With ratings still low, ABC/ESPN shuffle XFL 3.0 games to bigger platforms
The third iteration of the XFL isn’t drawing viewers the way the first two did. And so, in an effort to boost ratings, three upcoming games have been moved to higher-profile networks.
On Tuesday, the XFL and ESPN announced that the Thursday, March 16 game between Houston and Seattle has been moved from FX to ESPN. The game is scheduled to begin at 10:30 p.m. ET. Also, the Sunday, March 25 game between Seattle and Orlando has been shifted from ESPN to ABC. And the Monday, March 27 game between Houston and D.C. has migrated from FX to ESPN2.
The changes came after a third disappointing week for the XFL. Via SportsMediaWatch.com, the Week Three games averaged 571,000 viewers on FX and ESPN2. That’s a 13-percent drop from the Week Two games on FX, ESPN, and ESPN2.
The Sunday game between St. Louis and D.C. led the way for the weekend, with 665,000 average viewers on FX.
The numbers aren’t horrible, when viewed in isolation. However, XFL 3.0 is down sharply from XFL 2.0. It will be interesting to see whether that improves, and whether the second year of USFL 2.0 matches what it did last year.