NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Championship
Turner Sports and CBS Sports' exclusive presentation of the 2014 NCAA Division I Men's Basketball National Semifinals (Saturday, April 5) across TBS, TNT and truTV delivered the two most-watched college basketball telecasts in cable television history. The networks' collective coverage of Saturday's National Semifinals - Florida vs. Connecticut and Wisconsin vs. Kentucky - averaged 14 million total viewers and a 9.1 coverage household rating.
Kentucky against Wisconsin grossed 16.3 million total viewers and an 11.0 coverage household rating to become the most-viewed college basketball game of all time on a cable television network. The telecast peaked with an average of 18.6 million total viewers and a 12.7 HH coverage rating from 11-11:30 p.m. ET.
Coverage of Connecticut/Florida across the three networks grossed 11.7 million total viewers and an 8.2 coverage household rating to become the second most-watched college basketball game ever on a cable television network. The Connecticut/Florida telecast peaked with an average of 16.2 million total viewers and a 10.9 HH coverage rating from 8-8:30 p.m.
NCAA March Madness Live
NCAA March Madness Live, managed by Turner Sports, set a new record for video consumption during the 2014 NCAA Tournament, with 69.7 million live video streams collectively across all platforms. This year's live video streams grew by +42% over last year's tournament, far exceeding the total of 49 million live video streams for the entire tournament in 2013.
NCAA March Madness Live netted 15 million hours of live video consumed for this year's tournament, also an all-time record and a +7% increase over last year. Additionally, NCAA March Madness Live represented a watershed event for the TV Everywhere initiative, marking record-setting year-over-year growth in usage and surpassing total TV Everywhere consumption for the entire 2013 tournament by the end of the second round.
In addition to its record-breaking television audience, the National Semifinals delivered unprecedented growth across March Madness Live. The two games netted 3.8 million live streams for an increase of +76% over last year. The doubleheader also combined to register more than one million hours of live video consumed, a +37% increase over 2013. According to Social Guide, the National Semifinals tallied more than 1.8 million tweets - seen by nearly 200 million followers - for a +36% increase over last year.
Monday's National Championship between Kentucky and Connecticut generated 2.1 million live video streams, a +30% increase over last year's championship game.
Mobile platforms (tablets and smartphones) experienced significant growth, with live streams increasing by +71% during the NCAA Tournament. Live streaming hours across mobile also delivered considerable growth, rising +38% over last year.
TV Everywhere usage marked tremendous year-over-year growth, +85% in live streams and +72% in hours spent viewing. Users who were logged in spent more time watching games, streaming an average of +67% more minutes than users who weren't logged in. Additionally, mobile platforms saw a huge surge in TV Everywhere usage for the 2014 tournament, with live streams on logged-in mobile devices representing 52% of the total TV Everywhere usage for the entire tournament.
TBS, which last week swept all key adult demos in primetime for Q1 2014, extended its success into the new quarter, ranking as basic cable's #1 network for the week in primetime delivery of total viewers and all key adult demos.
Last Tuesday's season five finale of Cougar Town averaged 1.9 million viewers in Live + 3 viewing. In key demos, the show averaged more than 1.2 million adults 18-49 (+7% vs. the prior week) and 589,000 adults 18-34.
TBS's hit series Deal With It garnered 1.5 million viewers in Live + 3 viewing for last Tuesday's episode. The show matched its prior week's average among adults 18-49 (904,000) and grew +5% among adults 18-34 (453,000).
The Big Bang Theory on TBS accounted for 19 of basic cable's Top 20 off-net sitcom telecasts among total viewers and 17 of the Top 20 among adults 18-49.
In its first week touting a full primetime programming schedule (8 p.m. - 6 a.m.), Adult Swim's average Total Day performance continued to rank #1 on basic cable among adults 18-34, 18-49 & 18-24 as well as among men 18-34, 18-49 & 18-24. Additionally, Adult Swim claimed basic cable's second most-watched network in primetime among adults 18-34.
