TV Ratings: FOX's Gators devour Thursday competition
New episodes of ABC's hit Thursday shows proved no competition for FOX's telecast of the BCS National Championship game between the Florida Gators and the Oklahoma Sooners.
FOX averaged an 8.4 rating in the key 18-49 demographic, nearly beating all of the other four networks combined. ABC was distant second with a 3.6 rating, followed by the 2.2 rating for both CBS and NBC. The CW's 0.8 rating trailed.
Overall, FOX averaged nearly 24.4 million viewers and a 14.1 rating/21 share. ABC was a distant second with a 6.7/10, with a 6.0/9 for CBS taking third. NBC's 3.7/6 was fourth, while The CW's 1.4/2 was fifth.
FOX's football game swept the primetime hours, starting at 8 p.m. with a 13.9/22. A repeat of CBS' "CSI: NY" was second, beating the 5.0/8 for "Ugly Betty" on ABC. NBC's "My Name Is Earl" and "30 Rock" averaged a 3.1/5 between them, while The CW's "Smallville" trailed with a 1.5/2.
At 9 p.m. FOX's football went up to a 14.4/21. ABC got a fairly low 8.9/13 for a new "Grey's Anatomy," while CBS' "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" repeat was third with a 7.2/11. NBC's repeat of "The Office" (3.0/4) and a new "30 Rock" (3.4/5) was a distant fourth, followed by "Supernatural" on The CW.
The Gator's National Championship win closed with a 14./23 for FOX in the 10 p.m. hour. ABC's "Private Practice" was second with a 6.0/10. CBS was third with "Eleventh Hour," while NBC's "E.R." was third with a 4.9/8.
All ratings information comes from preliminary Fast National data, which includes live and same-day DVR viewing. All numbers are subject to change, particularly in the case of live events.