TV Ratings: 'American Idol' carries Thursday for FOX
A special Thursday "American Idol" results show easily outdrew the NCAA Sweet 16 on CBS, giving the night to FOX in all measures.
FOX averaged a 6.1 rating in the key 18-49 demographic, beating the 3.8 rating for ABC, the 3.5 rating for CBS and NBC's 3.1 rating. The CW trailed in the key demo with a 1.4 rating.
Overall, FOX averaged an estimated 16.65 million viewers in primetime to go with a 9.7 rating/15 share. ABC was second again with a 7.3/12, followed by the 6.5/10 for CBS. NBC was fourth overall with a 4.9/8. The CW's 2.2/3 was good for fifth.
In the 8 p.m. hour "American Idol" did a 12.9/20 for an easy win. CBS' NCAA coverage was second with a 6.0/10. The series premiere of ABC's "In the Motherhood" (4.6/7) and the time period premiere of "Samantha Who?" (4.5/7) did surprisingly solid numbers. NBC's "My Name Is Earl" and an "Office" repeat were fourth, beating the 2.3/4 for "Smallville" on The CW.
ABC moved into first at 9 p.m. with a 10.3/16 for "Grey's Anatomy." CBS' basketball stayed second, beating the 6.5/10 for FOX's "Hell's Kitchen." NBC's "The Office" and "30 Rock" did a 4.6/7 between then. Fifth place went to "Supernatural," which had a 2.1/3 on The CW.
"Private Practice" won the 10 p.m. hour for ABC, doing a 7.1/12. CBS' basketball and NBC's "E.R." tied for second with a 6.6/11.
All ratings information comes from preliminary Fast National Nielsen data, which includes live and same-day DVR viewing. All numbers are subject to change.