Ohio State-Notre Dame is Most-Watched Regular-Season College Football Game on NBC Since 1993

By Chase Brown on September 25, 2023 at 2:34 pm
Kyle McCord

Ohio State's win over Notre Dame was the most-watched regular-season college football game on NBC in three decades.

On Monday, an NBC press release revealed that the top-10 matchup between the Buckeyes and the Irish averaged 10.5 million viewers on Saturday and peaked at 14.2 million for Ohio State's game-winning touchdown drive. The television audience makes Ohio State-Notre Dame NBC's most-watched regular-season college football game since the "Game of the Century" in 1993, when No. 2 Notre Dame defeated No. 1 Florida State 31-24 in South Bend, Indiana.

According to Ross Dellenger of Yahoo Sports, the viewership for Ohio State-Notre Dame is on par with averages of the 2023 NBA Finals between the Heat and Nuggets and the 2022 MLB World Series between the Astros and Phillies. It is also four times the viewership of the 2023 Stanley Cup Finals between the Golden Knights and Panthers.

Additional information shared in the press release includes a statistic that Ohio State-Notre Dame had an Average Minute Audience (AMA) of 605,000 viewers on Peacock and NBC Sports Digital platforms. That number ranks as the best AMA for an NBC Sports college football game simulcast in the network's history.

Moreover, excluding Labor Day weekend, the battle between the Buckeyes and the Irish was the most-watched primetime regular-season college football game on any network since 2018. In the over three-and-a-half-hour window of the contest, Ohio State-Notre Dame registered a national household rating of 5.1/16.

Columbus was the top metered market for the game, with nearly 30% of households in Ohio State’s home city watching, followed closely by Cleveland and Cincinnati. The top 10 metered markets for the matchup:

  1. Columbus, Ohio 29.9/65
  2. Cleveland 21.1/54
  3. Cincinnati 12.8/33
  4. Indianapolis 11.6/33
  5. Detroit 11.0/32
  6. Chicago 7.0/24
  7. West Palm Beach 6.6/19
  8. Tampa 6.2/19
  9. Nashville 6.1/18
  10. Norfolk 6.1/17
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