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ESPN says the BCS Championship Game was third-most viewed telecast in cable history

Nick Bromberg
Dr. Saturday

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(USA Today Sports Images)

Monday's BCS Championship Game between Florida State and Auburn was the the third-most watched program in cable television history.

And it's right behind two other BCS Championship Game broadasts.

ESPN says that the Seminoles' 34-31 win over Auburn Monday night averaged 25.6 million viewers and a 14.4 rating. ESPN's "Megacast," which had different styles of broadcasts on ESPN's other networks, averaged 26.1 million viewers on ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNEWS.

The highest-rated cable telecast ever is the 2011 BCS Championship Game between Auburn and Oregon. That game averaged 27.3 million viewers. Second is last year's BCS Championship between Alabama and Notre Dame, which averaged 26.4 million.

Overall, ratings for all five of the BCS bowls were up over nine percent compared to last season. The games averaged 16.6 million viewers. The Chick-Fil-A Bowl on Dec. 31 also became ESPN's most-watched non-BCS bowl. That's the power of Johnny Manziel, who led Texas A&M to a 52-48 win over Duke in his final college football game. That game averaged almost 8.7 million viewers.

The highest rated local market for ESPN's college football coverage throughout the season should come as no surprise. That's Birmingham, Ala., which averaged a 9.2 rating. That number is nearly twice as high as second-place Greenville, SC, which averaged a 4.9 rating. The rest of the top 10 is pretty much what you'd expect as most are in the southeastern part of the country. Knoxville, Tenn. was third and followed by New Orleans, La., Nashville, Tenn. Memphis, Tenn., Columbus, Ohio, Jacksonville, Fla., Louisville, Ky. and Atlanta, Ga.

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Nick Bromberg is the assistant editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!

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