On Sunday night, the world television premiere of Adult Swim's Robot Chicken DC Comics Special II: Villains in Paradise (11:30 p.m.) ranked #1 in its time period on basic cable among all targeted adults 18-34, 18-49 & 18-24 and men 18-34 & 18-49.
Among its original programming line-up, a new episode the Adult Swim original series Check It Out (Thursday, 12:30 a.m.) scored solid delivery gains among adults 18-34 (14%), adults 18-49 (2%), men 18-34 (20%) and men 18-49 (5%) vs. the same time period last year.
Saturday night's TOONAMI anime programming line-up also scored big: Naruto (12:30 a.m.) ranked #1 in its time period among men 18-34, while One Piece (1 a.m.) ranked #1 in its time period among adults 18-24 and men 18-24 & 18-34. Blue Exorcist (1:30 a.m.) ranked #1 in its time period among adults 18-34 & 18-24, and Black Lagoon (2 a.m.) ranked #1 in its time period among adults 18-24. One Piece grew average delivery year-over-year among adults 18-34 (17%) & 18-49 (16%) and all targeted male demos (between 4% and 33%), while Blue Exorcist and Black Lagoon both grew average delivery among all targeted adults (between 10% and 22%) and men 18-34 & 18-49.
Among Adult Swim's key acquired programming on Monday nights, American Dad (11 p.m.) ranked #1 in its time period among adults & men 18-24, earning delivery gains among all male demos vs. last year (between 2% and 16%). Similarly, The Cleveland Show (9:30 p.m.) posted double-digit delivery gains among all key adults and men (ranging between 29% and 131%), and Family Guy (10 p.m.) grew delivery among adults and men 18-34 & 18-49 (ranging between 32% and 46%).
Adult Swim programming - including Family Guy, American Dad, Robot Chicken and Rick and Morty - accounted for 25 of the top 50 telecasts on basic cable for the week among adults 18-34, and 27 of the top 50 with men 18-34, both more than any other network.
Across the first week of April 2014, Cartoon Network ranked as television's #1 network among boys 6-11 & 9-14 on Thursday Night (6 - 8 p.m.), and #1 among boys 9-14 on Monday and Friday Night (6-8 p.m.).
Among individual night performances, Cartoon Network's Tuesday night Early Prime (6 - 8 p.m.) average delivery increased vs. the same time period last year among kids 2-11 (2%), 6-11 (8%) and 9-14 (8%), as well as among boys 6-11 (5%). A new episode premiere of the original animated series Uncle Grandpa (7 p.m.) led the evening with significant double-digit delivery growth across all targeted demos vs. last year-kids 2-11 up by 38%, kids 6-11 by 56%, kids 9-14 by 71%, boys 2-11 by 13%, boys 6-11 by 23% and boys 9-14 by 32%. Wednesday Night's Early Prime performance also earned delivery gains among kids 2-11 (2%).
The network's Saturday Morning action-adventure line-up (7-11 a.m.) also grew average delivery of kids 2-11 (2%) across the programming block. Among the standouts, a new episode of original animated series Legends of Chima (9:30 a.m.) scored delivery gains across all targeted demos-kids 2-11 grew by 22%, kids 6-11 by 19% and kids 9-14 by 1%. Additionally, new episode premieres of Tenkai Knights (7:30 a.m.) and Pokémon The Series XY (8:30 a.m.) both ranked #1 in their respective time periods among boys 9-14.
Last Monday's episode of the TNT hit Dallas took in more than 2.6 million viewers in Live + 3 delivery, a slight increase over the prior week. The drama also scored 1.2 million adults 25-54 in Live + 3 delivery.
Thursday's NBA on TNT action, featuring the San Antonio Spurs vs. Oklahoma City Thunder, averaged 1.9 million total viewers and a 1.3 U.S. household rating, increasing by +84% and +86% respectively over the comparable telecast last year (Chicago vs. Brooklyn).