BCS: Sugar Bowl Lowest Rated Since 1994

Posted by | January 9, 2012 at 1:46 PM

Ratings for the Sugar Bowl were the lowest in eighteen years and the third-lowest for any Bowl Championship Series telecast.

The 2012 Sugar Bowl, an overtime victory for #13 Michigan over #11 Virginia Tech, earned a 6.1 U.S. rating and 9.572 million viewers on ESPN Tuesday night — down 26% in ratings and 30% in viewership from last year (OSU/ARK: 8.2, 13.635M), and down 28% and 38%, respectively, from 2010 (FLA/CIN: 8.5, 15.533M, FOX).

The game ranks as the lowest rated Sugar Bowl since the 1993-94 season (FLA/WVU: 5.2, ABC), and the third-lowest rated BCS bowl of all time. Only the 2009 Orange Bowl (VT/CIN: 5.4, FOX) and the 2012 Orange Bowl (WVU/CLEM: 4.5, ESPN) earned lower numbers.

Keep in mind Tuesday’s game faced some unusual competition from political coverage on the cable news networks.

Ratings/Viewership For the Sugar Bowl
Past ten years
Asterisk (*) indicates National Championship Game

Season
Date
Game
Net
Rating
Viewers (000)
2011-12
Tue., 1/3/12 MICH 23, VT 20 ESPN
6.1
9,572
2010-11
Tue., 1/4/11 OSU 31, ARK 26 ESPN
8.2
13,635
2009-10
Fri., 1/1/10 UF 51, CIN 24 FOX
8.5
15,533
2008-09
Fri., 1/2/09 UTAH 31, ALA 17 FOX
7.8
13,369
2007-08
Tue., 1/1/08 UGA 41, HAW 10 FOX
7.0
11,702
2006-07
Wed., 1/3/07 LSU 41, ND 14 FOX
9.3
14,417
2005-06
Mon., 1/2/06 WVU 38, UGA 35 ABC
9.0
13,590
2004-05
Mon., 1/3/05 AUB 16, VT 13 ABC
9.5
14,198
2003-04
Sun., 1/4/04 LSU 21, OK 14* ABC
14.8
23,937
2002-03
Wed., 1/1/03 UGA 26, FSU 13 ABC
9.2
15,107
2001-02
Tue., 1/1/02 LSU 47, ILL 34 ABC
8.6
13,058

(This year’s numbers from ESPN)

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_KY7Q2GLSWBU3TH2XXLOCKVVXLY Sean OLeary

    Amazing that the 1994 Sugar Bowl did that rating against the 1994 Orange Bowl, aka the title game between Nebraska & Florida State that did an insane number — 18.0 rating on NBC.