This year’s NCAA men’s basketball tournament is the most-watched tournament since since 2005, CBS and Turner Sports announced Monday.
An average of 9.4 million people have watched the tournament, compared to 8.5 million viewers that watched 2010 coverage. Last year’s coverage did not include Turner networks.
This was the first year CBS and Turner brokered a deal to show all games across both CBS and Turner platforms, which includes TNT, TBS and truTV.
Sunday’s coverage of the regional finals -- which included major upset No. 11 Virginia Commonwealth University knocking the top-seeded Kansas out of the bracket, followed by No. 4 Kentucky beating No. 2 North Carolina after a very close game -- averaged 12.8 million viewers, CBS and Turner added.
That’s up 6 percent from last year’s 11.9 million viewers, and the highest average for Sunday regional finals since 2005, which featured the thrilling, double overtime match-up when Michigan beat Kentucky, and North Carolina’s victory over Wisconsin.