In my best Garrett Morris as Chico Escuela voice: internet been a berry, berry good to me! It has been my pleasure to post the daily-ish cable sports tables for the past couple of years. I regret I can no longer do it, but data access did me in.
Here are some things you can do in my absence to get quite a bit (but not quite all) of the data I was posting:
If ratings data is your thing, there’s a really good site run by a couple of former TV execs called ShowBuzzDaily (showbuzzdaily.com). On the daily cable sports front it’s not as comprehensive as what I was doing, but it’s still very useful. They post the top 150 daily cable shows sorted by adults 18-49 (though average viewership for people age 2 and up (“P2+) is included too). They attempt to remove repeats and focus on originals.
As a general rule you will find most of the top performing cable sports shows (PTI, Around the Horn, Highly Questionable, the 6P, midnight and other SportsCenters and First Take will almost always be there. Most days lately, Undisputed isn’t there.
On Tuesday mornings around 8AM ET (excluding weeks with holidays) ShowBuzzDaily posts its weekly “SKEDBALL” this is a roundup of the weekends sporting events on both broadcast and cable. Sometimes it misses some minor stuff but it’s phenomenal for sports TV ratings fans.
Sports Business Journal
If you’re an employee at some company or an athletic director, assistant AD etc and you’re not already subscribing to the Sports Business Journal/Sports Business Daily — why not!? They post a lot of ratings info. A special thanks over the years to John Ourand and Austin Karp who regularly provided overnight ratings data for events big and small before others.
Sports Media Watch
If you like the general overview but you don’t need to see data as soon as its out, the reliable and long-standing sportsmediawatch.com basically consolidates info available on Sports Business Daily and ShowBuzzDaily and other sources into daily-ish recaps. Paulsen who runs the site does a great job providing context on the longer view via charts.
Note: I will hopefully re-write this section to make it more useful but for starters the two most useful Google tools for you to know about are:
Google alerts require some playing around with depending on what you want. Let’s say you want to get alerts about Major League Baseball TV ratings. I’d start out erring on the side of getting more than less. I’d create alerts for “Baseball TV ratings” “Major League Baseball TV ratings,” “MLB TV Ratings” “Baseball metered market ratings” “Baseball household ratings” etc. and see how it goes.
Like I said, it takes some time to get it right but for me the results are definitely worth it.
Sort by date
This can really come in handy when you’re searching for past/historic data. On any Google search, once the results come up you’ll see a button on the top right under the search box that says “Tools” if you click it you’ll be able to filter by last hour, day, week, month, year, etc. Again, this is really useful if you want to know what the overnight rating for the Fiesta Bowl was in say, 2009, You can just set the custom date range for say 1/1/09 to 1/8/09 and eliminate all results that came before or after.
Note: this too I will hopefully rewrite adding much more detail. The truth is even after more than two years I haven’t figured out ALL the great ratings sources on twitter. Between national TV network PR, local RSN PR and league PR, and media beat reporters there are a multitude of sources.
But here’s a cheat I’ve used myself to start my day over the last 4 months (a period where I’ve been going to bed early, getting up early and generally making sure I was off Twitter 12-14 hours at a time) to make sure I didn’t miss anything big: I’d scroll through Twitter feeds from @RichardDeitsch @Ourand_SBJ @AustinKarp @Mulvihill79 (he’s a Fox employee, but he’s crazy smart about TV ratings and he sometimes shares his smarts on Twitter) and @Paulsen_SMW before doing anything else.
I had a lot of fun and encountered many, many awesome people. I hope our paths continue to cross.
PR teams from ESPN to Golf Channel to Univision and RSNs like SNY were great to me, thank you!
A special shoutout to Richard Deitsch: I don’t agree with all (or maybe any) of his politics, but he’s a good man. And he’s an extra-special good man in my book because more than anyone, he legitimized my site and twitter feed when he didn’t even know who was behind it! I’m not exactly sure why he did that but my bet is it was because I was useful.