2008 Year in Review: Sports Ratings Roundup

David Morgan-Mar called me a “webcomics reviewer” this weekend. While webcomics reviews are what I do with my “webcomics” tag, I don’t prefer to brand myself with that brush, and I don’t want to go down the path of an Eric Burns(-White) of becoming primarily known for webcomics while wanting to branch into more fields. So with that in mind, allow me to prove just how wrong Morgan-Mar really is!

Last year – well, really late two years ago – Sports Media Watch had what was, to me, one of the most useful posts of the year, including lists of the top-rated games on cable, the top-rated non-NFL games on cable, and every verifiable sports rating over 5.0.

Sadly, SMW did no such thing this year – especially sad considering the addition of the Olympics to the rating comparison – so I’m going to do so myself. And I’m going to do one better and include every rating over 3.0, and some over 2.0, to ever be recorded by SMW (and some other sources) over the course of the year, AND color-code it for ease of readability. (In so doing I may be risking Nielsen getting all up in my ass about it and needing to downsize this post in the future, based on their behavior with certain others.) I think it’ll be interesting to see the trends. Get ready for a lot of scrolling! Let’s see if I can force a jump and save you people reading Da Blog proper (who could probably care less) some trouble…

Each row is colored as follows: Blue=NFL; Yellow=Olympics; Cyan=College football; Purple=Baseball; Red=NBA; Orange=College basketball; Green=Golf; Brown with (hopefully) white text=NASCAR. All other sports are white. Names of events in bold italics are championships, just plain bold events are part of championship tournaments (BCS bowls for college football). Olympics events are marked in bold italics if and only if they involve Michael Phelps. Other Olympics primetime coverage is in bold. The Daytona 500 is in bold italics and Chase races are in bold. Networks in bold are cable networks. Cable ratings are national ratings unless SMW doesn’t have those.

NFL complete except one preseason game and Thanksgiving games on FOX and CBS. Also, singleheaders and Game 1 of doubleheaders are available only for Weeks 2, 3, and 9. Studio show ratings are included if they are over 2.5 and came from Weeks 1-3. The OT ratings are only available for Week 1, and the Fox and CBS pregame shows are only available for Weeks 2 and 3. College football complete except games not on broadcast or ESPN (all games not on broadcast or ESPN assumed to be too small for this chart, all games on Versus known to be), and some bowls. Also, based on this, I suspect SMW’s numbers for this year’s bowl ratings are inaccurate. Last year’s Orange Bowl and non-BCS bowl ratings courtesy BCSfootball.org.

Olympics reflect NBC primetime coverage only (non-NBC coverage is assumed to be too small for this chart), plus Team USA’s basketball game against China to start the basketball tournament, and should be taken with a grain of salt as ratings could be chopped up any way NBC wants. Also, trials do not include MSNBC numbers (but they are assumed to be too small for this chart) or any events after July 6. Baseball complete except for ESPN games after July 6; all listed regular season games aired on Fox or ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball. (Exceptions to no-ESPN-games-after-July-6: the last game at Yankee Stadium, and Yankees/Red Sox on 7/27. The 7/12 Fox telecast is not considered.) However, with the exception of TBS’ coverage of the last game at Shea Stadium, all other baseball coverage slots (Monday Night, Wednesday Night, and TBS Sunday) are assumed to be too small for this chart.

NBA includes no NBA TV games (but they are assumed to be too small for this chart), or regular season cable games. NASCAR complete but no Busch Nationwide series ratings, with a couple of exceptions. All non-NFL, non-Olympic ratings over 9.2 through SEC championship game complete. Golf ratings include final round ratings only, and only select third-round ratings, but any final round ratings not on this chart are assumed to be, or actually are, too small for it. College basketball ratings, and ratings for sports not color-coded (except for the finals of tennis’ US Open), are very incomplete, but this season’s college basketball ratings are assumed to be too small for this chart. For example, the NHL Stanley Cup Finals only covers the games on NBC. Sweet Sixteen ratings courtesy TVByTheNumbers; I have one rating representing all of the first two rounds of the NCAA Tournament. Soccer numbers may be underrepresented because of a lack of data on Spanish-language stations.

Rat Event Date/Time Channel
43.1 Super Bowl XLII
Giants v. Patriots
2/3, 6:30 PM ET FOX
29.0 NFC Championship Game
Giants @ Packers
1/20, 6:15 PM ET FOX
25.7 AFC Championship Game
Chargers @ Patriots
1/20, 3 PM ET CBS
23.6 NFL Divisional Game
Giants @ Cowboys
1/13, 4:30 PM ET CBS
20.2 NFL Divisional Game
Chargers @ Colts
1/13, 1 PM ET FOX
19.9 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games:
Night 5
8/12, 8 PM ET NBC
18.8 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games:
Opening Ceremony
8/8, 8 PM ET NBC
18.1 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games:
Night 3
8/10, 7 PM ET NBC
17.9 NFL Divisional Game
Jaguars @ Patriots
1/12, 8 PM ET CBS
17.9 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games:
Night 7
8/14, 8 PM ET NBC
17.8 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games:
Night 9
8/16, 8:30 PM ET NBC
17.6 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games:
Night 4
8/11, 8 PM ET NBC
17.0 NFL Divisional Game
Seahawks @ Packers
1/12, 4:30 PM ET FOX
16.7 NFL Wild Card Game
Titans @ Chargers
1/6, 4:30 PM ET CBS
16.7 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games:
Night 6
8/13, 8 PM ET NBC
16.3 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games:
Night 12
8/19, 8 PM ET NBC
16.0 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games:
Night 10
8/17, 7:30 PM ET NBC
15.8 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games:
Night 11
8/18, 8 PM ET NBC
15.6 NFL: Mostly Cowboys @ Steelers 12/7, 4:15 PM ET FOX
15.5 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games:
Closing Ceremony
8/24, 8 PM ET NBC
15.4 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games:

