Weekend ratings breakdown: Final Four best since '05

USA TODAY Sports

A big weekend for CBS and the Final Four, while baseball and basketball were mostly the same and hockey was down.

The Weekend Ratings Breakdown is a weekly, Monday afternoon analysis of the ratings for sporting events on the four major networks (ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC). The numbers come from Sports Business Daily.

Saturday, April 6

1 p.m. ET - Best of College Basketball 2013 (CBS): 0.5

1 p.m. ET - National Heads Up Poker Championship (NBC): 0.5

2 p.m. ET - High School Slam Dunk & 3-Point Contest (CBS): 0.7

3 p.m. ET - PGA: Valero Texas Open, Third Round (NBC): 1.4

3 p.m. ET - NCAA Fandemonium (CBS): 0.7

3:30 p.m. ET - NCAA Human Highlight Reel (CBS): 0.6

4 p.m. ET - MLB On Fox: Regional Coverage (NYY vs. DET, STL vs. SF, LAA vs. TEX) (Fox): 2.3

4 p.m. ET - ESPN Sports Saturday (ABC): 0.6

6 p.m. ET - NCAA Final Four: Louisville vs. Wichita State (CBS): 8.9

8:45 p.m. ET - NCAA Final Four: Michigan vs. Syracuse (CBS): 10.2

Analysis: The overnights are a little useless for the NCAA broadcasts because the final numbers and viewership totals are in, so let's talk about them. Louisville-Wichita State drew 14.4 million viewers, up four percent from Louisville/Kentucky from last year (13.9 million). One might be surprised that a Wichita State team was able to boost the ratings, but never forget how much casual viewers love a potential Cinderella in this tournament. Michigan-Syracuse drew 17.1 million viewers in the late game, up six percent from Ohio State/Kansas (16.6 million). No real surprise there. The Final Four drew the most viewers to CBS for the event since 2005, averaging 15.7 million viewers.

Meanwhile, MLB on Fox returned for its final season of regular, weekly coverage. The 2.3 overnight was the same as last year, when Red Sox/Tigers was the featured game. Overnights aren't available for last year's Texas Open, but the final rating was a 2.7 for last year's event, so expect the final numbers to be down big with no Tiger involved.

Sunday, April 7

12:30 p.m. ET - NHL: St. Louis vs. Detroit (NBC): 0.7

12:30 p.m. ET - NBA Countdown (ABC): 1.2

1 p.m. ET - NBA: New York vs. Oklahoma City (ABC): 2.8

1 p.m. ET - Pro Bull Riding (CBS): 0.6

1:15 p.m. ET - NASCAR: STP Gas Booster 500 (Fox): 4.0

2 p.m. ET - NCAA Basketball All-Star Game (CBS): 0.5

3 p.m. ET - PGA: Valero Texas Open, Final Round (NBC): 2.1

3:30 p.m. ET - NBA: LA Lakers vs. LA Clippers (ABC): 3.6

4 p.m. ET - NCAA D-II Championship (CBS): 0.6

Analysis: The NHL saw its lowest ratings of the season on NBC for the Red Wings and a St. Louis team that hadn't been featured nationally in a long time on national television. There's no real comparable to last year, because the league was ending its season on the same weekend in 2012.

The NBA also doesn't have a real comparable to last year, since this weekend last year featured a single game rather than a doubleheader. The one game aired, New York-Chicago, drew a 2.9.

Golf was once again down big without Tiger. There is also no overnight available for 2012, but the final rating for the last round of this event last year hit a 4.3.

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