The game, which was held on January 2 this year due to the January 1 landing on Sunday, is down about 40 percent from last year. Ohio StateUtah Radio (16.6 million). The previous Rose Bowl drop was 13.6 million LBP Stanford-Iowa in 2016.
The Rose Bowl was still the most watched semifinal of the season, surpassing December 31 Alabama–Kansas State Sugar Bowl (9.1 million), and Dec. 30 Tennessee–Clemson Orange Bowl (8.7 million), both of which are also on ESPN. Tulane’s dramatic 46-45 victory USC The Cotton Bowl, which aired right before the Rose, drew just 4.2 million, the lowest of any six-course New Year’s bowl since the current format began in 2014, and lower than this year’s Gator, Cheez-It, and Alamo bowls, according to for ESPN.
However, thanks to the semifinal garnering the highest viewership numbers in five years – 22.4 million at the Georgia-Ohio State Peach Bowl and 21.7 million at the TCU-Michigan Fiesta Bowl ESPN’s entire New Year’s Six package averaged nearly 13 million viewers, the most-watched lineup in three years.
The Rose Bowl, originating in 1902, has been the most watched bowl annually since long before the creation of the BCS and, later, the College Football Playoff. It regularly drew more than 20 million viewers throughout the 2000s and early 2000s—reaching 35.6 million for the 2006 Texas-USC National Championship—but has been gradually declining since years without hosting a semifinal.
Last month, the Roses reluctantly signed an agreement to allow the College Football Playoff to expand to 12 teams in 2024-25. Bowl officials were seeking a guarantee that the game would retain its exclusive 2 p.m. PT TV window on New Year’s Day when CFP negotiated its next contract.
Pasadena will host the Quarterfinals next season as part of the CFP’s current rotation, and is then expected to host the Quarterfinals in the first two years of the new system.
How has view tracking changed since 2020
It’s important to note that Rose Bowl viewership, like all programming and especially live sports, prior to 2020 did not include out-of-home audiences, that is, people watching in bars, restaurants, hotels, and viewing parties at other homes. That could add thousands or even millions of viewers to the audience measurements for major sporting events, meaning that the older Rose Bowls had greater eyeball totals than the officials’ totals.
Despite the low level of new-game audience, it still ranks second in the demographic of prime viewers in cable—the numbers brands want to see when paying for in-game TV advertising—behind the Bills-Bengals “Monday Night Football” telecast. Which was notable for the horrible injury the Bills player had that ultimately ended the game early. Like everything else on TV, the Rose Bowl has also been played amid the ongoing cord-cutting trend that has taken more than 30 million American households out of the cable ecosystem over the past five years, with new streaming service subscriptions not closing the gap. Live sports remain the most resistant to the television industry’s ongoing audience problems but aren’t immune – even though viewership numbers for this game are shockingly low.
ESPN currently pays $470 million annually to broadcast the College Football Playoff Final, plus a separate fee for the television rights to the Rose, Orange, Cotton, and Sugar bowls that brings the annual combined rights cost to more than $600 million. – something
(Photo: Kirby Lee/USA Today)
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