ESPN College Football: ABC Airs Most-Watched November Saturday Since 2016

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ESPN College Football: ABC Airs Most-Watched November Saturday Since 2016

  • Most-Watched Week 12 Across ESPN Platforms Since 2015
  • ESPN Wins the Night Among All Viewers and All Key Male and Adult Demos
  • Multiple Superlatives in Every Window
  • Six of the Top 10 Games of Week 12 on ESPN Platforms

In a weekend filled with upsets, top teams and thrillers, ESPN platforms came away the winner with ABC’s most-watched November Saturday since 2016. ESPN platforms delivered the top three most-viewed games of the weekend and its most-watched Week 12 since 2015. ABC and ESPN won every window (noon, afternoon, primetime, late prime) on the penultimate Saturday of the 2022 regular season, and ESPN won the night as the most-viewed network in primetime among all viewers and all key male and adult demos.

ABC averaged 5.1 million viewers across its three windows, including 6.6 million viewers for No. 2 Ohio State at Maryland, which is ABC’s most-watched game since Week 1 and the network’s most-watched late afternoon game since 2017 (Michigan/Florida, Week 1). No. 21 Illinois at No. 3 Michigan goes down as ABC’s most-watched noon game of the season and notched the highest peak audience of the day with 9.7 million viewers in the closing minutes of the Michigan victory. Despite the lopsided victory from Norman, Bedlam featuring Oklahoma State and Oklahoma registered 3.1 million viewers in primetime.

On ESPN, South Carolina’s stunning victory over No. 5 Tennessee scored 4.9 million viewers, winning the primetime window and becoming ESPN’s second most-watched game of the season and one of the top 10 most-watched games on the network in the past five years. In the late prime window, No. 13 Utah at No. 6 Oregon registered 2.5 million viewers, ESPN’s most-watched Saturday game to kick off after 10 p.m. since 2015.

ESPN’S MOST-VIEWED GAMES OF WEEK 12

Top-10 Rank* Window Matchup Network P2+ Viewers
1 Afternoon Ohio State at Maryland ABC 6.6 million
2 Noon Illinois at Michigan ABC 5.5 million
3 Primetime Tennessee at South Carolina ESPN 4.9 million
7 Primetime Oklahoma State at Oklahoma ABC 3.1 million
8 Late Night Utah at Oregon ESPN 2.5 million
10 Noon Wisconsin at Nebraska ESPN 1.6 million

* Among college football games across all networks in Week 12

Local Markets Locked in for Week 12

Michigan at Illinois, ABC Ohio State at Maryland, ABC Tennessee at
South Carolina, ESPN
Market Rating Market Rating Market Rating
Detroit 15.7 Columbus, OH 30.4 Knoxville 24.5
Columbus, OH 15.0 Dayton 22.3 Greenville-Sprtnburg-Ash 15.5
Dayton 10. Cleveland 17.8 Birmingham 12.6
Cleveland 7.4 Cincinnati 9.7 Nashville 11.9
Ft. Myers 5.5 Detroit 9.6 Memphis 6.6

College GameDay Brings the Beauty from Bozeman
College GameDay Built by The Home Depot continued its winning ways while welcoming a scenic Montana morning, as the preview to the Brawl of the Wild boasted 2.2 million viewers for the premier Saturday pre-game show. The audience is up 9 percent from last year’s Week 12 show and 27 percent from a recent comparable site location in 2019 (Brookings, SD). The broadcast from Bozeman ranks in the top five most-watched shows during this record-setting season, and College GameDay remains on pace for its best season ever and is up double digits among both P2+ viewers and P18-49.

Amanda Brooks

Amanda is the Director of Communications for ESPN College Football and SEC Network, and oversees publicity for college gymnastics and track & field across all ESPN networks. Amanda is a proud alum of Hendrix College in Conway, Ark., and earned her master's in ethics from Vanderbilt University. A native of Kent, Ohio, she is a die-hard Cleveland sports fan.
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