Friday Night SmackDown & AEW Rampage figures against NCAA basketball

Photo Courtesy: WWE

WWE and AEW programming aired against a multitude of college basketball games this past Friday night.
The March 29 episode of SmackDown averaged 2,201,000 viewers and a 0.60 rating in the 18-49 demographic, both numbers were two percent from the prior week’s episode, per Wrestlenomics and Sports Media Watch.

It was the lowest SmackDown audience of the year but aired against three college games including North Carolina State vs. Marquette (6.5 million viewers) on CBS, Gonzaga vs. Purdue (3.1 million viewers) on TBS and truTV, and a women’s game between North Carolina State and Stanford on ESPN.

It was an episode of SmackDown without The Rock, Roman Reigns, and Cody Rhodes and included a main event between Dakota Kai and Bianca Belair with Jade Cargill making her first appearance since signing with the brand.

In Canada, the show averaged 253,500 viewers and 73,900 in the 25-54 demographic on Sportsnet 360, which ranked third among sports programming for the night behind the Toronto Blue Jays vs. Tampa Bay Rays the Blue Jays Central.

AEW Rampage returned to its normal night and time and attracted 350,000 viewers and 144,000 (0.11) in the core demo on TNT, according to Wrestlenomics.

Last week’s episode aired live on Wednesday immediately following Dynamite and had a larger audience due to its lead-in with 541,000 viewers and 0.18 in the demo.

Two weeks ago, Rampage averaged 327,000 viewers and 0.11 in the demo.

The taped show from Quebec City was headlined by Roderick Strong defeating Matt Menard in a title eliminator match.

Rampage aired against its own slate of basketball programming with the giant game between Duke and Houston averaging 7.3 million viewers and a 1.90 rating in the 18-49 demo on CBS, as well as Creighton vs. Tennessee on TBS and truTV, and a women’s game between Texas and Gonzaga on ESPN.

The basketball games airing both SmackDown and Rampage averaged approximately 10.7 million viewers across the various networks.

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Born on a Friday, John Pollock is a reporter, editor & podcaster at POST Wrestling. He runs and owns POST Wrestling alongside Wai Ting.