TV Ratings: CBS Starts 2009 on Top

Fast National ratings for Thursday, Jan. 1, 2009

A low-wattage matchup in the first of FOX's Bowl Championship Series telecasts opened the door for CBS to get a New Year's Day ratings victory.

CBS averaged a 4.8 rating/8 share to take Thursday's top spot. NBC came in second at 4.6/8, edging FOX's 4.2/7. ABC drew a 4.1/7 for fourth (numbers for FOX and ABC will change some, as both networks had aired live college football). The CW came in at 1.1/2.

FOX did lead among adults 18-49, although its 2.4 rating was only about half of what its New Year's Day bowl broadcast earned last year. CBS took second in the demographic with a 2.2, followed closely by ABC, 2.1, and NBC, 2.0. The CW drew a 0.7.

The conclusion of the Rose Bowl game and "America's Funniest Home Videos" averaged 6.7/11 for ABC at 8 p.m. "Deal or No Deal," 5.1/8, took second for NBC. Repeats of "The Big Bang Theory" and "How I Met Your Mother" combined for a 4.0/6 on CBS. FOX's coverage of the Orange Bowl (pre-game and game) was fourth, while a "Smallville" repeat on The CW earned a 1.3/2.

NBC took the lead at 9 p.m. as a second hour of "Deal or No Deal" snagged a 6.0/10. A "CSI" rerun, 5.8/9, finished second for CBS, ahead of the Orange Bowl, 5.2/8, on FOX. ABC got a 2.6/4 from a "Grey's Anatomy" rerun. The CW went with a "Supernatural" repeat.

At 10 p.m., an "Eleventh Hour" rerun scored a 4.7/8 for CBS. "Private Practice" delivered a 2.8/5 for ABC, topping the 2.6/4 for a pair of "Office" reruns on NBC. Numbers for FOX weren't available.

Ratings information is taken from fast national data, which includes live and same-day DVR viewing. All numbers are preliminary and subject to change, especially in the case of live telecasts.

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