Colorado-CSU Pulls ESPN’s Fifth-Highest CFB Ratings Ever

University of Colorado football coach Deion Sanders

David Zalubowski/AP

The University of Colorado continues to defy the odds with hall-of-fame cornerback Deion Sanders at the helm of its football team.

Ahead of last week’s Rocky Mountain Showdown against Colorado State University, East Coast viewers dreaded the fact that the game was scheduled for 10 p.m., meaning it’d likely go past 1 a.m.

As it turns out, that didn’t really matter.

Despite having a 10:20 p.m. kickoff — and not ending until close to 2:30 a.m. due to multiple overtime periods — the game earned the fifth-highest rating ever for a college football game on ESPN.

According to the network, the game was also its most-watched “late prime time” game on record and the most-streamed regular season game of all time.

The game was also ESPN/ABC’s fourth-best regular season game in six years.

The drama leading up to the game played a big role in those ratings. Days before the teams took the field, CSU coach Jay Norvell voiced his frustration with the hype surrounding Colorado and even took personal shots at Sanders for wearing a hat and sunglasses during interviews. In response, Sanders claimed Norvell made the matchup “personal.”

Coincidentally, Sanders revealed a new line of sunglasses in collaboration with the brand Blenders around the same time. Priced at $67, the sunglasses reportedly generated more than $1.2 million not long after they became available to pre-order.

The financial boon that was Sanders’ hiring is also seen in the Buffaloes’ ticket prices, which have risen more than 300% since the beginning of last season.

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