via press release:
THE 2011 NCAA® DIVISION I MEN’S BASKETBALL CHAMPIONSHIP ON TBS, CBS, TNT AND truTV DELIVERS MOST-WATCHED TOURNAMENT SINCE 2005 AVERAGING 9.4 MILLION TOTAL VIEWERS
CBS Sports’ and Turner Sports’ exclusive live coverage of the 2011 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship across TBS, CBS, TNT and truTV is the most-watched tournament since 2005, averaging 9.4 million total viewers, +11% from 8.5 million total viewers for CBS Sports’ 2010 coverage.
The overall tournament average-to-date, including the FIRST FOUR®, is a 6.0/13 rating/share, +11% from a 5.4/12 for 2010, according to Nielsen Fast Nationals. The 6.0/13 is the highest average rating for the NCAA Tournament through the Sunday regional finals since a 6.3/14 in 2005.
Coverage of the regional finals on CBS on Sunday, March 27 averaged 12.6 million total viewers, +6% from 11.9 million viewers from CBS Sports’ coverage in 2010. This year’s 12.6 million is the highest viewer average for the Sunday regional finals since 2005 (UNC-Wisconsin; Michigan State-Kentucky – 2OT). Sunday’s regional finals earned a household rating/share of 7.6/16, even with 2010.
Source: Nielsen Media Research, based on Fast National Data, Live +SD data stream. 2011 NCAA Tournament Dates, include First Four telecast gross. Dates of NCAA Tournament: 2011 3/15/11 – 3/27/11 vs. 2010 3/18/10 – 3/27/10. 2011 averages based on weighted average of 4 telecast gross across CBS, TBS, TNT and truTV. Dates of the NCAA Tournament historical audiences, CBS 1994 through 2005 based on Live data. 2006 through 2010 based on Live + SD. 2003 based on CBS / ESPN average of First Round.