Penn State-Auburn was second-most-watched college football game in Week 3

·2 min read

The numbers are in and a heck of a lot of people decided to tune in to last weekend’s episode of ESPN’s College GameDay from Penn State’s campus. Whether it was because of Penn State or not, Penn State played host to the most-watched College GameDay since the final week of the 2019 regular season.

According to ESPN, the viewership of CollegeGameDay was up 84% from 2020 and 7% from 2019. It was also the best Week 3 for the iconic traveling pregame show since 2016, and the final hour delivered the best numbers for the final hour of the show since 2019.

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Now, it doesn’t take a lot to figure out why the numbers are so much higher than a year ago. This time last year, not every conference was even playing college football. The Big Ten and Pac-12 (and MAC and Mountain West Conference) had yet to begin playing games, leaving the audience for most of those fanbases with no interest in tuning in.

As for the game itself, Penn State’s win over Auburn was the second-most-watched game of the weekend across all networks covering college football. CBS claimed the top spot with its SEC Game of the Week between Alabama and Florida in the mid-afternoon time slot. According to a press release from CBS, an average of 7.863 million watched the Alabama-Florida game. ESPN claims an average of 7,6 million tuned in to the Penn State-Auburn game.

ESPN is going to roll out the national spotlight once again in two weeks with another primetime game in Happy Valley. Penn State’s Big Ten matchup with Indiana on Oct. 2 has been confirmed for a 7:30 p.m. ET kickoff on ABC. We won’t be expecting to see College GameDay make a return trip for that game, and the numbers for the game may struggle to clear the bar set by the Auburn game, but any opportunity in the national spotlight is one to embrace.

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