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Puppy Bowl XII 2016: Date, Starting Lineup, TV Schedule and More

Joe Pantorno@@JoePantornoFeatured ColumnistFebruary 2, 2016

IMAGE DISTRIBUTED FOR DISCOVERY COMMUNICATIONS -  Atmosphere at the Puppy Bowl X at the Discovery Times Square Experience in New York on Tuesday Jan. 28, 2014. (Mark Von Holden/AP Images for Discovery Communications)
Mark Von Holden/Associated Press

Super Bowl Sunday is providing more than the NFL's biggest game of the year. On Sunday, Puppy Bowl XII will provide some pre-Super Bowl 50 fun for those who like their sports to come in the little fur-ball variety. 

Here's everything you need to know about the big game for your four-legged friends.

Date: Sunday, Feb. 7

Time (ET): 3 p.m.

Channel: Animal Planet (Check local listings)

With 49 puppies competing in this year's Puppy Bowl, here are the starting lineups for the game, via AnimalPlanet.com:

Puppy Bowl XII Starting Lineup
NameBreedAgeTeam (If Available)
AtticusHusky/Labrador12 weeksN/A
BellaRat Terrier20 weeksRuff
BijouxGreat Dane12 weeksFluff
BorisHavanese16 weeksN/A
BrooklynGerman Shepherd13 weeksN/A
ButtonsShih Tzu13 weeksFluff
CarolinaAmerican Staffordshire17 weeksN/A
CharlieFeist/Whippet16 weeksFluff
ChiChiChihuahua15 weeksN/A
CloverBasset Hound18 weeksN/A
CooperGreat Pyrenees/Collie15 weeksFluff
CountessEnglish Bulldog19 weeksFluff
DarbyJack Russell Terrier15 weeksRuff
DillyTerrier Poodle16 weeksRuff
GordonEnglish Setter18 weeksFluff
GryffinOld English Sheepdog15 weeksFluff
HaileyWire Haired Terrier13 weeksRuff
HankYellow Labrador/Husky12 weeksN/A
HarperPit Bull13 weeksRuff
JimmySpaniel mix12 weeksN/A
KevinSchnauzer13 weeksFluff
LeahRottweiler15 weeksRuff
MagicChihuahua16 weeksFluff
MarleyLabrador Retriever14 weeksRuff
Miss SassyBoston Terrier12 weeksFluff
MoosePoodle14 weeksN/A
OtisBulldog17 weeksN/A
PiperBorder Terrier19 weeksRuff
PoseyShih Tzu14 weeksFluff
Puddin PopBulldog14 weeksN/A
RangerSpringer Spaniel16 weeksN/A
RaphaelPit Bull13 weeksRuff
RoxyFrench Bulldog mix15 weeksN/A
RugbyTerrier19 weeksN/A
SailorAustralian Cattle Dog12 weeksFluff
SamoaHusky/Shepherd12 weeksFluff
ScoutAustralian Shepherd18 weeksN/A
ShylahWired Haired Terrier18 weeksFluff
SplashGreat Pyrenees14 weeksFluff
StarChow Chow/Labrador20 weeksN/A
StellaDachshund/Chihuahua15 weeksRuff
TimonTerrier13 weeksRuff
TobyMaltese18 weeksRuff
TidleyBrussels Griffon13 weeksRuff
WrinklesShar-Pei12 weeksFluff
RixtonShetland Sheepdog15 weeksRuff
TimberLabrador Retriever14 weeksRuff
Andy CohenHavanese16 weeksRuff
TateBeagle14 weeksRuff

Instead of Broncos and Panthers, it's Ruff against Fluff in the Puppy Bowl as an arsenal of little critters will take to the gridiron and captivate an audience that might not be interested in football. 

The game helps round out the day for every member of the family—even those who feel that they are forced to sit through four hours of an actual football game that they might not understand. 

However, there is a much larger purpose to this event than just watching tiny dogs run around for an extended period of time, as Animal Planet explains:

This year, Animal Planet worked with 44 different animal shelters and rescue organizations from across the U.S. to fill the rosters of #TeamRuff and #TeamFluff with adoptable players for this epic matchup. The network also is partnering with the Pro Football Hall of Fame to introduce the Puppy Bowl Hall of Fame to honor legacy players throughout Puppy Bowl and promote the adoption of older "veteran" animals in addition to puppies and kittens.

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So while you're probably squealing with delight at the adorable participants of this year's Puppy Bowl while preparing for Super Bowl 50, just know that you're rooting for animals that have been given a second chance at a good life. 

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