Super Bowl Highest-Rated Ever in Metered Markets

Fares better in 56 metered markets than previously top-rated 2011 game

The Super Bowl was the highest-rated ever in metered markets, scoring an overnight rating/share of 48.1/71, CBS announced Monday.

The markets refer to 56 major cities. Ratings were highest, unsurprisingly, in Baltimore, home to the winning Ravens, who beat the San Francisco 49ers 34-31. They were second-highest in New Orleans, which hosted the game.

San Francisco didn't crack the top 10 in terms of cities where the game was highest rated.

The ratings exclude the period from 8:45-9:15 ET, when a power outage delayed the game.

The metered market ratings topped those of the previous metered-markets leader, the Pittsburgh Steelers-Green Bay Packers game that scored a 47.9/71 in 2011.

It remains to be seen whether Sunday's game will prove to be the most-watched television show in U.S. history. The Super Bowl claimed that honor in 2010, and beat its own record in 2011 and again last year.

In another non-surprise, the game's rating/share peaked at 52.9/75 from 10:30 to 10:45 p.m., as the 49ers tried to finish a major rally after the outage by coming back to beat the Ravens.

Here are the 10 metered markets with the highest ratings for the game:

1.  Baltimore                                   59.6/83

2.  New Orleans                              57.1/77

3.  Washington, DC                        56.9/80

4.  Norfolk                                      55.8/76

5.  Dayton                                       54.6/72

 6.   Columbus, OH                           54.3/73

 7.   Indianapolis                               54.2/76

 8.   Richmond-Petersburg                53.7/74

 9.   Milwaukee                                 53.4/73

10.  Jacksonville                               53.3/70    

In preliminary fast national ratings — which are subject to significant revision due to the nature of live sports, and the delay created by the power outage — the Super Bowl posted a 36.1 rating/70 share in the advertiser-coveted 18-49 demographic and amassed 98.6 million total viewers. Combined with post-game coverage, which drew a 29.7/62 and 77 million total viewers, CBS averaged a 35.3/69 and 95.9 million total viewers, according to the preliminary numbers.

The rest of the networks ran repeats throughout the night.