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Friday June 28, 2013Gators baseball team proves to be a good TV draw when in Omaha

Updated: 9:32am, June 29

Gators baseball team celebrates

Florida's baseball team celebrates clinching a trip to the 2011 College World Series.

It’s hardly a revelation the Gators draw well on TV.

The Florida football team has been a staple on national television for more than two decades and since Billy Donovan took over the men’s basketball program, the Gators’ status in the offices of TV executives around the country has improved tremendously.

Winning attracts eyeballs that might not normally pay as much attention as those of alumni and die-hard fans.

Still, it’s always interesting to see how the Gators fare in the TV ratings compared to other programs.

Based on figures reported Friday by SportsMediaWatch.com, the Gators baseball program is evidently a good TV draw, too.

The TV ratings for this year’s College World Series featuring UCLA and Mississippi State were down significantly compared to two years ago when the Gators faced SEC rival South Carolina for the title. Game 2 of this year’s CWS drew 1.3 million viewers on ESPN Tuesday night according to Sports Media Watch, 900,000 fewer than the 2.2 million viewers who tuned into Game 2 of the Gators-Gamecocks series in 2011.

Game 2 of the 2012 CWS between Arizona and South Carolina drew about 2.2 million viewers, 37 percent more than this year’s Game 2 and about 100,000 fewer viewers than the Florida-South Carolina Game 2 from 2011.

According to Sports Media Watch, UCLA’s series-clinching win earned the smallest audience for any game of the CWS final since the South Carolina-UCLA Game 1 in 2010 (1.2 million).

Meanwhile, Game 1 between UCLA and Mississippi State on Monday drew 1.6 million viewers, an increase of 7 percent over Game 1 in 2012 between Arizona and South Carolina on ESPN2. However, this year’s Game 1 was 28 percent less than the 2.2 million who watched Game 1 in 2011 when the Gators faced South Carolina.

Based on those figures, the Gators continue to be a good TV draw regardless of the sport.

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