By Tim Cuprisin Media Columnist Published Oct 06, 2009 at 4:27 PM

The bulk of the country watched "Monday Night Football" on ESPN -- rather than their local ABC affiliate as Milwaukee did -- and Brett Favre's victory over his old team pulled in the largest cable television audience ever recorded.

Nielsen Media Research numbers show an estimated 21.8 million viewers tuned in for ESPN's airing of the game, which easily beat all the network TV offerings and broke the past cable viewing record, an ESPN "Monday Night Football" game last season.

You can find Milwaukee ratings in today's OnMedia column.

Tim Cuprisin Media Columnist

Tim Cuprisin is the media columnist for He's been a journalist for 30 years, starting in 1979 as a police reporter at the old City News Bureau of Chicago, a legendary wire service that's the reputed source of the journalistic maxim "if your mother says she loves you, check it out." He spent a couple years in the mean streets of his native Chicago, and then moved on to the Green Bay Press-Gazette and USA Today, before coming to the Milwaukee Journal in 1986.

A general assignment reporter, Cuprisin traveled Eastern Europe on several projects, starting with a look at Poland after five years of martial law, and a tour of six countries in the region after the Berlin Wall opened and Communism fell. He spent six weeks traversing the lands of the former Yugoslavia in 1994, linking Milwaukee Serbs, Croats and Bosnians with their war-torn homeland.

In the fall of 1994, a lifetime of serious television viewing earned him a daily column in the Milwaukee Journal (and, later the Journal Sentinel) focusing on TV and radio. For 15 years, he has chronicled the changes rocking broadcasting, both nationally and in Milwaukee, an effort he continues at

When he's not watching TV, Cuprisin enjoys tending to his vegetable garden in the backyard of his home in Whitefish Bay, cooking and traveling.