Women’s NCAA Tournament final crushes rating records
from Sportsnaut, with Jason Burgos, and from YardBarker.com/www.yardbarker.com
The women’s NCAA Tournament final had a lot of momentum heading into Sunday afternoon, and the major interest in the game proved to be legitimate as the matchup between LSU and Iowa shattered all previous records for a women’s final.
On Monday night, ESPN reported that the women’s NCAA Tournament final set new ratings records with the game averaging just under 10 million viewers (9.9) for the broadcast on ABC and ESPN 2. At one point during the game, the audience peaked with an outstanding 12.6 million viewers.
The ratings for this year’s final were up 103% from last year’s game between UConn and South Carolina, which scored 4.85 million on ESPN and ESPN 2. This was the first time that a women’s national championship game was aired on network television since a 1995 clash between UConn and Tennessee. That game averaged just over 7 million viewers for its broadcast on CBS.
While the men’s NCAA Tournament was a major focus of the sports world over the last few weeks, the women’s tourney caught fire among basketball fans. Ratings for the 2023 tournament got stronger as the event moved along and as Iowa superstar, Caitlin Clark, became a household name.
Heading into the Final Four for the men’s and women’s NCAA Tournaments, the ladies’ event was on par with the gentleman’s in terms of media coverage and was doing even better when it came to ticket interest.
It was reported last week that while the men’s Final Four saw a steep decline in ticket value on secondary markets as several highly ranked teams were bounced from the NCAA Tournament, prices for the women’s Final Four saw a notable uptick heading into the week.