Nobody’s gone broke overestimating the passion of college football fans, SEC fans in particular.
Viewership is up across the board. The SEC set an all-time record across all conferences with 7,784,376 fans in 2015, leading all FBS conferences in average attendance for the 18th consecutive year with 78,630 fans per game. There were attendance records set at lower levels of CFB, as well.
Of the reams of data to go through at the linked article, here’s one that deserves a lot of attention:
- For the seventh consecutive year, the “SEC ON CBS” was the highest-rated regular season college football package on any network. CBS Sports’ national coverage of SEC football averaged a national household rating/share of 3.4/8. This marked the 20th season of SEC football on CBS.
- CBS also scored the season’s highest-rated and most-watched college football game with the SEC Championship between Alabama and Florida on Dec. 5. The game delivered an average national household rating/share of 7.8/17 and averaged 12.76 million viewers.
- CBS also had the second most-watched game of the season: Alabama’s primetime showdown versus LSU on Nov. 7, which averaged 11.06 million viewers.
I guess free TV still has its upside. Advantage: SEC (and to a lesser extent, Notre Dame). Think they’re dumb enough to give that up? For the right amount of Mickey’s money, sure.