Night 8

8/15, 8 PM ET NBC
15.4 NFL: regional (NE/PIT or NYJ/DEN) 11/30, 4:15 PM ET CBS
15.3 NFL: Mostly Patriots @ Jets 9/14, 4:15 PM ET CBS
15.2 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games:
Night 13
8/20, 8 PM ET NBC
15.1 NFL Wild Card Game
Giants @ Buccaneers
1/6, 1 PM ET FOX
15.0 NFL Wild Card Game
Jaguars @ Steelers
1/5, 8 PM ET NBC
14.7 NFL: Mostly Cowboys @ Cardinals 10/12, 4:15 PM ET FOX
14.7 NFL: Mostly Ravens @ Steelers 12/14, 4:15 PM ET CBS
14.5 NFL: Mostly Giants @ Cardinals 11/23, 4:15 PM ET FOX
14.4 BCS National Championship Game:
LSU v. Ohio State
1/8, 8 PM ET FOX
14.3 NFL: Mostly Cowboys @ Giants 11/2, 4:15 PM ET FOX
14.2 NFL: Mostly Colts @ Packers 10/19, 4:15 PM ET CBS
14.0 NFL Wild Card Game
Redskins @ Seahawks
1/5, 4:30 PM ET NBC
13.9 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games:
Night 1
8/9, 8:30 PM ET NBC
13.8 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games:
Night 14
8/21, 8 PM ET NBC
13.8 NFL: Mostly Giants @ Steelers 10/26, 4:15 PM ET FOX
13.7 Sunday Night Football
Giants @ Cowboys
12/14, 8:15 PM ET NBC
13.6 NFL: Mostly Colts @ Steelers 11/9, 4:15 PM ET CBS
13.3 Sunday Night Football
Cowboys @ Packers
9/21, 8:15 PM ET NBC
13.0 NFL: Mostly Cowboys @ Browns 9/7, 4:15 PM ET FOX
13.0 NFL: Mostly Redskins @ Cowboys 9/28, 4:15 PM ET FOX
12.6 NFL: Mostly Bengals @ Cowboys 10/5, 4:15 PM ET CBS
12.4 NFL: Mostly Cowboys @ Eagles 12/28, 4:15 PM ET FOX
12.1 MCBB Nat’l Championship Game:
Kansas v. Memphis
4/7, 9 PM ET CBS
12.1 NFL: Mostly Chargers @ Steelers 11/16, 4:15 PM ET CBS
12.0 NFL: Mostly Steelers @ Eagles 9/21, 4:15 PM ET CBS
11.9 World Series
Phillies @ Rays Game 5 finish
10/29, 8:40 PM ET FOX
11.8 NFL: Mostly Falcons @ Vikings 12/21, 4:15 PM ET FOX
11.6 Sunday Night Football
Cowboys @ Redskins
11/16, 8:15 PM ET NBC
11.5 Sunday Night Football
Panthers @ Giants
12/21, 8:15 PM ET NBC
11.3 Monday Night Football:
Eagles @ Cowboys
9/15, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
11.2 Sunday Night Football
Bears @ Colts
9/7, 8:15 PM ET NBC
11.1 Rose Bowl
Illinois v. USC
1/1, 5 PM ET ABC
11.0 Sunday Night Football
Giants @ Eagles
11/9, 8:15 PM ET NBC
10.8 Super Bowl XLII Pregame Show 2/3 FOX
10.8 Sunday Night Football
Steelers @ Browns
9/14, 8:15 PM ET NBC
10.8 Sunday Night Football
Eagles @ Bears
9/28, 8:15 PM ET NBC
10.7 NBA Finals
Lakers @ Celtics Game 6
6/17, 9 PM ET ABC
10.7 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games:
Night 15
8/22, 8:30 PM ET NBC
10.6 Sunday Night Football
Patriots @ Colts
11/2, 8:15 PM ET NBC
10.3 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games:
Night 16
8/23, 9 PM ET NBC
10.2 NASCAR: Daytona 500 2/17, 3:30 PM ET FOX
10.2 NBA Finals
Lakers @ Celtics Game 5
6/15, 9 PM ET ABC
9.6 (World Series
Phillies @ Rays Game 5 – total)
FOX
9.6 Sunday Night Football
Bears @ Vikings
11/30, 8:15 PM ET NBC
9.5 NFL: Regional 9/14 FOX
9.5 Sunday Night Football
Colts @ Chargers
11/23, 8:15 PM ET NBC
9.3 MLB All Star Game Innings 1-9 7/15, 8 PM ET FOX
9.3 World Series
Phillies @ Rays Game 4
10/26, 8:30 PM ET FOX
9.3 SEC Championship:
Florida v. Alabama
12/6, 4 PM ET CBS
9.2 NBA Finals
Celtics @ Lakers Game 3
6/10, 9 PM ET ABC
9.2 World Series
Phillies @ Rays Game 1
10/22, 8:30 PM ET FOX
9.1 Capitol One Bowl
Michigan v. Florida
1/1 ABC
9.0 Belmont Stakes
(Triple Crown at stake)
6/7, 6:15 PM ABC
9.0 Sunday Night Football
Broncos @ Chargers
12/28, 8:15 PM ET NBC
8.9 Kentucky Derby NBC
8.8 MCBB Final Four:
North Carolina v. Kansas
3/30, 5 PM ET CBS
8.8 Sunday Night Football
Steelers @ Jaguars
10/5, 8:15 PM ET NBC
8.7 MCBB Elite Eight:
