Interesting week in the Mountain West. It’s pretty clear at this point that defense is pretty much optional in this league. If you’re Air Force, charged with protecting the security of this country, does not do a very good job of protecting opponents from getting into their endzone. I’m really glad they’re good at the first thing. Please don’t laser bomb my apartment. Wyoming.. they’ve been reading a lot of their own press clippings and this week it bit ‘em. Fresno State.. took the foot off the gas a little early and almost became mockery for all of us.. however, I cannot guarantee that I won’t ridicule them. However, one thing I think we can be thankful for.. at least we’re not USC. Onto the week!
Utah State and San Jose State got us started by playing some American football on the mothership on Friday night. This was a great opportunity for one Charles F. Keeton to get his name in the paper, and that he did! Keeton had 260 yards, three touchdowns through the air plus another 52 in the ground and another TD. The guy is a video game character. On the other side of the ball was David Fales.. man, that guy is missing Noel Grigsby. Fales was 25/48 for 314 and two INTs. Not a great showing for a guy projected to be a first or second rounder in next spring’s NFL draft. Scary injury for SJSUs Bene Benwikere as he was carted off the field on an awkward tackle late in the game. He was later released with a concussion. Utah State took this one 40-12. The Aggies will play host to BYU on Friday night, San Jose State will take a trip across the Pacific to take on Hawaii.
Colorado State and UTEP were one of those teams I mentioned earlier about not wanting to play a lot of defense. Seriously, 59-42. I could have sworn they disbanded the WAC last year, but apparently it’s alive and well. The Rams jumped out to a 28-7 lead at the half, including a touchdown pass from Garrett Grayson and wide receiver Joe Hansley. UTEP wasn’t done though, they ripped off 21 straight to even the score in the third quarter. UTEP quarterback Jameill Showers threw five of his own touchdowns. At some point this game ended and the Rams had 59 points. It’s been a long time since a Ram offense has done that. The Rams will be on a bye next week.
San Diego State.. welcome to the 2013 Mountain West football season. I was starting to think they were never going to break the win column, and if they didn’t do it this week they may never have. They were taking on the mighty New Mexico State Aggies. The Aztecs almost lost this game too. They were down 16-11 going into the fourth quarter. Yeah, that score looks pretty weird, but we’re dealing with the Aztecs here, this whole season has been weird. The guy who apparently replaced Adam Muema on the depth chart, Donnel Pumphrey, rushed for 167 yards and three touchdowns, all coming with 20 minutes left in regulation to save the Aztecs some embarrassment. SDSU got news today that linebacker Jake Fely has a broken bone in his foot and will likely miss the rest of the season. Bad news for the Aztec defense. San Diego State will host Nevada Friday night to take on the Wolf Pack on ESPN.
UNLV and New Mexico also decided that defense was optional in their WAC matchup. UNLV has been on a roll lately, mostly since Bobby Hauck decided to make the change from Nick Sherry to Caleb Herring. Caleb Herring is making a believer out of people. He went 24/34 for 293 and four touchdowns. Tim Cornett got back to his bad self by rushing for 179 yards and three touchdowns. However, this game was not a pretty little bow-tie as the final score indicates. At halftime of this game New Mexico had rushed for 400 yards. IN ONE HALF OF FOOTBALL! UNLV made some nice halftime adjustments and limited New Mexico to 97 rushing yards and one score. Kasey Carrier had 192 yards rushing, while Carlos Wiggins added 119 more, and quarterback Cole Gautsche rushed for 108. The Lobos only attempted 13 passes. Obviously not an offense made for making a comeback. UNLV will have a bye next week. New Mexico will battle it out with their cross-state rival New Mexico State to see which team in the state of New Mexico sucks the worst. Hint: It’s both.
Air Force and Nevada in another classic WAC matchup turned into a scoring fest. That’s something Air Force never really gets to say, and quite frankly, I’m surprised because AFA was playing with their third string quarterback due to a suspension of Jaleel Awini. Air Force was in control of this game most of the way but a big 4th quarter from the Wolf Pack (two words) sealed it up for them. Nevada’s big news was quarterback Cody Fajardo made his return this week from injury and he came back in a big way. He went 38/54 for 389 and 3 TDs. Big night from the junior quarterback. Nevada scored their go-ahead touchdown with 1:45 left in the game on a Cody Fajardo rush, his second of the day. Fajardo’s two favorite targets, Aaron Bradley and Brandon Wimberly combined for 269 of Fajardo’s passing yards. Air Force quarterback Karson Roberts made a strong debut throwing for 55 yards and a score and also rushed for 161 and two more scores. The road doesn’t get any easier for the Falcons as they head to Navy next, while Nevada will take on San Diego State.
Boise State, as I predicted last week, took out a lot of frustration on Southern Mississippi who made the trip to be beaten very badly. Lieutenant Jim Dangle had another solid outing for the Broncos going 19/23 and 268 yards and three scores. After developing a case of the dropsies last week Jay Ajayi got back in the good graces of coaches this week by going 83 yards and a score for the Broncos. Wide receiver Matt Miller caught 107 yards worth of passes, one of those being a score. Dan Goodale, on the other hand.. had two PAT misses. Good grief, man. That guy might cost the Broncos a game sometime this season. Boise will be on bye next week. Man, is the Mountain West giving scoreboards a bye week or something?
Wyoming made the trip to soggy Texas to take on Texas State, of the non-Necessary Roughness variety. If you don’t get the movie reference, watch it. Sinbad is in the movie! Wyoming would really really like a mulligan on this game, and they would really like it if lightning would stop delaying their games. For the third time this season Wyoming was delayed by lightning.. it just so happens that the lightning delay occurred when the offense was starting to roll. After three and a half hours of delay, and a pretty wet field the Bobcat offense took over and rushed the ball a lot, and usually for a score. Wyoming’s defense showed that they still can’t stop the run. Wyoming will have a bye week coming up.
Not gonna lie, this one still stings. I almost divorced college football this weekend.
In the night cap, Fresno State took its football program and went on a Hawaiian vacation. The Bulldogs scampered out to a 42-3 lead nearing the end of the 4th quarter. Apparently the Bulldogs felt the game was over so they decided to insert those really muscly cheerleader guys that throw people in the air and hold up 120 pound girls up with one arm. BIG MISTAKE.. especially when you’re playing Sean Schroeder (?) . Norm Chow still can’t decide on a quarterback, as he played two of them in this game.. at least it wasn’t four this week. Fresno State needed to bat a hail mary pass down at the end of the game to save a victory in this one. Fresno State will go to … lol… Idaho next to take on the Vandals. Hawaii will play host to San Jose State.
Seriously, does anyone in the Mountain West have a good defense? Utah State? Maybe? The only offense that Utah State has faced so far is Utah. I guess we’ll find out a little more about the Aggies in the next couple of weeks as they play BYU and Boise State in back to back weeks. Wyoming laid a huge egg against Texas State. Fresno nearly laid a really big egg this week. The Mountain West needs better performance out of its top teams if they’re going to be taken seriously. Seriously.