Tourney takes CBS back to top in Nielsen ratings

NEW YORK (AP) — CBS may not have singing and dancing, but basketball helped end its three-week stretch away from television’s top spot.

The Nielsen Co. said Tuesday that CBS was the most-watched TV network last week, ending three weeks with Fox on top. Two down-to-the-wire NCAA men’s basketball tournament games — Connecticut-Arizona and Kentucky-Ohio State — finished among Nielsen’s top 15 shows.

A brief hiatus into reruns for some of CBS’ top scripted shows ended, also boosting the network’s numbers.

The return of “Dancing With the Stars” on ABC drew 22.7 million viewers last week, more than the Thursday edition of Fox’s “American Idol” and less than the Wednesday edition. “Dancing With the Stars” also boosted the show that follows it on ABC’s schedule, “Castle,” into Nielsen’s top 10.

CBS averaged 10.1 million viewers for the week (6.2 rating, 11 share). Fox was second with 8.9 million viewers (5.2, 9), ABC had 7.9 million (4.9, 8), NBC had 5.8 million (3.7, 6), ION Television had 1.2 million and the CW had 1.1 million (both 0.7, 1).

Among the Spanish-language networks, Univision led with an average of 4 million viewers (2.1 rating, 4 share), Telemundo had 1.3 million (0.7, 1), TeleFutura had 770,000 (0.4, 1), Estrella had 240,000 and Azteca had 220,000 (both 0.1, 0).

NBC’s “Nightly News” topped the evening newscasts with an average of 9.2 million viewers (5.9, 12). ABC’s “World News” was second with 8.3 million (5.6, 11) and the “CBS Evening News” had 6 million viewers (3.9, 8).

A ratings point represents 1,159,000 households, or 1 percent of the nation’s estimated 115.9 million TV homes. The share is the percentage of in-use televisions tuned to a given show.

For the week of March 21-27, the top 10 shows, their networks and viewerships: “American Idol” (Wednesday), Fox, 23.95 million; “Dancing With the Stars,” ABC, 22.66 million; “American Idol” (Thursday), Fox, 21.3 million; “NCIS,” CBS, 19.46 million; “NCIS: Los Angeles,” CBS, 16.56 million; “60 Minutes,” CBS, 14.81 million; “Castle,” ABC, 12.03 million; “Undercover Boss,” CBS, 11.87 million; “The Good Wife,” CBS, 11.7 million; “CSI: Miami,” 11.19 million.

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ABC is owned by The Walt Disney Co. CBS is owned by CBS Corp. CW is a joint venture of Warner Bros. Entertainment and CBS Corp. Fox and My Network TV are units of News Corp. NBC and Telemundo are owned by General Electric Co. ION Television is owned by ION Media Networks. TeleFutura is a division of Univision. Azteca America is a wholly owned subsidiary of TV Azteca S.A. de C.V.

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Online:

http://www.nielsen.com

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