The general consensus heading into the 2021 college football season was that fans were looking forward to hopefully enjoying a normal season after COVID wreaked havoc on much of the 2020 campaign.

That anticipation, along with a strong slate of games on the first full Saturday of action, resulted in some impressive TV numbers for ABC’s Saturday tripleheader, which featured 4 of the top 5 teams in the AP preseason poll.

Leading off the slate was No. 2 Oklahoma vs. Tulane, a game that proved to be far closer than expected, and it was followed by No. 1 Alabama vs. No. 14 Miami and then No. 3 Clemson vs. No. 5 Georgia.

In all, the 3 games combined to be ABC’s best viewership numbers for a kickoff Saturday since 2017, with an average of more than 5 million viewers.

Even more impressive were the numbers drawn for the Bulldogs 10-3 win against the Tigers, as nearly 8 million viewers on average were tuned in for the top-5 showdown.

Those numbers, as of now, are on track to to rank the Georgia-Clemson game as the second-most watched kickoff Saturday game on ABC in 15 years.