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ESPN Scores Another Weekly Ratings Win

ESPN remained undefeated in the weekly primetime cable ratings race this Fall, winning its fourth straight week since launching its Monday Night Football season last month.

The sports network drew 3.0 million viewers during the period of Sept. 28 to Oct. 4 to easily best all other cable networks, according to Nielsen. Fox News was a distant second with 1.9 million viewers, followed by USA Network’s 1.6 million watchers and Disney Channel’s 1.4 million viewers.

HGTV (1.3 million viewers); TBS and History (tied with 1.2 million); Discovery Channel and AMC (1.1 million) and Food Network (1 million) rounded out the top 10 most watched networks for the week.

Nickelodeon and Fox News shared the top spot among cable networks on a 24-hour basis, followed by Disney, ESPN and Adult Swim, according to Nielsen. ESPN was tops among adults 18-49, followed by TBS and AMC.

The Oct. 4 finale of AMC’s Fear The Walking Dead was the second most-watched show during the week, averaging 6.8 million viewers, according to Nielsen.

Most Watched Shows During Period of Sept. 28 to Aug. 4

DateShowNetworkTotal Viewers

9/28   MNF – Green Bay-Kansas City        ESPN               13.5 million

10/4   Fear The Walking Dead                    AMC                  6.8 million

10/3  Football: Ole Miss/Florida                  ESPN                3.7 million

10/1   TNF – Baltimore/Pittsburgh               NFL Network    3.6 million

9/28   Monday Night Raw (8-9 p.m.)            USA                 3.4 million

9/28   SportsCenter                                     ESPN               3.4 million

9/28   Monday Night Raw (9-10 p.m.)          USA                 3.3 million

9/29   The O’Reilly Factor                            Fox News        3.2 million

10/4   NASCAR Sprint Cup Race                 NBCN             3.2 million

10/1   The O’Reilly Factor                            Fox News        3.2 million

10/4   Alaska: The Last Frontier                 Discovery         3.2 million

Source: Nielsen

R. Thomas Umstead serves as senior content producer, programming for Multichannel News, Broadcasting + Cable and Next TV. During his more than 30-year career as a print and online journalist, Umstead has written articles on a variety of subjects ranging from TV technology, marketing and sports production to content distribution and development. He has provided expert commentary on television issues and trends for such TV, print, radio and streaming outlets as Fox News, CNBC, the Today show, USA Today, The New York Times and National Public Radio. Umstead has also filmed, produced and edited more than 100 original video interviews, profiles and news reports featuring key cable television executives as well as entertainers and celebrity personalities.