- The Washington Times - Tuesday, February 5, 2002

NEW YORK (AP) Apparently, a tight game, thrilling finish and major upset don't guarantee a Super Bowl ratings bonanza. Not that Fox is complaining.
The network's telecast of the New England Patriots' 20-17 victory over the St. Louis Rams on Sunday night registered exactly the same numbers as last year's game: a 40.4 national rating and 61 share.
That means an average of 40.4 percent of the country's TV homes were watching at any given moment, and 61 percent of in-use televisions were tuned to the game.
Those figures match those for the 2001 game, when the Baltimore Ravens routed the New York Giants 34-7 on CBS.
An estimated 131.7 million people (about 500,000 more than last year) watched at least part of Sunday night's game, the fifth-highest total for a program sports or otherwise in television history. The top 10 shows on that list are all Super Bowls.
In the last 30 years, only the 1999 (40.2 on Fox) and 1992 (40.3 on CBS) Super Bowls drew lower ratings, but the proliferation of cable and the Internet have dramatically stratified the TV audience.
The 2000 Super Bowl drew a 43.2 rating on ABC.

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