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Cable Ratings: Wrestling a Winner in January

Wrestling and jump rope helped USA Network and Disney Channel to a near tie win in cable's January ratings. USA eked out a win with 2.74 million total viewers in prime, its WWE wrestling accounting for nearly ten of the month's 20 most viewed shows, according to Nielsen Media Research. Non-ad-supported Disney came in with 2.72 million viewers, on the strength of Jump In, its original movie about jump roping that premiered Jan. 12.

With 8.46 million viewers, Jump In became Disney's most-watched original movie premiere ever - besting the now cultural phenomenon High School Musical - and ranked as January's top cable program. It was followed by the premiere of Disney's new live-action series Cory in the House, which averaged 7.7 million viewers.

Top finishers after USA and Disney for the month were TNT with 2.03 million viewers in prime, TBS with 1.76 million and A&E with 1.68 million.

For the week ending Jan. 28, NBC Universal's USA and Sci Fi both had reason to celebrate. Sci Fi's Battlestar Galactica and The Dresden Files saw ratings bumps in their second weeks on Sunday night (Jan. 28). Dresden averaged 1.89 million viewers (up from 1.73 million for its series premiere) and Battlestar averaged 2.05 million (up from 1.8 million last week). The shows' Jan. 21 premiere numbers may have been diluted by competition from the AFC Championship game on CBS, which drew nearly 50 million that night.

At USA, both Monk and Psych posted solid numbers for their second week of episodes on Friday (Jan. 26). With 5 million and 3.71 million viewers respectively, each drew an audience just smaller than their season premieres.

In other cable news, VH1 will run a marathon and an unaired episode of Armed & Famous, the reality show cast off by its corporate sibling CBS, this Saturday (Feb. 3). Armed, which follows C-list celebs as they train to be police officers, was slated for seven episodes, but only five have been made and four aired by CBS. VH1 will run the last two episodes if producers get the greenlight on making them.