TV ratings: Bombers, Riders yield largest CFL Finals number in recent years

Photo courtesy: Matt Smith

The Farmers’ Almanac was right: Winnipeg and Saskatchewan produced a high yield.

It was the first West Final between the prairie rivals since 1972 and the Bombers scored a 20-13 win against the Riders in a game which came down to the final play — drama helps boost audiences. Forget sports: it was the highest rated English language program on television Sunday, November 17. CTV national news came in at 1,081,900.

The top three sports ratings of the day belonged to the CFL, West Final, East Final and the CFL on TSN panel show in between each game rated one, two and three. Prior to kick-off for the doubleheader, 167,000 tuned in for the pre-game coverage. 109,000 and 77,000 were the respective RDS totals.

In the important 25-54 age range, 562,600 were watching the matchup at Mosaic Stadium, more than doubling any other sporting event. The 1 p.m. easter time slate of NFL games checked in 610,900 across CTV stations country-wide, which ranked fourth — 248,500 in the 25-54 demo. The next slot was the Sunday Night NFL tilt on TSN between the Chicago Bears and Los Angeles Rams, drawing 546,400.

For the second straight week the CFL recorded a win. Winnipeg and Calgary in the West Semi-Final drew more eye balls in Canada than the MLS Cup played at 3 p.m. ET on Sunday. Year-over-year the Finals ratings jumped on average by nearly 300,000 viewers or almost 30 percent.

Division Finals Sunday TV ratings 2019:

Edmonton at Hamilton — 898,400
Winnipeg at Saskatchewan — 1,631,900

Average: 1,265,150


Hamilton at Ottawa — 729,000
Winnipeg at Calgary — 1,222,030

Average: 974,650


Saskatchewan at Toronto — 1,406,000
Edmonton at Calgary — 1,337,000

Average: 1,371,500


Edmonton at Ottawa — 1,178,100
B.C. at Calgary– 1,049,000

Average: 1,113,550

Justin Dunk is a football insider, sports reporter and anchor.