ESPN released the ratings information for both of the College Football Playoff semifinal games Saturday night, and it seems like the fans don’t really mind blowouts.
Alabama’s 24-7 win over Washington (3 p.m. ET kickoff) was up 17 percent from 2015’s Clemson-Oklahoma matchup at 4 p.m., while the Clemson-Ohio State blowout was up five percent from 2015’s Alabama-Michigan State prime-time semifinal.
Both games also saw an increase in streaming audience.
The streaming audience was up 57 percent, 16 percent and 40 percent, in average minute audience, unique viewers and total minutes watched, respectively, from last year’s Tigers-Sooners game.
The streaming audience also saw increases in all key metrics — up 29 percent, 12 percent, and 32 percent, in average minute audience, unique viewers and total minutes watched, respectively, from last year’s Spartans-Crimson Tide game.
Strictly accounting for ESPN ratings, the Alabama-Washington semifinal (10.9 overnight) was up 12 percent from last year’s afternoon semifinal between Clemson and Oklahoma (9.7 overnight). This year’s Clemson-Ohio State prime-time matchup (10.0 overnight) didn’t have as drastic an increase, but still topped the primetime game between Alabama and Michigan State (9.9 overnight) last year.
ESPN also released ratings information for individual markets, where Columbus, Ohio, was No. 2 (behind Birmingham, Ala.) with a 23.9 for the Peach Bowl and No. 1 with a 35.1 for the Fiesta Bowl.