The problem isn’t motivation, the problem is time.. which is why I’ve been sporadic on getting these blogs out weekly this year. Don’t hate me, hate the man, who chained me to a desk. The desk, by the way, is in a basement surrounded by three LCD monitors. KMN (for those who don’t get this, go to Urban Dictionary and look it up). With that in mind, it’s time for the Mountain West preview for week six! It’s week six, right?
This week we get a full slate of Mountain West on Mountain West action, first time this season we get to see this kind of football porn. Last week we got to see some excitement with Boise State and Nevada finishing out a pretty entertaining night, and despite Cody Fajardo frequently hitting receivers wearing the wrong color blue still put a scare into Boise at the end of the night. Utah State scored a big upset with backup quarterback Darrel Garretson and put BYU away in Provo. That was pretty exciting. Air Force won the first leg of the Commander-in-Chief trophy by knocking off Navy. And per usual, UNLV and Hawaii are anxiously looking forward to basketball season. Except Hawaii, they suck at that too.
Just kidding Hawaii fan(s).. kind of.
Ha, who am I to talk smack, Wyoming goes the island this weekend. I have no idea what could happen there, but I usually prepare for disaster and have a full complement of Montana’s finest beers and alcohols on hand in case things get out of hand.
So football this week.. looks like our week starts off with San Diego State at New Mexico. Boy oh boy this should be … /falls asleep.
But seriously, Rocky Long gets to play his old team!! San Diego State last week discovered that life without Quinn Kaehler isn’t a lot of fun, with replacement QB Nick Bawden coming in and completing nine passes for 84 yards. That’s not good. Donnel Pumphery gained 94 yards on the ground but that wasn’t nearly enough to take down Fresno State on the road. New Mexico got a road win vs UTSA last week. The Lobos continued to do what they do, run the football with multiple quarterbacks and runningbacks.. at this point, I’m going to venture to say that they’re basically all the same. Though, watching Crusoe Gongbay throw the football might be kind of fun. What’s in store for these two teams this week? My guess is a heavy dose of the triple option and heavy dose of Pumphrey. Neither of these teams are going to spend a lot of time putting the ball in the air, at least, effectively. For those keeping score at home, New Mexico’s Dakota Cox is leading the Mountain West in tackles. That’s good, right?
Prediction: San Diego State in a close one.
Wow, two Friday games this week, how did we get so lucky?!
Fresno State at UNLV I hate to say is definitely not going to be the most interesting Mountain West game this week. UNLV is off to a slow start this year, sitting at 1-5 with their only win coming against FCS Northern Colorado in a nail biter. Fresno State, after starting off with basically murderers row cruised into the pillow fight part of their schedule by getting Southern Utah, New Mexico, and San Diego State all in a row, then a game with UNLV! Enjoy it this week, Bulldogs, next week you’re at Boise. UNLV received a skull thumping last week at the hands of San Jose State. Fresno State pulled out a win vs. San Diego State. This week? Welp, Bobby Hauck’s Rebels will probably fall to 1-6 and use the bye week to evaluate if giving Hauck another contract extension was a good idea. Fresno State will pummel the Rebs with a combination of Marteze Waller and Josh Harper. Harper is currently 4th in the Mountain West in receiving yards.
Prediction: UNLV gets beaten badly again. Waller runs for a lot of yards.
Lots of late games on Saturday, drink your Red Bull (with or without vodka, your choice) because there’s a host of MW games with 8pm or later starts. First off is Air Force at Utah State. Boy this game could be a lot of fun to watch. Air Force is enjoying a decent season so far, and Utah State is settling into life without Charles F. Keeton. Air Force has been busy doing Air Force things, beating Navy, beating Boise, losing to Wyoming. Is this team any harder to read? Kale Pearson is enjoying a nice season, accounting for most of AFAs offensive production. Utah State sure has been a puzzler too.. getting blown at Tennessee, beating Wake Forest and BYU, losing to Arkansas State.. they’re not doing anything particularly well on offense, but they’re still a good football team. Maybe them being 2nd in the Mountain West in total defense helps. This game is going to come down to AFA rushing offense vs. Utah State’s rushing defense. AFA is 2nd in the MW in rushing offense, Utah State 1st in rushing defense. Should be a highly entertaining game.
Prediction: Defense > Offense. Utah State wins because Kale Pearson’s going to be forced to chuck the rock and that probably won’t end well.
The next late game on tap for the MW is Colorado State at Nevada. This has potential for some fun too. The Rams (I always have to catch myself from saying Sheep) are enjoying a nice season sitting at 4-1 overall. Garrett Grayson is having a terrific year at quarterback. The Rams are fresh off of slapping Tulsa around in those … interesting orange jerseys last weekend. Nevada is also having a nice year sitting at 3-2, but coming off of a heartbreaker against Boise at home. Cody Fajardo didn’t enjoy his finest game in a big moment, but is still one of the better quarterbacks in the Mountain West. This game doesn’t mean much in terms of leading the West or Mountain division, but this could possibly be a championship game preview. Colorado State enjoys the top passing offense in the Mountain West, Nevada enjoys the worst passing defense in the league. You can basically see what’s going to happen right here, right?
Prediction: Colorado State enjoys a lot of success through the air, and Cody Fajardo will probably rack up a few yards, but the Rams win this one.
In the night cap, and for the crowd who’s been maintaining a steady buzz all day and wants to watch football until 1:30am (Mountain time, and it’s also the best time zone), then Wyoming and Hawaii have you covered! A 10:00pm start on Root Sports is just what college football junkies love. The Cowboys are visiting the island for the first time since 1997. The Cowboys have won six in a row vs the Rainbow Warriors. Hawaii’s suffered some injuries, including running back Joseph Iosefa, the leading rusher for the ‘bows last season. They also have questions at quarterback with Ikaika Woolsey.. will he be starting or will it be Ohio State transfer Taylor Graham? Hawaii is 1-4 on the season, their only win coming against FCS Northern Iowa. Wyoming comes in with a 3-2 record, their losses coming to Oregon and Michigan State. I heard they field pretty decent football programs. Can someone confirm? I have this feeling that this game, while neither team have been real impressive on offense, could turn into an ol’ fashioned WAC shootout. We’re bringing #WACtion back.
Yes, I hashtagged in a blog. YOLO.
Prediction: Beats the hell out of me. The ‘bows are tough on the island, Wyoming plays better defense. Magic 8 ball says Wyoming wins a close one.
That’s it for the Mountain West this week. It’s pretty clear at this point that the Mountain West will not be represented in the first ever college football playoff, and at this point, Colorado State is about the only team that could possibly get into one of the “big bowls.” Even then, I’d say they’re a real long shot as their SOS is hot garbage. We can still enjoy some terrific football being played right now. I think this week might be one of the better weeks we see for action, lots of great games. Colorado State and Nevada might be the most interesting as we could see this game again in December. Wyoming and Hawaii would really like it if someone would give back the Paniolo Trophy, because every athletic department needs a trophy with a cowboy roping a steer on it.
Boise State and San Jose State get the week off this week, Boise State has a few things to figure out, but their game vs BYU is looking more and more winnable by the minute, especially at home. BYU doesn’t have any healthy players left to play, I don’t think. Though, that Christian Stewart is looking like a good Taysom Hill replacement.
I must be drunk, I’m talking about BYU.
San Jose State gets a week to rest up before they make their first trip to Laramie since 1997. I think that this point they’re really wishing David Fales had another year of eligibility, and that they had the 2013 version of Jarrod Lawson. Enjoy your football this weekend, unless you’re out killing animals in the woods, then go out and enjoy that instead!
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