Several sports outlets are reporting that advertisers may be getting some $20 million in makegoods from ESPN because ratings for the College Football Playoff semifinal games fell below expectations.
The games aired on New Year’s Eve.
Sports Illustrated reported overall viewership covering both semifinals was down more than 12 million, compared to last year. The first game, Clemson vs. Oklahoma, dropped 45% and the second game, Alabama vs. Michigan, fell 34%.
Lower ratings were expected because last year’s games were played on New Year’s day, but the makegood suggests even ESPN was surprise by the numbers.
A spokesman for CFP told FoxSports.com one year doesn’t make a trend and no changes in the 12-year contract have been discussed.