By Staff -- Broadcasting & Cable, 4/10/2005 8:00:00 PM
MORE MARCH SADNESS
The second week of March Madness, the week ended March 27, caused some problems for syndicated shows, with about 25 hours of programming preempted for basketball on CBS affiliates.
The good news: That was about 11 hours fewer than the first week of the NCAA men's basketball tournament. Regaining almost a dozen hours, combined with fresh episodes from some strips, helped several shows recoup some of their basketball ratings losses.
The biggest improvement was a 33% jump by the just renewed NBC reality show Starting Over, which averaged a 1.2 in households, according to Nielsen.
Also on the rebound were The Oprah Winfrey Show (with a 6.6), Dr. Phil (5.3), Jerry Springer (2.4) and The Ellen DeGeneres Show (2.3).
Rookie The Insider was up 9%, to a 2.5 rating, despite losing its primary runs to basketball in more than a dozen markets (including four of the top five) on March 24-25. Insider's seasoned cousin, Entertainment Tonight, lost primary telecasts to basketball in 24 metered markets for two days. But it still was the top magazine show with a 4.5, up 2% in households. Inside Edition was down 3% to a 3.2; Access Hollywood was unchanged at 2.5; Extra was down 4% to a 2.2.
Both the two top shows were off: Jeopardy! 4%, to a 7.3, and Wheel of Fortune 3%, to an 8.7—still a rating that would have its rivals turning cartwheels.
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