Davidson v. Kansas
3/30, 5 PM ET CBS
8.7 NBA Finals
Lakers @ Celtics Game 1
6/5, 9 PM ET ABC
8.7 NBA Finals
Celtics @ Lakers Game 4
6/12, 9 PM ET ABC
8.7 NFL: Regional 9/21 FOX
8.7 Monday Night Football:
Steelers @ Redskins
11/3, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
8.6 The Masters: Final Round 4/13, 2:30 PM ET CBS
8.6 NFL: Redskins @ Giants 9/4, 7 PM ET NBC
8.6 NFL: Regional 11/2, 1 PM ET FOX
8.5 NBA Finals
Lakers @ Celtics Game 2
6/6, 9 PM ET ABC
8.4 Monday Night Football:
Packers @ Bears
12/22, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
8.2 Sunday Night Football
Patriots @ Chargers
10/12, 8:15 PM ET NBC
8.2 World Series
Phillies @ Rays Game 5
10/27, 8:30 PM ET FOX
8.1 NFL: Regional 9/21, 1 PM ET CBS
8.1 World Series
Phillies @ Rays Game 2
10/23, 8:30 PM ET FOX
8.1 Sunday Night Football
Redskins @ Ravens
12/7, 8:15 PM ET NBC
8.0 NFL: Regional 9/14, 1 PM ET CBS
8.0 NFL: Regional 11/2 CBS
7.9 Monday Night Football:
Vikings @ Packers
9/8, 7 PM ET ESPN
7.9 ALCS: Rays @ Red Sox, Game 7 10/19, 8 PM ET TBS
7.7 Fiesta Bowl
West Virginia v. Oklahoma
1/2, 8 PM ET FOX
7.7 Beijing 2008 Olympic Games
Men’s basketball: USA v. China
8/10 NBC
7.7 NFL: Mostly Jets @ Dolphins 12/28, 4:15 PM ET CBS
7.6 Monday Night Football:
49ers @ Cardinals
11/10, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
7.5 US Open: Final Round 6/15, 3 PM ET NBC
7.5 MLB All Star Game Innings 10-15 7/15 FOX
7.5 Monday Night Football:
Jets @ Chargers
9/22, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
7.5 Monday Night Football:
Ravens @ Steelers
9/29, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
7.5 Saturday Night Football:
Texas @ Texas Tech
11/1, 8 PM ET ABC
7.5 Monday Night Football:
Browns @ Bills
11/17, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
7.4 Orange Bowl
Kansas v. Virginia Tech
1/3, 8 PM ET FOX
7.4 Monday Night Football:
Packers @ Saints
11/24, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
7.4 Monday Night Football:
Buccaneers @ Panthers
12/8, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
7.3 Monday Night Football:
Colts @ Titans
10/27, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
7.2 MCBB Final Four:
UCLA v. Memphis
4/5, 6 PM ET CBS
7.2 Monday Night Football:
Giants @ Browns
10/13, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
7.1 NASCAR: UAW-Dodge 400 3/2, 4:30 PM ET FOX
7.1 Monday Night Football:
Vikings @ Saints
10/6, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
7.0 Sugar Bowl
Georgia v. Hawaii
1/1, 8:30 PM ET FOX
7.0 Saturday Night Football:
Ohio State @ USC
9/13, 8 PM ET ABC
7.0 Monday Night Football:
Broncos @ Patriots
10/20, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
6.7 US Open: Playoff:
Woods v. Mediate (Part II)
(may be combined rating)
6/16, 2 PM ET NBC
6.6 Saturday Night Football:
Texas Tech @ Oklahoma
11/22, 8 PM ET ABC
6.5 MCBB Elite Eight:
Louisville v. North Carolina
3/29, 9 PM ET CBS
6.4 NASCAR: Kobalt Tools 500 3/9, 2 PM ET FOX
6.4 Saturday Night Football:
Penn State @ Ohio State
10/25, 8 PM ET ABC
6.3 NFL: Pro Bowl 2/10, 4:30 PM ET FOX
6.3 Sunday Night Football
Seahawks @ Buccaneers
10/19, 8:15 PM ET NBC
6.3 BCS Selection Show 12/7, 8 PM ET FOX
6.2 NASCAR: Auto Club 500 2/24, 3:30 PM ET FOX
6.2 Monday Night Football:
Broncos @ Raiders
9/8, 10:15 PM ET ESPN
6.1 World Series
Phillies @ Rays Game 3
10/25, 10 PM ET FOX
5.9 MCBB Sweet Sixteen 3/27, 7 PM ET CBS
5.9 Monday Night Football:
Jaguars @ Texans
12/1, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
5.8 The OT Week 1 9/7, 7 PM ET FOX
5.7 NASCAR: Aaron’s 499 4/27, 2:20 PM ET FOX
