Rose Bowl ratings soar as Texas wins
Longhorns' dramatic victory draws 35.6 million viewers
January 5, 2006
After nearly a month of endless hype, Wednesday night’s thrilling Rose Bowl game on ABC between Texas and USC actually lived up to the billing. And so, too, did its ratings.
According to final Nielsen ratings, ABC averaged 35.6 million viewers between 8:17 and 12:28 p.m. Wednesday night, a 66 percent jump over the 21.4 million who tuned in to watch last year’s BCS title game between USC and Oklahoma.
ABC also averaged an impressive 12.8 adults 18-49 rating, up 73 percent over last year’s 7.4.
The game was the most-watched NCAA championship game since at least 1991, when Nielsen records begin. The previous high was 30.1 million who watched Miami and Alabama in 1993.
The game was a doozey. Though USC fielded Heisman trophy winners Reggie Bush and Matt Leinart, Texas quarterback Vince Young was by far the best player on the field, racking up almost 500 total yards all by himself and scoring the go-ahead touchdown with 19 seconds left in the game.
The matchup of undefeated squads received almost unprecedented media coverage, coming after two years in which the BCS finale was marred by controversy over teams left out of the final game. Everyone agreed this year that USC and Texas, which had two of the country’s most prolific offenses, belonged.
For the night, ABC averaged an 11.0 rating and 30 share among 18-49s. NBC was second at 3.6/9, CBS third at 3.2/8, Fox fourth at 2.3/6, the WB fifth at 0.8/2 and UPN sixth at 0.7/2.
ABC’s coverage of the Rose Bowl easily led each hour Wednesday night among 18-49s, beginning with an 11.9 average rating during the 8 p.m. hour. NBC was second that hour with a 3.6 for a special The Biggest Loser, and CBS and Fox tied for third at 2.2, CBS for repeats of Still Standing and Yes, Dear and Fox for repeats of That ˜70s Show and Stacked.
At 9 p.m., ABC led as its average for the Rose Bowl jumped to a 12.3. NBC and CBS tied for second with a 3.6, NBC for the second half of its Loser special and CBS for a repeat of Criminal Minds.
And at 10 p.m., ABC continued to lead, averaging a 12.3 for the Texas-USC game. CBS was second that hour with a 3.8 average for a repeat of CSI: NY, NBC third with a 3.7 for a Law & Order rerun.
Among households, ABC led the night easily with a 21.1 average rating and 32 share. CBS finished second at 6.8/10, NBC third at 6.3/9, Fox fourth at 3.4/5, the WB sixth at 1.4/2 and UPN seventh at 1.2/2.
After nearly 18 years, it’s time to say good-bye
Yet more evidence native advertising doesn’t work
A new type of cord-cutting: Snipping broadband
Coming, the collapse of radio’s iHeartMedia
Weeklies: Surviving if not thriving in digital age
Tweeter in chief: How Trump could save Twitter
Shows Trump hates are seeing big ad gains
Broadcast vs. cable: How the top shows stack up
A sign that coughs at your cigarette smoke
The word: Time Inc. sale is imminent
Rundown: Which advertisers have jumped from YouTube
Media Life’s Digital Media Transparency Initiative
HBO does hard time with Dwayne Johnson
- Arun Kumar becomes chief data and marketing tech officer at IPG
- Jenny Campbell rises to managing director at 72andSunny
- Adam Crandall becomes director of strategy at mono
- Mark Wildman rises to EVP of partnerships at Westwood One
- Kevin Craig rises to SVP of newspaper relations at AMG/Parade
- Bill Corvalan becomes VP of West Coast partnerships at AllOver Media
- Richard Just becomes editor at The Washington Post Magazine
- Gemma Lawson rises to VP and design director at Nickelodeon
- Ashley Judd joins Epix' 'Berlin Station'
- Former NBC ad sales executive Robert Blackmore dies at age 90
This week’s broadcast ratings
This week’s cable ratings
This week’s top-rated movies, songs and books
This week’s daypart ratings
This month’s digital traffic data: December 2016
Ad sales rep for a digital-only magazine
Freelance media planner/buyer available for all markets
Wanted: Media buyer in Philadelphia
Paid social media planner wanted in Detroit
Opening for a media planner at a top OOH agency