Golf Update: PGA Tour Continues Red-Hot Start in the TV Ratings

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The 2012 PGA Tour season has been red hot in the television ratings as of late.

Final round coverage of the PGA Tour Northern Trust Open earned a 4.2 final rating and 6.234 million viewers on CBS February 19, up 83% in ratings and 77% in viewership from last year (2.3, 3.533M), and the highest rated, most-viewed edition of the event since 2003 (4.6, 6.521M, ABC).

The Northern Trust Open was the third straight PGA Tour final round telecast to have a double-digit increase in ratings and viewership compared to the previous year. The final round of the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am on February 12 (4.9, 7.380M) was up 113% in ratings and 115% in viewership from last year, and the Phoenix Open on February 5 (2.0, 3.069M) was up 11% and 14%, respectively.

The only dud this season was the Farmers Insurance Open, which suffered declines of 49% in ratings and 51% in viewership for final round coverage on January 29.

The first four PGA Tour events of the season on broadcast, all of which aired on CBS, averaged a 2.6 rating and 3.8 million viewers — up 24% and 19%, respectively from last year (2.1, 3.2M).

Final Ratings and Viewership For PGA Tour Telecasts This Season
With comparisons to last year.
* No year-to-year comparison available for third round of Northern Trust Open.

Date Event Round Net Rating vs. ’11 Viewers (000) vs. ’11
Sat., 1/28/12 Farmers’ Insurance Open Third CBS
1.0
-50%
1,374
-55%
Sun., 1/29/12 Final CBS
1.8
-49%
2,624
-51%
Sat., 2/4/12 Phoenix Open Third CBS
1.3
-24%
1,940
-21%
Sun., 2/5/12 Final CBS
2.0
+11%
3,069
+14%
Sat., 2/11/12 Pebble Beach National Pro-Am Third CBS
2.6
+63%
3,851
+70%
Sun., 2/12/12 Final CBS
4.9
+113%
7,380
+115%
Sat., 2/18/12 Northern Trust Open Third CBS
2.1
n/a
2,870
n/a
Sun., 2/19/12 Final CBS
4.2
+83%
6,234
+77%

(Numbers from Media Life Magazine, CBS Sports press release)

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