5.7 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Cavaliers @ Celtics Game 7
5/18, 3:30 PM ET ABC
5.7 Saturday Night Football:
Oklahoma @ Oklahoma State
11/29, 8 PM ET ABC
5.6 The Masters: Third Round 4/12, 3:30 PM ET CBS
5.6 NLCS: Phillies @ Dodgers Game 3 10/12, 8 PM ET FOX
5.5 NASCAR: Food City 500 3/16, 2 PM ET FOX
5.5 MCBB Sweet Sixteen 3/27, 9:30 PM ET CBS
5.5 MCBB Sweet Sixteen 3/28, 7 PM ET CBS
5.5 Preakness Stakes 5/17, 4:30 PM ET NBC
5.5 Home Run Derby 7/14, 8 PM ET ESPN
5.5 Football Night in America Week 3 9/21, 7 PM ET NBC
5.5 Big 12 Championship:
Oklahoma v. Missouri
12/6, 8 PM ET ABC
5.4 NASCAR: Samsung 500 4/6, 2:20 PM ET FOX
5.4 College Football: Texas v. Oklahoma 10/11, 12 PM ET ABC
5.4 ALCS: Red Sox @ Rays Game 6 10/18, 8:30 PM ET TBS
5.3 NASCAR: Goody’s Cool Orange 500 3/30, 2 PM ET FOX
5.3 Saturday Night Football: regional 11/8, 8 PM ET ABC
5.3 NBA: Celtics @ Lakers 12/25, 5 PM ET ABC
5.2 MCBB Elite Eight: Xavier v. UCLA 3/29, 6:30 PM ET CBS
5.1 MCBB Elite Eight: Texas v. Memphis 3/30, 2:30 PM ET CBS
5.1 NASCAR: Budweiser Shootout 2/9, 8:30 PM ET FOX
5.1 NLCS: Dodgers @ Phillies Game 1 10/9, 8 PM ET FOX
5.1 NLCS: Phillies @ Dodgers Game 5 10/15, 8 PM ET FOX
5.1 College Football: regional 10/25, 3:30 PM ET ABC
5.1 College Football: Alabama @ LSU 11/8, 3:30 PM ET CBS
5.0 MCBB Sweet Sixteen 3/28, 9:30 PM ET CBS
5.0 NLCS: Phillies @ Dodgers Game 4 10/13, 8 PM ET FOX
4.8 MCBB March Madness
Avg. Ratings for First Two Rounds
CBS
4.8 NASCAR: Dodge Challenger 500 5/10, 7:40 PM ET FOX
4.8 NBA Western Conference Finals:
Lakers @ Spurs Game 4
5/27, 9 PM ET TNT
4.7 NASCAR: Coca-Cola 600 5/25, 5:50 PM ET FOX
4.7 NFL Hall of Fame Game
Redskins v. Colts
8/3, 8 PM ET NBC
4.7 ALCS: Rays @ Red Sox Game 5 10/16, 8 PM ET TBS
4.6 IRL: Indianapolis 500 5/25, 1 PM ET ABC
4.6 NBA Western Conference Finals
Spurs @ Lakers Game 5
5/29, 9 PM ET TNT
4.6 NASCAR: Amp Energy 500 10/5, 2 PM ET ABC
4.6 College Football: regional 10/11, 3:30 PM ET ABC
4.5 NASCAR: Dan Lowry 400 5/3, 7:50 PM ET FOX
4.5 NASCAR: Best Buy 400 6/1, 2:20 PM ET FOX
4.5 Football Night in America Week 2 9/14, 7 PM ET NBC
4.5 Champs Sports Bowl
Florida State v. Wisconsin
12/27, 4:30 PM ET ESPN
4.4 NASCAR: Subway Fresh Fit 500 4/12, 9 PM ET FOX
4.4 College Football: regional 11/8, 3:30 PM ET ABC
4.4 College Football: regional 11/22, 3:30 PM ET ABC
4.3 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Spurs @ Hornets Game 7
5/19, 8:30 PM ET TNT
4.3 NBA Eastern Conference Finals
Pistons @ Celtics Game 5
5/28, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
4.3 NASCAR: Allstate 400 at the Brickyard 7/27, 2 PM ET ESPN
4.3 College Football: Miami (FL) @ Florida 9/6, 8 PM ET ESPN
4.3 CFB: Michigan @ Ohio State 11/22, 12 PM ET ABC
4.2 Buick Invitational: Final Round 1/27, 3 PM ET CBS
4.2 NBA Eastern Conference Finals
Celtics @ Pistons Game 6
5/30, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
4.2 College Football: USC @ Oregon State 9/25, 9 PM ET ESPN
4.2 Saturday Night Football: regional 10/4, 8 PM ET ABC
4.1 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Jazz @ Lakers Game 1
5/4, 3:30 PM ET ABC
4.1 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Lakers @ Jazz Game 4
5/11, 3:30 PM ET ABC
4.1 NBA Western Conference Finals
Spurs @ Lakers Game 1
5/21, 9 PM ET TNT
4.1 College Football: Tennessee @ UCLA 9/1, 8 PM ET ESPN
4.1 ALCS: Red Sox @ Rays Game 1 10/10, 8:30 PM ET TBS
4.0 MCBB Selection Show 3/16, 6 PM ET CBS
4.0 NBA Eastern Conference Finals
Celtics @ Pistons Game 4
5/26, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
4.0 Stanley Cup Finals:

