Only 18.7 million people tuned in to watch Monday's CFP National Championship Game between Alabama and Ohio State. That's down from 25.5 million last season and is the lowest-rated title game since the invention of the BCS. It's also slightly fewer than the ratings of each semifinal game leading into the championship matchup.
Now, it was still by far the most-watched show on Monday night and certainly out-rates anything else on cable, but relatively speaking, 18.7 million is a disaster. It turns out all the people saying they were sick of seeing the same teams playing every year really did tune this one out.
I just don't really know what college football is supposed to do to fix that — some people would tell you expand the Playoff to eight teams, but you would still end up with the same teams in the title game. And it's probably going to get worse before it gets better.
But when a game featuring two of the premier brands in college football draws this poorly, it's hard to argue there isn't a perception problem nationally in terms of the competitive balance of the sport. But if I was to put money on it, I'd guess Alabama and either Clemson or Ohio State will be right back here next year. We'll see if any more people tune in.