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TV By the Numbers: Basketball, Golf Continue to Rule

Donovan Mitchell #45 of the Utah Jazz and Evan Fournier #10 of the Orlando Magic fight for the ball during the first quarter at Amway Center on February 27, 2021 in Orlando, Florida.
(Image credit: Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images)

This is a quick snapshot of TV by the numbers for the week of  Feb. 22-28, revealing the most-watched shows and networks using glass-level data from Vizio’s Inscape, and the top shows and networks by TV ad impressions with insights via iSpot.tv.

Most-Watched Shows and Networks

Via Inscape, Vizio’s TV data product with glass-level insights from a panel of more than 17 million active and opted-in smart TVs. Data is linear, live TV only and includes all episode types (new and reruns). Rankings are by percent share duration (i.e., time spent watching).

Sports continue to capture the most watch-time, led by college basketball (1.56% of all minutes watched), followed by NBA games (1.16%) and PGA Tour Golf (0.92%). SportsCenter also saw increased viewership (0.51%), up to No. 13 from No. 23 the previous week. Thanks in part to marathons, Home Town and The First 48 jumped up the ranking, to No. 10 and No. 23, respectively. Aside from college basketball, only three other programs maintained their ranking week-over-week: Good Morning America, Ridiculousness and ABC World News Tonight With David Muir.

Most-watched shows on TV by percent share duration for Feb. 22-28

Thanks in part to PGA Tour Golf and the 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards, NBC rose into first place with 6.84% of minutes watched during the week. Hallmark had the biggest ranking jump compared to the previous week, up to No. 10 from No. 16, with help from marathons of The Golden Girls. Chart newcomers compared to the previous week included MTV and A&E, taking No. 24 and No. 25, respectively, fueled by marathons of their own (Ridiculousness and The First 48).

Most-watched networks on TV by percent share duration for Feb. 22-28

Top Shows and Networks by TV Ad Impressions

Via iSpot.tv, the always-on TV ad measurement and attribution company. Rankings are by TV ad impressions, for new episodes only. 

College basketball squeezed past the NBA to take first place for TV ad impressions, with games generating over 1.44 billion impressions vs. 1.41 billion. PGA Tour Golf took third place with 778 million impressions, a 50.12% week-over-week increase. The 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards generated 346.8 million TV ad impressions while American Idol, which aired at the same time, generated 282 million impressions.

Top shows by TV ad impressions for Feb. 22-28

CBS maintained its first-place position, receiving slightly more TV ad impressions (5.2 billion) compared to the previous week (4.9 billion), driven in part by new episodes of The Price Is Right, The Young and the Restless and CBS This Morning — although college basketball also contributed 351 million TV ad impressions to the network’s total. Golf rose up the ranking to No. 12 with 511.1 million TV ad impressions, 67% of which came from PGA Tour broadcasts. HGTV also saw a week-over-week increase, up to 446.2 million impressions from the previous week’s 379.8 million, with Home Town delivering the top impression-count for the network (89.1 million).

Top networks by TV ad impressions Feb. 22-28