Known for its college football fanatics, Oklahoma City also is a hotbed for Olympic TV viewers. Through the first six nights, KFOR-4's 23.1 prime-time rating ranked seventh nationally among NBC's metered affiliates.
Interest peaked Tuesday night with a 27.5 rating as swimmer Michael Phelps set the record for Olympic gold medals. KFOR has ranked in the top 10 on four of the six nights, missing out on Friday night's opening ceremonies and Sunday night.
KFOR also ranked in the top 10 for the 2004 Athens Games, in which most of NBC's coverage was taped.
Mayor Mick Cornett, a former KOCO-5 sports director, attributed the high national ranking to several factors, including the area's rich gymnastics heritage. Shannon Miller, a former Edmond resident, won a total of seven medals in gymnastics in the 1992 and 1996 games.
"Our community is very patriotic,” Cornett said. "When you put Team USA's name on a product, Oklahomans are more likely to watch and be part of it. I think secondly we're a hotbed for gymnastics and that has been a lot of the coverage the first few nights.