesta Bowl (FOX)

  • 2009: Texas vs. Ohio State – 1/5/2009
    • Households – 10.4/17 (+35%)
    • Viewers – 17.06M (+40%/+4.90M)
    • Adults 18-49 – 6.0/16 (+36%)
  • 2008: West Virginia vs. Oklahoma – 1/2/2008
    • Households – 7.7/13
    • Viewers – 12.16M
    • Adults 18-49 – 4.4/12

BCS National Championship (FOX)

  • 2009: Florida vs. Oklahoma – 1/8/2009
    • Households – 15.8/25 (+10%)
    • Viewers – 26.77M (+16%/+3.70M)
    • Adults 18-49 – 9.5/25 (+16%)
  • 2008: LSU vs. Ohio State – 1/7/2008
    • Households – 14.4/22
    • Viewers – 23.07M
    • Adults 18-49 – 8.2/21

Overall, the four BCS games on Fox and the Rose Bowl on ABC averaged the following numbers this year: 10.2/17 HH rating/share, 17.42M viewers, 5.9/16 A18-49 rating/share.  In 2008, the same five games averaged the following numbers: 9.5/16 HH rating/share, 15.53M viewers, 5.6/15 A18-49 rating/share.  That represents a change of 8% among households, 12%/1.90M among viewers and 5% among adults 18-49.

If you’re interested in separating out the Rose Bowl from the four BCS bowls, here’s the average, and comparison, of the four FOX BCS games:

  • Households – 9.1/15 to 9.9/15 (+9%)
  • Viewers – 14.72M to 16.60M (+13%/+1.88M)
  • Adults 18-49 – 5.4/14 to 5.7/15 (+6%)

As you can see, despite the weak performance of this year’s Orange Bowl and the slight decrease among adults 18-49 for the Sugar Bowl, FOX still saw a solid increase in viewership over the year prior.

While I wish we could get a playoff system in college football, the sport remains very strong, as is evidenced by the ratings above.  Then again, it’s hard to imagine interest wouldn’t grow even more if there was a playoff system.  Is there really anyone out there that wouldn’t want to see a matchup between the Gators and Trojans (or even Utah, who afterall did go undefeated)?

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