2015 NCAA Tournament Scores Highest Average Viewership in 22 Years
Kentucky/Notre Dame Telecast Peaks with 19.7 Million Viewers from 10:45-11 p.m. ET
CBS Sports and Turner Sports’ exclusive coverage of the 2015 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship – across TBS, CBS, TNT and truTV – is delivering its highest average viewership in 22 years (since 1993). Through last night (Saturday, March 28) the NCAA Tournament is averaging 9.9 million total viewers, up 2% through the same period last year, based on Nielsen Fast National Audience data.
Last night’s thrilling Elite Eight game between Kentucky and Notre Dame on TBS averaged an 8.4/16 U.S. HH rating/share and 14.7 million total viewers to deliver the highest-rated and most-viewed program in the network’s history. The Kentucky/Notre Dame telecast — peaking with an 11.1/20 U.S. HH rating/share and 19.7 million total viewers from 10:45-11 p.m. ET — is also the highest-rated and most-viewed college basketball game ever on cable television.
The NCAA Tournament to date is averaging a 6.3/14 U.S. HH rating/share, up 3% over last year’s 6.1/13. The 6.3/14 is tied with 1996, 1997 and 1998 as the highest average rating to date for the Tournament in 21 years (7.2/17; 1994).
Coverage of last night’s games – Wisconsin/Arizona and Kentucky/Notre Dame – delivered the highest average viewership and rating for the Saturday Regional Finals in 10 years (since 2005). Saturday’s game coverage averaged 11.7 million viewers, up 34% from 2014, and a 6.8/13 rating/share, up 33% from last year.
Additionally, NCAA March Madness Live continues its record-setting pace with 67 million live video streams and 14 million live hours of video consumption through Saturday, up 12% and 13% over last year. Yesterday, NCAA March Madness Live delivered a record-setting 5.2 million live video streams and 1.2 million live hours, up 92% and 67%, respectively.
The NCAA Tournament has grossed a record 166 million total social impressions across Facebook and Twitter through the second Thursday for a 36% increase over 2014.