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How to watch (and listen to) the Cotton Bowl Classic: Wisconsin vs. Western Michigan

Wisconsin’s 2016 season concludes against unbeaten Western Michigan.

NCAA FOOTBALL: DEC 31 Cotton Bowl - Wisconsin Media Day Photo by Matthew Pearce/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The last time the Wisconsin Badgers football team played in AT&T Stadium, they suffered a 35-17 loss to Alabama in the 2015 season opener and Paul Chryst’s first game as head coach at UW. In the 2016 season finale this Monday, they return to that building looking to cap their impressive season with a third consecutive bowl win. This time, they’ll face the Western Michigan Broncos in the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic.

While the Broncos do not boast the pedigree of Alabama, they do share a common, attainable goal: finish the 2016 season undefeated. Western Michigan won the Mid-American Conference (MAC) with a 13-0 record and hasn’t lost since Nov. 11, 2015 (15 straight wins). The Broncos will look to do so on the back of a potent offense that puts up nearly 500 yards and 44 points per game. Perhaps even more impressively, the Broncos have only turned the ball over seven times for an NCAA-best +19 turnover margin.

While Wisconsin’s loss in the Big Ten championship dashed any hopes of a playoff berth, the Cotton Bowl does hold importance for the program as a whole. First, it’s the defense’s chance to redeem itself after being gashed for 384 passing yards by Penn State in the Big Ten championship. The unit had previously not allowed an opponent to score 30-plus points; Penn State put up 38. Secondly, Wisconsin has the opportunity to win it’s third straight bowl game, which has only been accomplished once in school history (1998-2000). Lastly, a Badgers win would give the program its fourth 11-win season in seven years; they had just two 11-plus-win seasons prior to that stretch.

Neither school has played in any of the 80 previous Cotton Bowls, but they have played each other three times overall. Each game was played in Madison, and Wisconsin holds a 3-1 series lead. The most recent matchup came in the 2000 season, when Wisconsin won 19-7.

When and where is the game?

Action kicks off at Noon CT from AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

How can I watch?

ESPN will broadcast the game with Bob Wischusen handling play-by-play, Brock Huard bringing analysis and Allison Williams working from the sidelines.

How can I stream the game online?

Via or the WatchESPN mobile app on iOS or Android.

How can I listen to it on the radio?

ESPN Radio is broadcasting the game nationally. Brad Sham, Rod Gilmore and Quint Kessenich will bring the action there. You’ll also hear the game on the Badgers Sports Network, where you’ll the usual of team of Matt Lepay, Mike Lucas, Mark Tauscher and Patrick Herb. On satellite radio, you’ll find the broadcast on Sirius 80 / XM 80. Otherwise, head to to find it. You can also listen on iHeartRadio (iOS/Android/online) by searching WIBA.

Want more in-depth Cotton Bowl coverage?

B5Q has you covered. Take a look (here) and follow along on Twitter (@B5Q) to find analysis, interviews and everything else you need to prepare for the final Wisconsin football game of the 2016 season.

What can I expect to see?

Wisconsin (10-3; Depth Chart) -8.5 (more bowl odds)

Last game: 38-31 loss vs. Penn State in Big Ten championship (Dec. 3, 2016)

Polls: No. 8 in College Football Playoff rankings, AP Top 25 and Amway Coaches Poll

Head coach: Paul Chryst, second season at Wisconsin (20-6)

Wisconsin on Offense

Wisconsin Offensive Rankings Per Game B1G NCAA
Wisconsin Offensive Rankings Per Game B1G NCAA
Points 28.7 5th 67th
Offensive yards 383.7 8th 88th
Rushing yards 204.5 3rd 40th
Passing yards 179.2 9th 104th

Wisconsin on Defense

Wisconsin Defensive Rankings Per Game B1G NCAA
Wisconsin Defensive Rankings Per Game B1G NCAA
Points Allowed 15.5 t-2nd 4th
Yards Allowed 303 3rd 7th
Rush Yds Allowed 96.9 1st 2nd
Pass Yds Allowed 206.1 7th 35th

Western Michigan (13-0; Depth Chart on page 22)

Last game: 29-23 win vs. Ohio in MAC championship (Dec. 3, 2016)

Polls: No. 15 in College Football Playoff rankings, No. 12 in AP Top 25, No. 14 in Amway Coaches Poll

Head coach: P.J. Fleck, fourth season at Western Michigan (30-21)

Western Michigan on Offense

Western Michigan Offensive Rankings Per Game MAC NCAA
Western Michigan Offensive Rankings Per Game MAC NCAA
Points 43.5 1st 6th
Offensive yards 496.7 2nd 14th
Rushing yards 237 2nd 19th
Passing yards 259.7 4th 39th

Western Michigan on Defense

Western Michigan Defensive Rankings Per Game MAC NCAA
Western Michigan Defensive Rankings Per Game MAC NCAA
Points Allowed 19.5 1st 14th
Yards Allowed 353 1st 27th
Rush Yds Allowed 151.2 4th 47th
Pass Yds Allowed 201.8 3rd 30th