BYU Football: Cougars have better TV ratings than Big 12

Dec 22, 2020; Boca Raton, Florida, USA; Brigham Young Cougars head coach Kalani Sitake celebrates with defensive back Troy Warner (4) after defeating the UCF Knights at FAU Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

BYU Football has averaged over one million views per football game since 2018.

According to an article released by (UCF SB Nation page), the Big 12 has averaged about 955,000 viewers in games not involving Oklahoma and Texas over the past three seasons. That number was reached by averaging the individual year average as opposed to going back and reviewing every game meaning the number may be off a few thousand.

While the article mentioned above was focusing on how the AAC draws in similar numbers (and even more in 2019), I decided to do my own research and found the following regarding BYU Football and the Big 12.

In 2018, BYU Football averaged 1,095,000 views per game.  In 2019, that number was 1,390,000. In fact against P5 opponents, the Cougars drew in an average of 2.2 million! Finally in 2020 the Cougars averaged 857,000. Again, with some games not registering and a different amount of games per year this number will be off slightly, but the three years average is 1,114,000 views per game.

Yes, you read that correctly the Big 12 average is 955K while BYU’s is 1.11M.

It is worth mentioning also, that many of the games in the Big 12 featured two Big 12 teams in them while many of BYU’s games featured G5 schools. As mentioned above, BYU often gets above 1.5 million when they play another P5 team.

Here are some examples just in 2020

Below are games that were played during the same week. While it is impossible to have a fair equal line based off of the time of day, channel and other matchups, the results are still telling. All of the games below played on either ESPN, ESPN2, Fox of FS1.


BYU vs La Tech – 505K

TCU vs La Tech – 290K


BYU vs Troy – 795K

Kansas vs Baylor – 301K


BYU vs Western Kentucky – 788K

TCU vs Baylor – 353K


BYU vs Boise State – 680K

Texas Tech vs TCU – 559K


The examples could go on and on. The fact that BYU vs WKU is drawing in more viewers than TCU vs Baylor is telling. The BYU game was the 10:15 ET game on ESPN while the Big 12 matchup was on ESPN2 at 3:30ET.

I know that I’ve been hammering the Big 12 and boosting up BYU the past few days, but my purpose isn’t to try to push down the Big 12, but rather to bring up BYU. All of this “Big 12 poaching” or expansion talk around the Big 12 really needs to be going to the Cougars because they have deserved it.

If you missed how BYU compares to the Big 12, read it here.