NCAA LSU Iowa Basketball

LSU forward Angel Reese (10) reacts during the first quarter of an Elite Eight round college basketball game against Iowa during the NCAA Tournament, Monday, April 1, 2024, in Albany, N.Y. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

Last year’s showdown between LSU and Iowa was the most-watched women’s college basketball game of all time, with an average of 9.9 million viewers on ESPN's platforms.

It isn’t anymore.

When the two teams squared off again in the Elite Eight on Monday night, they set a new record with 12.3 million viewers, according to ESPN.

Those numbers easily topped the average viewership for NBA playoff games last season (5.47 million viewers, according to the league) and all but five college football games last season — Michigan-Alabama (27.76 million), Michigan-Washington (25.05 million), Ohio State-Michigan (19.07 million), Washington-Texas (18.77 million) and Alabama-Georgia (17.52 million).

All other college football games last season fell short of Monday night's LSU-Iowa game, including the Orange Bowl (10.39 million), Colorado-Oregon (10.03 million), the Big Ten championship (10.02 million), the Pac-12 championship (9.25 million), LSU-Florida State (9.17 million) and LSU-Alabama (8.82 million).

The Associated Press announced that ESPN and the NCAA have reached a $920 million, eight year deal to have exclusive rights to 40 championships, including Division I women's basketball.?