NCAA Women's Finals Ratings Down - Multichannel

NCAA Women's Finals Ratings Down

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The NCAA women's college-basketball championship game failed to register a
ratings slam-dunk for ESPN.

Tuesday night's Connecticut-Tennessee game averaged a 3.49 rating, down 14
percent from the 4.06 generated for last year's Connecticut-Oklahoma
contest.

ESPN noted that this year's finals was the first to air on a Tuesday night --
prior contests were telecast on Sunday nights -- which could have contributed to
the ratings decline.

"A lot of viewers were also fixated on news coverage [of the U.S.-Iraq war],"
an ESPN spokesman said.

Overall, ESPN's coverage of the culminating contests of the women's-tournament -- included the two April 6
Final Four semifinals -- averaged a 2.99 rating, up 8 percent from a 2.76 last
year.

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