The title is an exaggeration, to be sure. There were plenty of people watching the final round of the Masters and checking out Bubba Watson holding off Louis Oosthuizen in a playoff, but it just wasn't as many as before. Emily Kay of SB Nation files this report.
With Woods completely out of contention during Sunday’s final round and on the way to his worst finish at Augusta National since turning pro, CBS viewership tanked to its lowest preliminary TV ratings since 2004, according to Bloomberg.
An average of 8.1 percent of households in the top 56 U.S. TV markets tuned in to watch Bubba Watson outlast Louis Oosthuizen in a dramatic, sudden-death playoff, CBS spokesperson Jerry Caraccioli told Bloomberg. That’s a 22 percent drop from the 10.4 ratings of a year ago, when Woods put on a late charge but fell short of 2011 Masters winner Charl Schwartzel.
It shouldn't be too much of a shock to see this dramatic decline. The golfing world has tied itself in greatly to the Tiger Woods phenomenon, and now that he seems to be in a bit of a rut, it appears the casual viewer is turning their interest elsewhere. It could be an issue that repeats itself many times in the near future, particularly if Woods keeps on making no-shows at big majors on Sunday.
It also goes to show that when Tiger and Phil Mickelson (who triple bogeyed early on and torpedoed his chances) are not making a weekend charge at Augusta, the ratings simply don't hold up.