COLUMBUS, OH – NOVEMBER 26: Curtis Samuel #4 of the Ohio State Buckeyes rushes for the game-winning touchdown in overtime against the Michigan Wolverines at Ohio Stadium on November 26, 2016 in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)

Michigan at Ohio State was a game of epic proportions. Both teams were vying for a spot in the College Football Playoff and both were ranked in the top four. With the game hitting overtime, it’s only natural that one of sports’ best rivalries was the highest-rated college football game of the season.

The game produced by ESPN and airing on ABC received a huge 10.4 overnight rating. And adding to the numbers was an online audience of 279,000 viewers per minute making it the most-streamed college football this season.

The rating for Michigan-Ohio State was just below the 2006 edition of the rivalry which is the highest overnight for a college football game on ABC. That game had an 11.5 overnight.

For this season, the three highest-rated games have aired on ABC, Michigan-Ohio State, Notre Dame-Texas and Louisville-Clemson.

As for the local ratings, they come across as follows:

1. Columbus — 43.6
2. Dayton — 36.8
3. Detroit — 30.8
4. Cleveland — 30.1
5. CIncinnati — 20.5
6. Fort Myers — 16.9
7. Birmingham — 16.7
8. Oklahoma City — 14.1
9. Knoxville and West Palm Beach — 13.2

To say that Michigan-Ohio State reasonated with viewers on Saturday is an understatement. For the game to garner a 10.4 overnight for a noon ET kickoff is very good. Final numbers will be out later and we should see a very good viewership for the traditional rivalry game.

ESPN/ABC continues to have the dominant college football package this season and it looks like it will surpass the SEC on CBS for highest-rated and most watched CFB series.


About Ken Fang

Ken has been covering the sports media in earnest at his own site, Fang's Bites since May 2007 and at Awful Announcing since March 2013.

He provides a unique perspective having been an award-winning radio news reporter in Providence and having worked in local television.

Fang celebrates the four Boston Red Sox World Championships in the 21st Century, but continues to be a long-suffering Cleveland Browns fan.

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