Red Wings @ Penguins Game 6

6/4, 8 PM ET NBC
4.0 US Olympic Trials: Swimming 7/6, 8 PM ET NBC
4.0 NASCAR: Ford 400 11/16, 3:30 PM ET ABC
4.0 Emerald Bowl
Miami (FL) v. California
12/27, 8 PM ET ESPN
3.9 NBA Eastern Conference Finals
Pistons @ Celtics Game 2
5/22, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
3.9 NASCAR: Pocono 500 6/8, 2 PM ET TNT
3.9 US Olympic Trials
Women’s Gymnastics
6/22, 7 PM ET NBC
3.9 College Football: Alabama @ Georgia 9/27, 8 PM ET ESPN
3.9 ALDS: Angels @ Red Sox Game 3 10/5, 7:50 PM ET TBS
3.9 Meineke Car Care Bowl
West Virginia v. North Carolina
12/27, 1 PM ET ESPN
3.9 Alamo Bowl
Missouri v. Northwestern
12/29, 8 PM ET ESPN
3.9 Holiday Bowl
Oklahoma State v. Oregon
12/30, 8 PM ET ESPN
3.8 NBA All-Star Game 2/17, 8:30 PM ET TNT
3.8 Stanley Cup Finals:

Penguins @ Red Wings Game 5

6/2, 8 PM ET NBC
3.8 NASCAR: Coke Zero 400 7/5, 8 PM ET TNT
3.8 NASCAR: Pennsylvania 500 8/3, 2 PM ET ESPN
3.8 NASCAR: Sylvania 300 9/14, 2 PM ET ABC
3.8 College Football: LSU @ Florida 10/11, 3:30 PM ET CBS
3.8 NASCAR: Bank of America 500 10/11, 7:30 PM ET ABC
3.8 ALCS: Red Sox @ Rays Game 2 10/11, 8 PM ET TBS
3.8 ALCS: Rays @ Red Sox Game 4 10/14, 8 PM ET TBS
3.8 College Football: regional 10/18, 3:30 PM ET ABC
3.8 College Football: Georgia v. Florida 11/1, 3:30 PM ET CBS
3.7 NBA Eastern Conference Finals
Pistons @ Celtics Game 1
5/20, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
3.7 NBA Western Conference Finals
Spurs @ Lakers Game 2
5/23, 9 PM ET TNT
3.7 NBA Eastern Conference Finals
Celtics @ Pistons Game 3
5/24, 8:30 PM ET ABC
3.7 NBA Western Conference Finals
Lakers @ Spurs Game 3
5/25, 8:30 PM ET TNT
3.7 NASCAR: Toyota/SaveMart 350 6/22, 5 PM ET TNT
3.7 College Football: regional 11/1, 3:30 PM ET ABC
3.7 NASCAR: Dickies 500 11/2, 3:30 PM ET ABC
3.6 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Cavaliers @ Celtics Game 5
5/14, 8 PM ET TNT
3.6 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Jazz @ Lakers Game 5
5/14, 10:30 PM ET TNT
3.6 US Open: Playoff:
Woods v. Mediate (Part I)
6/16, 12 PM ET ESPN
3.6 Saturday Night Football: regional 8/30, 8 PM ET ABC
3.6 Saturday Night Football: regional 9/27, 8 PM ET ABC
3.6 ALDS: Angels @ Red Sox Game 4 10/6, 8:30 PM ET TBS
3.6 NASCAR: Pep Boys Auto 500 10/26, 2 PM ET ABC
3.6 NASCAR: Checker O’Reilly 500 11/9, 3:30 PM ET ABC
3.5 Cotton Bowl
Missouri v. Arkansas
1/1, 11:30 AM ET FOX
3.5 NBA Playoffs First Round
Nuggets @ Lakers Game 1
4/20, 3 PM ET ABC
3.5 NBA Playoffs First Round
Spurs @ Suns Game 4
4/27, 3:30 PM ET ABC
3.5 NBA Playoffs First Round
Hawks @ Celtics Game 5
5/4, 1 PM ET ABC
3.5 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Cavaliers @ Celtics Game 1
5/6, 8 PM ET TNT
3.5 Wimbledon: Men’s Singles Final
Federer v. Nadal
7/6, 9 AM ET NBC
3.5 CFB: Michigan @ Notre Dame 9/13, 3:30 PM ET NBC
3.5 College Football: LSU @ Auburn 9/20, 7:45 PM ET ESPN
3.5 NASCAR: Camping World RV 400 9/28, 2 PM ET ABC
3.5 NLDS: Dodgers @ Cubs Game 1 10/1, 6:30 PM ET TBS
3.4 MCBB: North Carolina @ Duke 3/11, 9 PM ET ESPN
3.4 NFL Draft 4/26-27? ESPN
3.4 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Hornets @ Spurs Game 3
5/8, 9:30 PM ET ESPN
3.4 NASCAR: Lenox Industrial Tools 301 6/29, 2 PM ET TNT
3.4 US Olympic Trials
Track and Field/Swimming
