The 2019 Mountain West Preview with the Game of the Year, Players of the Year, top pro prospects, big-time players who deserve a bigger spotlight, and more.
Mountain West Team Previews, 5 Things To Know
Mountain Air Force | Boise State | Colorado State
New Mexico | Utah State | Wyoming
West Fresno State | Hawaii | Nevada
San Diego State | San Jose State | UNLV
Boise State is still terrific, and the rebirth of Fresno State has been fun, and San Diego State is solid, and Utah State is coming off a terrific season, but …
Has the Mountain West gone a little stale?
Maybe it’s because UCF has sucked all of the oxygen out of the Group of Five room – by the way, Knights, Boise State in the 2000s was there first in the deserves-a-bigger-chance argument – and maybe it’s because the rest of the conference hasn’t blown up like it should.
Who’s still waiting for UNLV to be a thing? Hand raised – more on that in a moment.
Colorado State has the infrastructure to be a whole lot better, Nevada is just starting to rise back up, and Hawaii was a blast last season, but Air Force struggled last year, New Mexico is in the doldrums, Wyoming can’t freaking score, and San Jose State just can’t find its footing.
This should be an interesting year for the league, but be shocked if the same players aren’t there right at the end. Boise State is the star of the Mountain – with Utah State lurking – Fresno State and San Diego State will be the main teams in the West – with Nevada lurking – and everyone else will be jockeying to get bowl eligible.
It’ll be everything to have a great first weekend – Boise State beating Florida State would be massive, and to come out with a few other wins over Power Five programs is a must – and there needs to be a buzz again.
Mountain West Team That Will Surprise
Yeah, you’ve heard this before – several times before. This time, UNLV really has the pieces in place to at least push for a six-win season after a disappointing 4-8 campaign. TO do that, keeping QB Armani Rogers in one piece is a must, and improving the defense would be nice.
Win the two games against miserable San Jose State and New Mexico teams last season, and there’s your 6-6 record. This year, with winnable games against Southern Utah, Arkansas State, Hawaii and San Jose State all at home, there soul be enough of a base of wins to make a decent run.
– UNLV Team Preview
Mountain West Team That Will Disappoint
It’s not just that last year’s head coach Matt Wells is gone to Texas Tech, or that Gary Andersen is taking over his program again. It’s not just that a slew of key parts are gone from last year’s amazing season. It’s that Utah State has to play a slew of better teams.
The Aggies will still be good, the offense should still be great, and Andersen – even with his time at Oregon State still fresh – but with games against Wake Forest, San Diego State, LSU and Fresno State on the road, and with Nevada, BYU and Boise State at home, don’t expect 11-2 again.
– Utah State Team Preview