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Super Bowl Surpass Final Episode of M*A*S*H As Most Watched TV Show in U.S. TV History.

Byline: Maury Brown

The 2009 NFL season concluded with another record as Super Bowl XLIV reached a total audience of 153.4 million viewers, making it the most-watched show in U.S. television history according to Nielsen Media Research. The Colts-Saints championship game topped the previous mark of 151.6 million total viewers set last year (Cardinals-Steelers in Super Bowl XLIII). Super Bowls account for the 19 most-watched programs in history in terms of total audience.

Most-Watched TV Programs, Total Viewers

Game

Total Viewers

Super Bowl XLIV (Colts-Saints), 2/7/10

153.4 million

Super Bowl XLIII (Cardinals-Steelers), 2/1/09

151.6 million

Super Bowl XLII (Giants-Patriots), 2/3/08

148.3 million

Super Bowl XXXVIII (Patriots-Panthers), 2/1/04

144.4 million

Super Bowl XL (Steelers-Seahawks), 2/5/06

141.4 million

Source: NFL, Nielsen Media Research

In addition, a record average of 106.5 million viewers watched Super Bowl XLIV -- topping the previous mark of 106 million for the series finale of M*A*S*H in 1983 and an eight percent increase over last year's Super Bowl (98.7 million viewers).

Super Bowl XLIV earned a 45.0 household rating marking the highest-rated Super Bowl in 14 years (46.0 rating for Cowboys-Steelers in Super Bowl XXX, January 1996) and a seven percent increase over last year's 42.0.

Source: National Football League

See a complete game recap, plus the Betty White/Abe Vigoda Snickers, The Last Airbender, Denny's screaming chickens, and Tim Tebow commericals from The Biz of Football's live game blog of Super Bowl 44 (http://bizoffootball.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=626:live-blog-super-bowl-xliv-sb44&catid=34:nfl-news&Itemid=53#comments).

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Maury Brown is the Founder and President of the Business of Sports Network (http://www.businessofsportsnetwork.com/), which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He is available as a freelance writer. Brown's full bio is here. (http://businessofsportsnetwork.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=6&Itemid=15) He looks forward to your comments via email and can be contacted through the Business of Sports Network (select his name in the dropdown provided) (http://www.businessofsportsnetwork.com/index.php?option=com_contact&view=contact&id=2&Itemid=29).

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Author:Brown, Maury
Publication:The Biz of Football
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Feb 9, 2010
Words:1002
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