After weeks of high expectations, Alabama’s 42-14 blowout of Notre Dame in the BCS title game earned run-of-the-mill numbers on ESPN.
The Alabama/Notre Dame BCS National Championship Game drew a 15.7 overnight rating on ESPN Monday night, up 14% from Alabama/Louisiana State last year (13.8), but down 3% from Auburn/Oregon in 2011 (16.1).
The 15.7 is the second-lowest for the BCS title game over the past five seasons, and ranks tenth out of the 15 national championship games of the BCS era.
Monday’s game was widely expected to challenge the 2006 Texas/Southern Cal Rose Bowl as the highest rated game of the BCS era. The 2006 game drew a 22.7 overnight.
The uncompetitive nature of the game surely impacted the numbers. Other routs in the national title game have also struggled in the ratings. Alabama’s 21-0 shutout of LSU last year earned a record-low 13.8 overnight and USC’s 36-point annihilation of Oklahoma earned a 14.7 on ABC in 2005.
With that said, the 2007 championship game between Florida and Ohio State, with a final score that was almost identical to Monday’s game, earned a much stronger 19.1 overnight on FOX.
Locally, Monday’s game drew a 55.1 rating in Birmingham (AL) — down 10% from Alabama/LSU last year (61.2), down 18% from Auburn/Oregon in 2011 (67.0), and also down 18% from Alabama/Texas on ABC in 2010 (67.4).
Overnight Ratings For BCS National Championship Game
(Monday’s numbers from ESPN Media Zone)