6/29, 7 PM ET NBC
3.4 US Olympic Trials: Track and Field 7/6, 7 PM ET NBC
3.4 NLCS: Dodgers @ Phillies Game 2 10/10, 4:30 PM ET FOX
3.4 NFL: Ravens @ Cowboys 12/20, 8 PM ET NFL Net
3.4 Chick-fil-A Bowl
LSU v. Georgia Tech
12/31, 7:30 PM ET ESPN
3.3 Outback Bowl
Tennessee v. Wisconsin
1/1, 11 AM ET ESPN
3.3 US Figure Skating Championships
Women’s Final
1/26, 8 PM ET NBC
3.3 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Celtics @ Cavaliers Game 4
5/12, 8 PM ET TNT
3.3 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Celtics @ Cavaliers Game 6
5/16, 8 PM ET ESPN
3.3 NASCAR: LifeLock 400 6/15, 2 PM ET TNT
3.3 British Open: Final Round 7/20, 8 AM ET ABC
3.3 NASCAR: 3M Performance 400 8/17, 2 PM ET ESPN
3.3 NASCAR: Pepsi 500 8/31, 8 PM ET ESPN
3.3 Football Night in America Week 1 9/7, 7 PM ET NBC
3.3 US Open: Women’s Singles Final
S. Williams v. Jankovic
9/7, 9 PM ET CBS
3.3 College Football: regional 9/20, 3:30 PM ET ABC
3.3 NASCAR: Camping World RV 400 9/21, 2 PM ET ABC
3.3 ALDS: Red Six @ Angels Game 2 10/3, 9:30 PM ET TBS
3.3 NASCAR: Tums QuikPak 500 10/19, 1:30 PM ET ABC
3.3 CFB: South Carolina @ Florida 11/15, 3:30 PM ET CBS
3.2 MCBB: Tennessee @ Memphis 2/23, 8 PM ET ESPN
3.2 NBA Playoffs First Round
Suns @ Spurs Game 1
4/19, 3 PM ET ABC
3.2 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Celtics @ Cavaliers Game 3
5/10, 8 PM ET ABC
3.2 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Lakers @ Jazz Game 6
5/16, 10:30 PM ET ESPN
3.2 NASCAR: LifeLock.com 400 7/12, 8 PM ET TNT
3.2 NFL Preseason: Texans @ Cowboys 8/22, 8 PM ET CBS
3.2 NLDS: Cubs @ Dodgers Game 3 10/4, 10 PM ET TBS
3.2 Poinsettia Bowl
TCU v. Boise State
12/23, 8 PM ET ESPN
3.2 NBA: Spurs @ Suns 12/25, 2:30 PM ET ABC
3.1 NBA All-Star Saturday Night 2/16, 8:30 PM ET TNT
3.1 NBA Playoffs First Round
Suns @ Spurs Game 5
4/29, 9:30 PM ET TNT
3.1 The Players Championship
Final Round
5/11, 2 PM ET NBC
3.1 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Spurs @ Hornets Game 5
5/13, 9:30 PM ET TNT
3.1 FOX NFL Sunday Week 2 9/14, 12 PM ET FOX
3.1 SportsCenter
(following Eagles @ Cowboys)
9/15, 11 PM ET ESPN
3.1 College Football: regional 10/4, 3:30 PM ET ABC
3.1 Saturday Night Football:
Missouri @ Texas
10/18, 8 PM ET ABC
3.1 College Football: regional 11/15, 3:30 PM ET ABC
3.0 WGC-Accenture Match Play
Championship
NBC
3.0 NBA: Mavericks @ Lakers 3/2, 3:30 PM ET ABC
3.0 WGC-CA Championship
Final Round
3/22, 3 PM ET NBC
3.0 NBA Playoffs First Round
Suns @ Spurs Game 2
4/22, 9:30 PM ET TNT
3.0 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Jazz @ Lakers Game 2
5/7, 10:30 PM ET TNT
3.0 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Hornets @ Spurs Game 6
5/15, 9 PM ET ESPN
3.0 EliteXC Saturday Night Fights 5/31, 9 PM ET CBS
3.0 MLB: Regional
Red Sox/Yankees or Cubs/Cardinals
7/5, 3:30 PM ET FOX
3.0 NASCAR: Centurion Boats at the Glen 8/10, 2 PM ET ESPN
3.0 NASCAR: Sharpie 500 8/23, 8 PM ET ESPN
3.0 ALDS: Red Sox @ Angels Game 1 10/1, 10 PM ET TBS
3.0 ALCS: Rays @ Red Sox Game 3 10/13, 4:30 PM ET TBS
3.0 College Football: Georgia @ LSU 10/25, 3:30 PM ET CBS
3.0 College Football: Texas @ Texas A&M 11/27, 8 PM ET ESPN

Below I’ve extended the ratings below 3.0 to as low as 2.0, although these ratings are more incomplete.

