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NBC on top with its game

January 08, 2009|Scott Collins

NBC got a bit of good news last week as sports propelled the long-struggling network to first place during an otherwise quiet holiday period.

The network had the most-watched program for the week ending Jan. 4 with Saturday's NFL playoff game between the Indianapolis Colts and the San Diego Chargers. The matchup averaged a hefty 27.8 million total viewers, according to figures published Wednesday by Nielsen Media Research.

NBC also saw some decent numbers from a special Sunday preview of its new series "Superstars of Dance," which averaged 10.6 million.

Fox also benefited from holiday sports contests, including Friday's Sugar Bowl (13.4 million) and Thursday's Orange Bowl (9.3 million).

Otherwise, the week was given over mostly to repeats and scattered holiday specials. ABC's "Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve" show (8.6 million) easily dispatched NBC's "New Year's Eve With Carson Daly" (3.9 million).

Overall, NBC averaged 9.4 million viewers, trailed by Fox (8.7 million), CBS (8.4 million) and ABC (6.5 million).

On basic cable, college football ruled, with the No. 1 spot taken by ESPN's Tuesday game between Oklahoma State and Oregon (6.2 million).

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