BET Enrolls College Reality for Sophomore Season

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Buoyed by the ratings performance of its first reality series College Hill, Black Entertainment Television said it will bring back the college/reality genre for a sophomore run in 2005.

Through March 7, the series — which chronicles the lives of eight students at Southern University — has averaged a 1.0 household rating and more than 1 million viewers through six episodes, according to ABC Cable Networks Group analysis of Nielsen Media Research data.

The show’s Jan. 25 premiere set a BET ratings record for a series debut with a 1.41 rating, besting the 0.93 garnered by the Jan. 23, 2003 premiere of music video show 106 & Park, said network executives.

BET spokesman Michael Lewellen said that while the show’s college-based reality concept will remain, the network most likely change the venue and the format of the show.

“We’ve learned some things from the success of the show that we might do differently next time around, but a college-based reality show will again be apart of our plans for next year,” Llewellen said.

BET has been supporting College Hill with a “Watch and Win Scholarship Sweepstakes,” giving away more than $25,000 in scholarship money to either college-bound or college-enrolled students. During each College Hill installment, an on-screen password appears, prompting viewers to log on to a Web site ( and enter the sweepstakes.