2.9 NASCAR: Daytona 500 Qualifying FOX
2.9 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Spurs @ Hornets Game 2
5/5, 9:30 PM ET TNT
2.9 US Olympic Trials
Women’s Gymnastics
6/21, 8 PM ET NBC
2.9 College Football: regional 9/6, 3:30 PM ET ABC
2.9 CFB: Georgia @ South Carolina 9/13, 3:30 PM ET CBS
2.9 Ryder Cup: Final Round 9/21, 12 PM ET NBC
2.9 NLDS: Phillies @ Brewers Game 3 10/4, 6:30 PM ET TBS
2.9 NASCAR: Checker O’Reilly 500 finish 11/9, 7:30 PM ET ESPN2
2.9 Saturday Night Football: regional 11/15, 8 PM ET ABC
2.8 NBA: Cavaliers @ Lakers 1/27, 3:30 PM ET ABC
2.8 NBA Playoffs First Round
Lakers @ Nuggets Game 4
4/28, 10:30 PM ET TNT
2.8 MLB: Regional
Yankees/Red Sox or Braves/Phillies
7/26, 3:30 PM ET FOX
2.8 MLB: Yankees @ Red Sox 7/27, 8 PM ET ESPN
2.8 PGA Championship: Final Round 8/10, 2 PM ET ABC
2.8 NFL Preseason: Bengals @ Packers 8/11, 8 PM ET ESPN
2.8 NFL Preseason: Steelers @ Vikings 8/23, 8 PM ET CBS
2.8 College Football: regional 8/30, 3:30 PM ET ABC
2.8 The NFL Today Week 2 9/14, 12 PM ET CBS
2.8 CFB: Michigan @ Penn State 10/18, 4:30 PM ET ESPN
2.8 CFB: Mississippi State @ Alabama 11/15, 7:45 PM ET ESPN
2.7 MLB: Regional (incl. Yankees/Red Sox) 4/12, 3:30 PM ET FOX
2.7 MLB: Red Sox @ Yankees 7/6, 8 PM ET ESPN
2.7 CFB: West Virginia @ Colorado 9/18, 8:30 PM ET ESPN
2.7 College Football: Florida @ Tennessee 9/20, 3:30 PM ET CBS
2.7 Saturday Night Football:
Georgia @ Arizona State
9/20, 8 PM ET ABC
2.7 AL Central Tiebreaker:
Twins @ White Sox
9/30, 7:30 PM ET TBS
2.7 NLDS: Brewers @ Phillies Game 2 10/2, 6 PM ET TBS
2.7 EliteXC Saturday Night Fights 10/4, 9 PM ET CBS
2.7 NFL: Jets @ Patriots 11/13, 8 PM ET NFL Net
2.7 Heisman Trophy Presentation 12/13, 8 PM ET ESPN
2.6 Gator Bowl
Texas Tech v. Virginia
1/1, 1 PM ET CBS
2.6 NBA: Lakers @ Heat 2/10, 3:30 PM ET ABC
2.6 MLB: Yankees @ Red Sox 4/13, 8 PM ET ESPN
2.6 NASCAR Nationwide: Aaron’s 312 4/26 ABC
2.6 NBA Playoffs First Round
Hawks @ Celtics Game 5
4/30, 8:30 PM ET TNT
2.6 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Spurs @ Hornets Game 1
5/3, 10 PM ET TNT
2.6 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Lakers @ Jazz Game 3
5/9, 9 PM ET ESPN
2.6 College Football: Ohio v. Ohio State 9/6, 12 PM ET ESPN
2.6 NLDS: Dodgers @ Cubs Game 2 10/2, 9:30 PM ET TBS
2.6 ALDS: White Sox @ Rays Game 2 10/3, 6 PM ET TBS
2.6 ACC Championship:
Virginia Tech v. Boston College
12/6, 1 PM ET ABC
2.6 Hawaii Bowl

