Without Tiger Woods or Phil Mickelson, TV ratings for the Masters last weekend were expected to be relatively low. Based on the final numbers, though, they turned out to be the lowest in more than 50 years.
According to a Sports Media Watch report, the weekend ratings for Bubba Watson's second win at Augusta National were the lowest for CBS since 1957 - the year before Arnold Palmer won the first of his four green jackets.
Earlier reports indicated a 7.8 overnight rating for the final round, when viewers watched Watson cruise to a three-shot win over Jordan Spieth and Jonas Blixt. The final rating for Sunday was a 6.8, which was down 28 percent from last year and tied 1993 as the lowest-rated final round since 1980. A total of 11 million viewers tuned in, down from 14.7 million in 2013 and 13.5 million in 2012, when Watson won the tournament for the first time in a playoff.
Combined with Saturday's coverage, which drew a 3.9 rating and was watched by 5.9 million viewers, CBS saw its lowest weekend numbers since it averaged a 3.4 rating in 1957. That year, Doug Ford rallied past Sam Snead to win by three in an event that saw the Masters debut of a 21-year-old from South Africa named Gary Player, who tied for 24th.
Last week marked the first time Woods has missed the season's first major since 1994, and Mickelson was one of several big names to miss the cut.