GLENDALE, ARIZ.: ESPN pulled in a record overnight rating for last night’s BCS championship game between the Auburn Tigers and the Oregon Ducks. The telecast of the Tigers pulling out a 22-19 victory over the Ducks generated a 16.1 Nielsen overnight metered-market rating, ESPN said. The network called it “the highest in the history of cable television,” or back to 2001.
The previous high was 14.4 for an ESPN Monday Night Football game between the New England Patriots at New Orleans Saints on Nov. 30, 2009. The sports franchise said the 16.1 was higher than two of the previous six BCS title games; a 15.6 in 2008 and a 14.6 in 2005. ESPN consequently won prime time among all nets.
National ratings are expected this afternoon. ESPN said it expected the telecast to “become the most-viewed program in the history of cable television.” The current topper is an NFL game between the Packers and the Vikings fought out Oct. 5, 2009, generating a 15.3 national rating.
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