April 25, 2024

Brighton Journal

Complete News World

Iowa State's win over LSU breaks the record for most-watched women's college basketball game

Iowa State's win over LSU breaks the record for most-watched women's college basketball game

When asked what she said to Caitlin Clark after Iowa State's 94-87 win over LSU in the Elite Eight game in Albany – a game that saw Clark outscore 41 points and… He tied the NCAA Tournament single-game record with nine 3-pointers “What did I say to her? I said, I'm sure glad you're leaving. I said, girl, you are something else. He's never seen anything like it.”

No one has ever seen anything like what we see now when it comes to watching women's college basketball. Clark has broken plenty of records over her career, and now she and those who played in Monday night's game can add this to their resume: They played in the most-watched women's college basketball game in history.

Iowa State wins over LSU averaging 12.3 million viewers It peaked at 16 million viewers. This broke the previous record set last year for LSU's win over Iowa in last year's championship game, a game that averaged 9.9 million viewers and peaked at 12.6 million viewers.

UConn's win over USC in Monday's other Elite Eight game drew 6.7 million viewers, which would have surpassed every viewership for the title game since 1996 except for last year's tournament.

Before last year, The previous record for an NCAA women's basketball game in the ESPN era (since 1996) was 5.68 million viewers for UConn's title win at Oklahoma in 2002, a game that featured Sue Bird and Diana Taurasi. The previous record for any women's basketball game before last year's title game was 8.1 million viewers for the national semifinal game between Virginia and Stanford on CBS in 1992.

See also  PFT Week 14 NFL Picks 2023 Florio vs. Sims

Pulse bulletin

Free daily sports updates straight to your inbox. subscription

Free daily sports updates straight to your inbox. subscription

He buysBuy the Pulse newsletter

But all of this existed in a world before Clark and company sent viewership into new orbits. Iowa beats Colorado in the Sweet 16 averaging 6.9 million viewers. These are numbers that were previously unheard of in the women's game for that round.

Now comes the national semifinals Friday night on ESPN. Last few years The Iowa-South Carolina semifinals were watched by an average of 5.5 million viewers, the largest audience ever for a semifinal. Both semifinal games averaged 4.5 million viewers, the fourth most-watched college final. The final four weekends of all of 2023 – including the tournament – garnered an average of 6.5 million viewers.

This year's semifinal — undefeated South Carolina versus NC State in the early game followed by Iowa State versus UConn — will undoubtedly break last year's Final Four record. UConn has historically been the sport's standard-bearer for women's basketball viewership and Clark has taken the sport to levels never seen before.

Required reading

(Photo: Andy Lyons/Getty Images)