Saturday Ratings: College Football, 48 Hours Mystery and SNL Reruns

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November 9th, 2008

Scoreboard ABC CBS FOX NBC
Total Viewers (million) 7.54 6.96 5.24 4.33
Rating/Share: Adults 18-49 2.5/8 1.5/4 1.8/5 1.5/5

While last night's Saturday Night Football college game on ABC didn't fare as well as last week's battle of then undefeated Texas versus (still) undefeated Texas Tech, it still was enough to win the night for ABC. Also this week I think a significant part of the country saw the Cal vs. USC matchup and not the Texas Tech vs. Oklahoma State matchup. Unfortunately we have no way to separate the numbers for the two games at this time.

Still, the numbers don't surprise me because while last week's game came down to the last second, this week's games were not close. With Penn State losing I'm now rooting for the stars to align in such a way that Texas and Texas Tech can play again in the national championship game.

48 Hours Mystery showed surprising strength for a Saturday for CBS, both in total viewers and the 18-49 demographic. And NBC showed strength among 18-49 year olds, at least for a Saturday, with a rerun of its Presidential Bash 2008 special from last Monday night.

On the weekends we usually rely on Marc Berman for data and I can't reconcile the data he has for the night for Fox in the table above, with the individual show data for Cops and America's Most Wanted (below) the math doesn't work, but, I'm just reporting what he has. We'll see the actual data tomorrow and can correct it then. But I'm not sure anyone would've noticed if I hadn't brought it up...

Full details:

Time Network Show Viewers (Millons) 18-49 Rating/Share
8:00 ABC Saturday Night Football Ok. State vs. Texas Tech(8p-11p) 7.54 2.5/8
CBS CSI: NY (R) 5.90 1.4/4
FOX Cops 5.80 2.0/6
NBC Knight Rider (R) 2.82 0.8/2
9:00 CBS Without a Trace (R) 6.94 1.4/4
FOX America's Most Wanted 5.49 1.9/6
NBC SNL Presidential Bash 2008 (R) 9p-11p 5.09 2.0/6
10:00 CBS 48 Hours Mystery 8.05 1.9/6

Shows are sorted by viewers in each time slot.

Nielsen TV Ratings: ©2008 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved. Source Marc Berman/Mediaweek.


Fast Affiliate Ratings: These first national ratings, including demographics, are available at approximately 11 AM (ET) the day after telecast, and are released to subscribing customers daily. These data, from the National People Meter sample, are strictly time-period information, based on the normal broadcast network feed, and include all programming on the affiliated stations, sometimes including network programming, sometimes not. The figures may include stations that did not air the entire network feed, as well as local news breaks or cutaways for local coverage or other programming. Fast Affiliate ratings are not as useful for live programs and are likely to differ significantly from the final results, because the data reflect normal broadcast feed patterns. For example, with a World Series game, Fast Affiliate Ratings would include whatever aired from 8-11PM on affiliates in the Pacific Time Zone, following the live football game, but not game coverage that begins at 5PM PT. The same would be true of Presidential debates as well as live award shows and breaking news reports.

Rating: Estimated percentage of the universe of TV households (or other specified group) tuned to a program in the average minute. Ratings are expressed as a percent.

Share (of Audience): The percent of households (or persons) using television who are tuned to a specific program, station or network in a specific area at a specific time. (See also, Rating, which represents tuning or viewing as a percent of the entire population being measured.)

Time Shifted Viewing – Program ratings for national sources are produced in three streams of data – Live, Live+Same Day (Live+SD) and Live+7 Day. Time shifted figures account for incremental viewing that takes place with DVRs which are currently in approximately 24.4% of all U.S. TV households. Live+Same Day (Live+SD) include viewing during the same broadcast day as the original telecast, with a cut-off of 3:00AM local time when meters transmit daily viewing to Nielsen for processing. Live+7 Day ratings include incremental viewing that takes place during the 7 days following a telecast.

For more information see Numbers 101.

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