ORLANDO, Fla. (May 15, 2012) – Golf Channel’s week-long coverage of THE PLAYERS was the highest-rated and most-watched week in the history of the network’s coverage of the PGA TOUR’s marquee event, which traditionally showcases one of the best fields of the year. Average ratings (.17) and viewers (171,000) for the week both were 15 percent higher than the previously high marks for each category in 2007 and 2010, respectively, and 38 and 44 percent higher than last year.
Golf Channel and NBC delivered a combined 22 hours of live tournament coverage and devoted more than 50 hours of news programming surrounding THE PLAYERS throughout the week, which was headlined by its franchise Live From news show.
• Friday’s Round Two (1.8/1,804,000) on Golf Channel was the most-watched of any early round for this tournament on record (1995-2012), seen by an average of 1.8 million viewers. Round One (1.2/1,126,000) was up five percent over 2011.
• Sunday’s Live From THE PLAYERS pre-game show (0.5/564,000) was the second-most-watched for this week in Golf Channel history.
• NBC’s coverage of THE PLAYERS was the best in three years, with average weekend viewers topping 4 million and besting last year by 21 percent.
THE PLAYERS viewership milestones continue the momentum of record ratings for the sport of golf. So far this year, both Golf Channel (up 18%) and NBC (up 32%) have seen significant lift for PGA TOUR coverage over the same time period in 2011, with two-year increases up 62 percent for Golf Channel and 38 percent for NBC.
Coming off five consecutive quarters of growth since becoming part of the NBC Sports Group, Golf Channel is the fastest-growing network on cable television among those reaching 80 million or more homes. The network celebrated 2011 as the most-watched year in its 17-year history and began 2012 by scoring its most-watched quarter ever.
Also coming off its best quarter ever, Golf Channel’s digital platforms recorded their best PLAYERS week for both GolfChannel.com and its mobile platforms.
• Page views for GolfChannel.com increased 56 percent over the same time period in 2011 and five percent over the previous high mark for THE PLAYERS week in 2008. The site also logged 79 percent more unique visitors than 2011 and 38 percent more than the previous high in 2010.
• Page views for Golf Channel’s mobile applications were 103 percent higher than 2011, which previously held the record.
-NBC Sports Group-