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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Thurs., Sept. 3) -- last Cowboys pretend game bests TCU's for real opener

@unclebarkycom on Twitter
The Dallas Cowboys’ first pre-season win in over two years, by 21-14 over the Houston Texans, ended up being the least-watched of the four while still easily leading all programming Thursday.

Cowboys-Texans, which ended at 10:06 p.m. on CBS11, drew 425,414 D-FW viewers and 179,767 in the advertiser-coveted 18-to-49-year-old demographic. The total viewership fell a bit below Saturday’s 439,362 for the so-called “dress rehearsal” game. But the 18-to-49-year-old portion of the audience ticked up from the pre-season low of 151,387 for the dress rehearsal.

The Cowboys hit their pre-season highs for the Aug. 23rd Game 2 loss at San Francisco, which averaged 634,634 total viewers and 271,277 in the 18-to-49 age range.

Meanwhile on ESPN, No. 2-ranked TCU opened the 2015 season with a tough 23-17 road win at Minnesota. Starting at 8:15 p.m. and ending at 11:47 p.m. on ESPN, the game averaged 209,220 total viewers and 100,922 within the 18-to-49 motherlode.

The total audience for TCU-Minnesota steadily dwindled from 10:45 p.m. on, hitting a game low of 125,532 viewers for the last full 15-minute segment (11:30 to 11:45 p.m.). But the 18-to-49-year-old crowd hung in there, with more viewers watching from 11:30 to 11:45 p.m. (91,460) than from 11 to 11:15 p.m. (88,306).

Regular CBS programming was shifted over to CBS11’s sister station, TXA21, where 104,610 total viewers still managed to find the 8 p.m. episode of Big Brother. But Under the Dome, which is being canceled after these final episodes play out, hit close to rock bottom at 9 p.m. with just 27,896 viewers and 12,615 in the 18-to-49 realm compared to Big Brother’s 66,230.

Here are Thursday’s local news derby results.

Fox4 swept a downsized three-way competition at 10 p.m. with wins in both total viewers and 25-to-54-year-olds (main advertiser target audience for news programming).

Fox4 also won a pair of close races at 6 a.m. while TEGNA8 ran the table at 6 p.m. The 5 p.m. firsts went to NBC5 in total viewers and TEGNA8 among 25-to-54-year-olds.

CBS11’s one-hour Deep Blue Cowboys special from 5 to 6 p.m. ran a distant fourth in both ratings measurements. The station’s 6 p.m. newscast also was preempted by a Cowboys pre-game show that likewise trailed competing Fox4, NBC5 and TEGNA8 in the 6 to 6:30 p.m. portion. From 6:30 to 7 p.m., Countdown to Kickoff kicked in and won in total viewers while outdrawing everything except TEGNA8’s Entertainment Tonight in the 25-to-54 age range.

Email comments or questions to: unclebarky@verizon.net