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Who Is Still Watching The Ultimate Fighter?

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The Ultimate Fighter Season 9 is near or surpassed the halfway mark as episode nine will air on Spike TV tonight at 10pm. I'll admit that I've pretty much watched every episode of TUF up until this season. I'm at the point now where I just DVR the show and fast forward to the fights now for the most part. It's not because I'm not interested in the show anymore, it's just easier for me and my time schedule. I've read countless blogs and forums about how people are tired of the format, and the foolishness that show has produced over the last couple of seasons. I only have anecdotal evidence of fans saying they would not watch the show anymore etc etc.

However, to my surprise this season of TUF has an average viewing audience of 1.23 million through 8 episodes.

So on average 1.23 million people still watch the Ultimate Fighter in its 9th season? I would like to know who is still watching TUF. Do some hardcore fans still watch the show? Is the viewing audience made up of mostly casual fans nowadays or is it a mixture of both? Has the advent of DVR influenced the numbers somewhat? All valid questions, and more importantly does the 1.23 million average have a noticeable affect on PPV numbers? Give me your thoughts.