Notre Dame v. Hawaii

12/24, 8 PM ET ESPN
2.5 NASCAR: Auto Club 500 finish 2/25, 1 PM ET FOX
2.5 NBA Playoffs First Round
Spurs @ Suns Game 3
4/25, 10:30 PM ET ESPN
2.5 NBA Playoffs First Round
Hornets @ Mavericks Game 4
4/27, 9:30 PM ET TNT
2.5 NBA Playoffs First Round
Celtics @ Hawks Game 4
4/28, 8 PM ET TNT
2.5 NASCAR: Sprint Cup All-Star Race 5/17, 7 PM ET Speed
2.5 MLB: Regional
Yankees/Mets or Cubs/White Sox
6/28, 3:30 PM ET FOX
2.5 Wimbledon: Women’s Singles Final
V. Williams v. S. Williams
7/5, 9 AM ET NBC
2.5 US Olympic Trials: Swimming 7/5, 8 PM ET NBC
2.5 NFL Preseason: Browns @ Giants 8/18, 8 PM ET ESPN
2.5 NASCAR: Chevy Rock and Roll 400 9/7, 1 PM ET ESPN
2.5 College Football: USC @ UCLA 12/6, 4:30 PM ET ABC
2.4? MCBB: Pac-10 Championship
Stanford v. UCLA
3/15, 6 PM ET CBS
2.4 MLB Opening Night
Braves @ Nationals
3/31, 8 PM ET ESPN
2.4 Women’s Final Four
LSU v. Tennessee
4/6 ESPN
2.4 NBA: Spurs @ Lakers 4/19, 3 PM ET ABC
2.4 NBA Playoffs First Round
Nuggets @ Lakers Game 2
4/23, 10:30 PM ET TNT
2.4 NBA Playoffs First Round
Cavaliers @ Wizards Game 4
4/27, 1 PM ET ABC
2.4 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Hornets @ Spurs Game 4
5/11, 8:30 PM ET TNT
2.4 NFL Preseason: Saints @ Cardinals 8/7, 8 PM ET ESPN
2.4 NFL Preseason: Raiders @ Titans 8/15, 8 PM ET FOX
2.4 College Football: regional 9/13, 3:30 PM ET ABC
2.4 CFB: Alabama @ Tennessee 10/25, 7:45 PM ET ESPN
2.4 CFB: Pittsburgh @ Notre Dame 11/1, 2:30 PM ET NBC
2.4 NFL: Colts @ Jaguars 12/18, 8 PM ET NFL Net
2.4 Music City Bowl
Boston College v. Vanderbilt
12/31, 3:30 PM ET ESPN
2.3 NBA: Spurs @ Celtics 2/10, 1 PM ET ABC
2.3 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Pistons @ Magic Game 3
5/7, 8 PM ET TNT
2.3 MLB: Mets @ Yankees 5/18, 8 PM ET ESPN
2.3 Stanley Cup Finals
Red Wings @ Penguins Game 4
5/31, 8 PM ET NBC
2.3 Euro 2008: Final
Spain v. Germany
6/29, 2:30 PM ET ABC
2.3 US Olympic Trials: Swimming 7/4, 8 PM ET NBC
2.3 CFB: San Diego State @ Notre Dame 9/6, 3:30 PM ET NBC
2.3 College Football: Tennessee @ Auburn 9/27, 3:30 PM ET CBS
2.3 College Football: Mississippi @ LSU 11/22, 3:30 PM ET CBS
2.3 NFL: Bears @ Saints 12/11, 8 PM ET NFL Net
2.2 NHL Winter Classic:
Penguins @ Sabres
1/1 NBC
2.2 NNS: Camping World 300 ESPN2
2.2 MLB: Regional 4/5, 3:30 PM ET FOX
2.2 MLB: Cubs @ Cardinals 5/4, 8 PM ET ESPN
2.2 NBA Playoffs Conference Semis
Cavaliers @ Celtics Game 2
5/8, 7 PM ET ESPN
2.2 MLB: Regional 5/10, 3:30 PM ET FOX
2.2 US Olympic Trials: Diving 6/22, 3 PM ET NBC
2.2 US Olympic Trials: Track and Field 6/28, 8 PM ET NBC
2.2 MLB: Regional 7/19, 3:30 PM ET FOX
2.2 MLB: Regional 8/2, 3:30 PM ET FOX
2.2 NFL Preseason: Panthers @ Eagles 8/14, 8 PM ET FOX
2.2 ALDS: Rays @ White Sox Game 3 10/5, 4:30 PM ET TBS
2.2 ALDS: Rays @ White Sox Game 4 10/6, 5 PM ET TBS
2.2 College Football: LSU @ South Carolina 10/18, 8 PM ET ESPN
2.2 College Football: Ohio State @ Illinois 11/15, 12 PM ET ESPN
2.2 Sun Bowl: Oregon State v. Pittsburgh 12/31, 2 PM ET CBS
2.1 NBA Draft ESPN
2.1 NBA Playoffs First Round
Mavericks @ Hornets Game 1
4/19, 7 PM ET ESPN
2.1 MLB: Regional 8/9, 3:30 PM ET FOX
2.1 Little League World Series
Championship Game
8/24 ABC
2.1 MLB: Orioles @ Yankees
(last game at Yankee Stadium)
9/21, 8:15 PM ET ESPN
2.1 College Football: Notre Dame @ USC 11/29, 8 PM ET ESPN
2.1 Humanitarian Bowl
Maryland v. Nevada
12/30, 4:30 PM ET ESPN
2.0 NFL Preseason: Jaguars @ Redskins 8/28, 8 PM ET NBC
2.0 CFB: Virginia Tech @ East Carolina 8/30, 12 PM ET ESPN
2.0 NLDS: Brewers @ Phillies Game 1 10/1, 3 PM ET TBS
2.0 ALDS: White Sox @ Rays Game 1 10/2, 2:30 PM ET TBS
2.0 CFB: Mississippi @ Alabama 10/18, 3:30 PM ET CBS
2.0 College Football: Army v. Navy 12/6, 12 PM ET CBS

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