Kentucky vs. Wisconsin Across TBS, TNT & truTV Averages 22.6 Million Total Viewers; Most-Viewed National Semifinal Game in 19 Years
Kentucky/Wisconsin Generates Largest Audience for College Basketball Game Ever on Cable Television
NCAA March Madness Live Nets More Than Six Million Live Video Streams for National Semifinals
Turner Sports and CBS Sports’ exclusive coverage of last night’s NCAA Tournament National Semifinal – Duke vs. Michigan State and Kentucky vs. Wisconsin – across TBS, TNT and truTV reached 41.7 million total viewers (watched all of part of coverage) for an increase of 24% over last year, based on cumulative ratings information via Nielsen Fast Nationals. The Kentucky/Wisconsin game averaged 22.6 million total viewers (up 39% vs. 2014) to become the most-viewed National Semifinal game telecast in 19 years and the most-viewed college basketball game in cable television history. Last night’s Kentucky/Wisconsin telecast peaked with an average of 28.2 million total viewers and a 15.7 U.S. HH rating from 11-11:15 p.m. ET. The telecast delivered a 12.4/23 U.S. HH rating/share, up 35% over 2014.
Additional highlights include:
- The NCAA Final Four doubleheader generating an average of 18.9 million total viewers, up 35% over last year and the most-viewed National Semifinal coverage in 19 years. The corresponding 10.5/21 U.S. HH rating/share is up 31% vs. 2014.
- Duke/Michigan State averaging 15.3 million total viewers for a 31% increase over last year and the highest viewershipfor the game window in 10 years. The telecast’s 8.7/19 U.S. HH rating/share is an increase of 26% over 2014.
- The NCAA Tournament averaging 10.8 million total viewers through the National Semifinals to register the most-viewed tournament coverage in 22 years and a 6% increase over 2014. This year’s 6.7/14 U.S. HH rating/share is also up 6% vs. 2014.
- This year’s tournament delivering three of the top five most-viewed college basketball games in the history of cable television, with last night’s Kentucky/Wisconsin (22.6 million total viewers) and Duke/Michigan State (15.3 million total viewers) games surpassing last week’s Kentucky/Notre Dame (14.7 million total viewers) Elite Eight telecast.
Additionally, NCAA March Madness Live delivered a record-setting six million live video streams and 1.5 million live hours of consumption for Saturday’s National Semifinals, up 59% and 53%, respectively. NCAA March Madness Live has garnered more than 77 million live video streams and 16.8 million live hours of video consumption through Saturday’s National Semifinals, both all-time records. This year’s live streams are up 15% over last year, with live hours of video consumed up 17%.
The NCAA Tournament has grossed a record 306 million total social impressions across Facebook and Twitter through the second Thursday for a 36% increase over 2014.
Source: Nielsen Media Research, Arianna, Live +SD data stream. 3/17/15 – 4/4/15 vs. 3/18/15 – 4/5/15. 2014, 2013, 2012 and 2011 averages based on weighted average of 4 telecast gross across TBS, CBS, TNT and truTV. Historical audiences, CBS 1991 through 2005 based on Live data. Conviva, Adobe Analytics for digital metrics. Facebook Insights and Twitter for social analytics. Reach audience estimates based on watching six minutes or more of coverage.