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UCF Win Over UConn Posts Strong TV Numbers on ESPNU

Most-watched ESPNU Thursday night season opener in 5 years.

Otis Anderson scoring TD vs UConn in 2017. (Photo: Derek Warden)
Otis Anderson scoring TD vs UConn in 2017. (Photo: Derek Warden)

The Knights' 56-17 win over UConn on Thursday night was the most-watched UCF sporting event ever telecast on ESPNU.

UCF's win at UConn, which kicked off at 7pm on ESPNU, garnered 444,000 viewers (0.15 Rating) according to ShowBuzzDaily.com.

It surpasses the previous most-watched UCF telecast on ESPNU, which was the Knights' loss at South Carolina on September 26, 2015 which had 380,000 viewers.

UCF at UConn had more viewers than Fox Sports 1's telecast of Oklahoma State hosting Missouri State which had 337,000 viewers. ESPN's telecast of Northwestern at Purdue, which had over 1.7 million viewers on ESPN, was the second highest-rated cable program on Thursday.

UCF-UConn was the 54th-rated cable program on Thursday night and was the number one overall sports program in the Orlando market. It is the most-watched ESPNU Thursday night season opener in 5 years. It is also the highest-rated and most-watched American Athletic Conference game that has aired on ESPNU in the five years of league's existence. It surpasses the UConn at #18 East Carolina game from October 23, 2014. Last year the most-watched AAC game on ESPNU was Navy at Memphis which had 295,000 viewers.

The game was even with last year's ESPNU first telecast of the college football season which was a Friday night game between Navy and Florida Atlantic - Lane Kiffin's first game as Owls' Head Coach. ESPNU did not have a Thursday night game last year as it did a megacast for Ohio State at Indiana.

Here is a breakdown of the most watched American Conference Games on ESPNU:


2018 #21 UCF at UConn - 444,000 (8/30)

2014 UConn at #18 East Carolina - 395,000 (10/23)

2015 #19 Houston at UConn - 373,000 (11/21)

2013 Houston at #20 Louisville 348,000 (11/16)


The top four most-watched AAC games on ESPNU all involved rank teams. Interestingly 3 of the 4 games happen to involve UConn.

The 21st ranked Knights will host South Carolina State at 6pm next Saturday on ESPN3.