NCAA football live stream: How to watch the bowl games on ESPN without a TV

Here are some tips for cord cutters who want to watch college football this week.

NCAA football live stream: How to watch the bowl games on ESPN without a TV
[Photo: William Mancebo/Getty Images]

The 2018-2019 college football bowl games are in full swing this holiday week. Over the next 48 hours, 14 teams will face off for seven games around the country, beginning today at 1:30 p.m. ET, when Purdue takes on Auburn at the Nissan Stadium in Nashville. It’s all leading up to the College Football Playoff National Championship game in Santa Clara, California, on January 7.


Here’s the lineup for this weekend. You can find the full schedule here.

  • Friday, December 28. Music City Bowl, Purdue versus Auburn (1:30 p.m. ET); Camping World Bowl, West Virginia versus Syracuse (5:15 p.m. ET); Valero Alamo Bowl, Iowa State versus Washington State (9 p.m. ET).
  • Saturday, December 29. Peach Bowl, Florida versus Michigan (12 p.m. ET); Belk Bowl, South Carolina versus Virginia (12 p.m. ET); Cotton Bowl, Clemson versus Notre Dame (4 p.m. ET); Orange Bowl, Alabama versus Oklahoma (8 p.m. ET).

All of the above games are airing on ESPN (except for the Belk Bowl, which is on ESPN3).

If you’re a cord cutter looking to stream the games live on your computer, phone, or smart TV, you have a few different options. You may be able to watch the action directly on ESPN’s website or via its mobile apps. However, you’ll need pay-TV login credentials to access the live streams there. If you don’t have those credentials, your best bet is to sign up to a TV streaming service that offers ESPN.

I’ve rounded up some of the most popular TV streaming services below. All of these offer ESPN in their channel lineups, but check before you sign up, because ESPN is not offered in all individual packages:

  • DirecTV Now (ESPN is offered in the “Live a Little” package)
  • PlayStation Vue (ESPN is offered in all multi-channel plans)
  • Hulu With Live TV (ESPN is offered, but check your zip code first)
  • Sling TV (ESPN is offered through the Sling Orange plan; Sling also has a Game Finder feature that lets you easily search for games)
  • YouTube TV (ESPN is offered in the core package)

About the author

Christopher Zara is a senior staff news editor for Fast Company and obsessed with media, technology, business, culture, and theater. Before coming to FastCo News, he was a deputy editor at International Business Times, a theater critic for Newsweek, and managing editor of Show Business magazine