Western Michigan Broncos vs. Wisconsin Badgers Odds and Trends Cotton Bowl

No.8 Wisconsin held the sixth-ranked scoring offense to almost 30 points below its season average and utilized a balanced offensive attack to win the 81st Cotton Bowl with a 24-16 victory over Western Michigan.

Even after Fumagalli's touchdown grab off the Edwards interception, Western Michigan came right back with a grinding 16-play touchdown drive, which ended with Davis hauling in Terrell's fourth-down desperation heave in the back end zone.

With 13:58 left in the fourth quarter and the Broncos starting from their own three yard line, Terrell's pass from his own end zone was intercepted by T.J. Edwards, putting the Badgers in the red zone with a seven point lead.

Terrell's 10-yard pass to wide receiver Corey Davis converted a fourth-and-5 from the UW 38-yard line, and Terrell eventually ran in a 2-yard touchdown on third-and-goal to make the score 14-7 late in the second quarter. Other home games include Northwestern, Iowa and MI. Unfortunately it proved to be not quite enough as Wisconsin downed the Broncos 24-16 and ended their bid at a flawless 14-0 season. Still, it's doubtful Western Michigan will be able to repeat the success it enjoyed in 2016.

These teams played three common opponents this season - Akron, Illinois and Northwestern - and Western Michigan measured up very well.

GLENDALE AZ- DECEMBER 31 Clelin Ferrell #99 of the Clemson Tigers celebrates with teammate Carlos Watkins #94 during the first half of the 2016 Play Station Fiesta Bowl against the Ohio State Buckeyes at University of Phoenix Stadium
Western Michigan Broncos vs. Wisconsin Badgers Odds and Trends Cotton Bowl

"(Head coach) P.J. Fleck and the "Row the Boat" and the fact that we're undefeated has really united the whole town and the college and it's been a wonderful year", WMU senior Shannon Merchant said.

The Badgers found little resistance on their first possession, driving 75 yards in 11 plays. The Badgers' blocking was sensational all game long. Corey Clement and Dare Ogunbowale each scored on touchdown runs in the opening frame. The offensive play-calling was strong, though Wisconsin could have done more to open up the inside run in the second and third quarters.

Clement, Wisconsin's star back, finished with 71 yards rushing.

Wisconsin capitalized on the interception, with Troy Fumagalli catching an eight-yard pass from Alex Hornibrook in the back of the end zone.

Wisconsin worked its way into WMU territory on the ensuing drive, but was held to a field goal, making it 17-7 at halftime.

  • Jacqueline Ellis