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Duke vs. Butler Best NCAA Championship Ratings Since 1999

Duke Butler

04/ 6/10 03:31 PM ET   AP

NEW YORK — The NCAA championship game earned its highest television rating since 2005.

Duke's 61-59 win over Butler on Monday night on CBS earned a 14.2 fast national rating and 23 share. That's up 31 percent from the 10.8/18 for North Carolina's blowout against Michigan State last year.

It's the best rating since a 15.0/23 for North Carolina-Illinois in 2005. More than 48 million viewers watched at least some of the game, the most since 50 million tuned in for Arizona-Kentucky in 1997 when the population was smaller.

The entire tournament averaged a 6.0 rating, up 5 percent from last season.

Ratings represent the percentage of all households with televisions. Shares represent the percentage of all homes with TVs in use at the time.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

NEW YORK (AP) – The NCAA championship game matched its highest preliminary television rating since 1999.

Duke's 61-59 win over Butler on Monday night on CBS earned a 16.0 overnight rating and 25 share. That's up 34 percent from the 11.9/19 for North Carolina's blowout against Michigan State last year.

It tied the 16.0/23 for North Carolina-Illinois in 2005 as the best since a 16.9/25 in 1999 for Connecticut-Duke.

The entire tournament averaged a 6.6 overnight rating, up 5 percent from last season.

Ratings represent the percentage of all households with televisions tuned into a program. Shares represent the percentage of all homes with TVs in use at the time. Overnight ratings measure the nation's largest markets.

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Filed by Danny Shea  |