NCAA Tournament Ratings Up 17 Percent Through First Week

By Marcus Vanderberg Comment

Through the first week of games, the 2011 NCAA Tournament is tied with 1993 and 1991 as the best overall tournament-to-date average ratings in metered markets since the tournament expanded coverage to all live games.

The overall tournament average-to-date is a 6.2 rating/14 share, up 17 percent from a 5.3 rating/12 share from CBS Sports’ 2010 coverage of March Madness.

Yesterday’s coverage combined for an overnight household rating/share of 7.3/14, up 14 percent from a 6.4/13 from last year. Those numbers ties with a 7.3/17 in 1998 as the highest rating for the first Sunday of the NCAA Tournament in metered markets since a 7.5/19 in 1994.