The Heart of Dallas Bowl between Utah and West Virginia does not have the makings of a great game. The Utes are 6-6 and lost six of their past eight; the Mountaineers are 7-5 and lost three of their past five.

You should watch it anyway.

It will be played in the middle of the day on a Tuesday, the day after Christmas — not exactly prime TV real estate. (Kickoff is 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday on ESPN.)

You should watch it anyway.

USA Today ranks the Utah-West Virginia 29th most-watchable this season. According to College Football News, it’s 23rd. Sports Illustrated has it 17th (although it didn’t include the semifinals and the championship game in its rankings).

You should watch it anyway.

Yes, a lot of the 92,000 seats in Cotton Bowl Stadium will be empty. West Virginia’s athletic director told the Charleston Gazette-Mail the Mountaineers will not sell their allotment of 6,176 tickets. And nobody expects a lot of Utah fans to be there, either.

That’s not surprising, given the mediocre records; that it’s more than 1,200 miles from both Salt Lake City and Morgantown; and Dallas isn’t exactly a dream vacation spot in December — particularly when, if you’re traveling, you’ll have to miss Christmas at home to be there.

But, hey, if I lived in the Dallas area, I’d buy a ticket. And fans here in Utah don’t have a lot of excuses for not watching.

The Heart of Dallas Bowl won’t be hard to find. It’s on ESPN, so you can watch it on cable or satellite or stream it on your mobile device.

What else are you going to watch? “General Hospital”? “Young and the Restless”? “Rachel Ray”? “Maury”? The Liverpool-Swansea EPL match? (Not that there’s anything wrong with Premier League soccer.)

If you have to work the day after Christmas, well, that sucks for you. But you could surreptitiously stream the game on your phone on the ESPN app. Or you could stay off social media, record the game and watch it later. It’s not like the winner of the Heart of Dallas Bowl is going to be huge, unavoidable news.

It’s easy to say Utah vs. West Virginia is not a big deal, but bowls are important to ESPN. It’s prominent programming for two-plus weeks every year, with another week devoted to coverage of the national championship game.

Which is why 35 of the 40 postseason games are on ESPN, ESPN2 or sister network ABC. Which is why ESPN helps prop up the bowl system by owning of them.

Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

No, the Heart of Dallas bowl isn’t ESPN’s top priority. But the production team and the on-air talent — play-by-play announcer Roy Philpott; analyst Rene Ingoglia; and sideline reporter Kris Budden — will take the game seriously. They’ll provide the same technical expertise that’s become a trademark.

It’s easy to bag on ESPN, but the fact is that nobody does a better job telecasting live sports.

This is a chance for Utah to get a win over a team from another Power Five conference. It’s a chance for the Utes to finish the season with a winning record.

You don’t even have to be a Ute fan. You could be a Utah State or BYU fan, rooting for the Utes to lose. You could even be a BYU fan rooting for West Viriginia to lose because the Mountaineers got into the Big 12 and the Cougars didn’t.

You scoff, but I hear from people who think like that.

No, bowls aren’t what they used to be. There are too many of them. And no bowl other than the two playoff semifinals actually means anything.

But you should watch the Heart of Dallas Bowl anyway.