Sports has managed to buck the downward ratings trends in television -- Olympics included -- making 2008 potentially the strongest year ever for sports television. As a result, networks that
air athletic contests can build and package audiences that are relatively immune to the havoc caused by digital video recorders.
This year, the Super Bowl and the Olympics shattered viewership records. Other ratings gainers include the National Football Conference playoffs, the NCAA Tournament final, the NBA finals, the Stanley Cup finals, golf's U.S. Open, the Wimbledon finals and the MLB All-Star Game.