Great news for fans of NCAA tournament basketball -- the famed "March Madness". With CBS and Turner combining for coverage this year, every game will be shown in its entirety, not relegated to regional coverage as has been the case on CBS over the past few years, according to USA Today:â†µâ†µ
"One reason to stagger them is to allow viewers to see more games," CBS executive vice president Mike Aresco says. "The other is to create non-stop basketball from noon ET to midnight."â†µâ†µâ†µ
â†µIn CBS' former regionalized coverage, tip-offs were tightly bunched to let it shift audiences between a succession of game finishes. Now with each tournament game getting full coverage on CBS or Turner's TBS, TNT or truTV cable channels, tip-offs will be spaced further apart.â†µ
â†µIt also will extend coverage. On the tournament's first Sunday, for example, NCAA games used to end in time for CBS to air 60 Minutes and its prime-time lineup on TV's most-watched night. This year, NCAA action that Sunday night will continue until about midnight ET on Turner.
All told, there are 67 tournament games. This year, fewer than half will be on CBS, with the rest sent to Turner's cable networks. According to the USA Today article, this shouldn't make a huge difference in coverage, as cable is now in many more homes:â†µâ†µ
Broadcast networks such as CBS reach about 116 million households, while TBS and TNT are in about 101 million and truTV is in about 92 million.