Ryder Cup TV Broadcast Gets Lowest Sunday Ratings Since 1991

October 2, 2014

If you think Team USA hit rock bottom in the 2014 Ryder Cup, wait until you see NBC's television ratings.

According to a Sports Business Daily report, the Ryder Cup's Sunday overnight rating of 1.8 (measured from 7 a.m.-1 p.m. Eastern) is the lowest Sunday rating since 1991, when NBC first began televising the event. That's a 54 percent decline from the Sunday rating at the 2012 Ryder Cup in suburban Chicago, and a 25 percent decline from the Sunday rating at the 2010 Ryder Cup in Wales.

Only two other Ryder Cups since 1991 have record a Sunday overnight rating below 3: The 2006 matches, a European blowout (18.5 to 9.5) at The K Club in Ireland, recorded a Sunday overnight rating of 2.7; and the 2010 matches, which were not concluded until Monday due to weather delays, drew a 2.4, with Europe winning 14.5 to 13.5 at Celtic Manor in Wales. Tiger Woods, who played in the 2006, 2010 and 2012 Ryder Cups, missed this year's event due to a back injury.

Unlike dramatic Ryder Cup finishes in 2010 and 2012, this year’s matches at Gleneagles in Scotland were decided by 11:30 a.m. Eastern on Sunday with Europe winning in another blowout, leaving NBC with 90 minutes of somewhat meaningless coverage.

Since 1999, when the Americans won in stunning fashion at the Country Club near Boston, only the 2012 matches (4.1) have recorded a Sunday overnight rating higher than 4. In 2012, Europe won eight of 12 singles matches to erase a 10-6 Saturday deficit and win 14.5 to 13.5.


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