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NCAA Ratings Highest Since 1994

March 25, 2002

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NEW YORK (AP) _ The NCAA tournament heads to the Final Four with its highest overnight TV ratings since 1994.

Through eight days of coverage, CBS Sports’ average overnight rating of 6.4 is 10 percent higher than the 5.8 in 2001, and a 7 percent improvement on each of the previous two years.

In 1994, the average rating to this point was 6.6.

The 2000 and ’01 NCAA tournaments finished with the lowest national ratings in the 20 years that CBS has televised the event.

The telecasts of Sunday’s two regional finals averaged a 7.6 overnight rating, up 3 percent from last year’s 7.4.

Kansas’ victory over Oregon in the Midwest Regional, the day’s first game, had a 6.3 rating, 9 percent higher than last year for Michigan State-Temple.

Maryland’s win over Connecticut in a back-and-forth East Regional final, Saturday’s second game, had an 8.8 overnight mark, a 4 percent hike from the 8.5 for Arizona vs. Illinois in 2001.

Overnight ratings measure the 53 largest TV markets in the United States, covering about 65 percent of the country.

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