OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network’s yearly averages would be great if they only included January 1. The two-hour premiere of Oprah Winfrey’s new weekly primetime series Oprah’s Next Chapter on Sunday drew 1.1 million viewers and a 1.1 rating among women 25-54. It was the second highest-rated telecast on OWN behind the two-hour premiere of Season 25: Oprah Behind The Scenes on January 1, 2011 (1.2 million, 1.11 women 25-54). While solid for OWN, Winfrey’s new series, which features celebrity profiles shot on location, was nowhere near the big ratings for her syndicated daily talk show, which ended its run with 16.4 million viewers tuning in for the finale in May.
Meanwhile, ESPN yesterday aired the Bowl Championship Series doubleheader — the Rose Bowl and the Fiesta Bowl — for the second year. The Rose Bowl (9.9 overnight rating) posted a 15% year-to-year decline for a second consecutive time. But the Fiesta Bowl, which aired in primetime on the East Coast (9.0), shot up 34% after a 22% drop last year. Overall, ESPN was in positive territory, up 4% for the two games combined vs. 2011. ESPN also was the most-watched network — broadcast or cable — last night.