BERKELEY, CA - SEPTEMBER 01: Stephon Jefferson #25 and Nate McLaurin #39 of the University of Nevada celebrtates after Jefferson scores a touchdown against the University of California in the fourth quarter of an NCAA football game between the Nevada Wolf Pack and California Golden Bears at California Memorial Stadium on September 1, 2012 in Berkeley, California. Nevada won the game 31-24. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Withtwo weeks in the books we now have a better idea of what the Mountain West is going to look like this year. With 10 games left, there is still plenty that can change over the course of the year. Still we wanted to give a shot at putting together some power rankings. I'd say the top and bottom is fairly solid but there are plenty of moving parts in the middle.
Feel free to post your own rankings in the comments.
1. NEVADA 1-1
The Wolf Pack have come to the closest to starting off 2-0 and they did it against two BCSopponents. Nevada started the season off with a 31-24 road win against Cal. USF used a late score to eek out a 32-31 victory in Reno. Cody Fajardo has done a great job leading the offense in his second year. He is ranked fifth in FBS in total offense with 732 yards and has yet to throw a interception. So far Nevada is averaging 250 yards passing and 249 yards rushing - that is balance. Ifthe Pack can learn to play well on the islands, they have a strong start at finishing 4-1 in the month of September.
2. BOISE STATE 0-1
The Broncos did not look great in their loss to Michigan State in week one. Still they played terribly and were very close to knocking a top 15 team on the road. Coach P had plenty to work on in the bye week and I would expect a much improved offense the rest of the way. They should be able to handle Miami (OH) this week. The bigger test will be when the Broncos host BYU on Thursday, September 20th. There is still plenty of depth and talent on this roster. It just needs little more time to shine.
3. AIR FORCE 1-1
This was supposed to be a rebuilding year for the Falcons. Instead they have shown that there was plenty of depth to build upon and some dangerous new weapons. Cody Getz is third in the nation in rushing yards (174/game) and leads the nation with six rushing touchdowns. Connor Dietz is looking much better at quarterback then he did last year. Air Force crushed Idaho State and nearly beat Michigan in Ann Arbor. I would also favor them to win the Commanders in Chief Trophy again. Impressive job by Calhoun this year.
4. FRESNO STATE 1-1
The Bulldogs are known for their powerful offense and porous defense. So far the offense has shined and the defense has looked better then expected. Still they have yet play an equal opponent. Fresno beat up on Weber State and then lost by 17 points to Oregon. They had no answer for the Ducks powerful running attack. Not sure if Colorado will be a big test this weekend. Thefollowing week the Bulldogs travel to Tulsa and that should be a very competitive game. With Derek Carr and Robbie Rouse scoring will never be a problem.
5. WYOMING 0-2
The Cowboys are winlessyet still ranked ahead of several schools that have one win. Despite their record the upside for Wyoming is higher then the rest of the conference right now. Brett Smith is tearing is things up and is ranked eighth in the nation in total offense. He has done that against Texas on the road and one of the better MAC schools. The question right now is when will he be ready to play again after suffering a concussion late in the loss to Toledo. He has plenty of weapons to work with this year. The Cowboys have five receivers that are all capable of putting up big numbers. With Cal Poly this weekend and then a road trip to Idaho, the Cowboys will be facing some easier opponents in the near future.
6. SAN DIEGO STATE 1-1
The Aztecs have a better record then Cowboys but haven't shown that they are a dangerous team. The offense was pretty sluggish in the opener against Washington. What will need to carry this team is their defense. Currently they are just allowing 330 yards per game. Stopping Army is not a huge achievement, they still allowed 282 yards on the ground. Ryan Katz is more a game manager, not really a game changer like Ryan Lindley.
7. HAWAII 0-1
The Warriors are somewhat of a mystery right now. They lost to USC 49-10 and most teams would have been in the same boat. Then they took a bye week afterwards, this week they host FCSLamar. That should be an easy win. Norm Chow now has had some extra time to work with his players and help install more of his offense. Sean Schroeder only threw 208 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions in the opener. He'll need to improve if the offense is going to put some points. The running game was abysmal by gaining just 56 yards on 32 attempts. That number will certainly need to improve.
8. COLORADO STATE 1-1
The Rams started off their coaching era witha win over in-state rival Colorado. That was a great win for the program. They followed that up with a loss to FCS North Dakota State. It stinks to lose to a FCS school but the Bison are ranked #1 and won a national title last year. They are legit and this really wasn't much of an upset. Chris Nwoke missed the NDSU game, he is by far the best runner on the team and the Rams will need him to carry the offense this year.
9. NEW MEXICO 1-1
Bob Davie has brought the option to the Lobos and it appears to be working. They pounded Southern 66-21 in the season opener and gained 347 yards on the ground. A 45-0 battering by Texas was expected and the same thing will likely happen against Texas Tech this week. Still it seems like this offense will finally have some solid production this year. Not sure how many games New Mexico will win this year but they are headed in the right direction. Unlike these other guys.
10. UNLV 0-2
Bobby Hauck must love playing with the emotions of Rebel fans. Build them up, give them hope, then shatter everything and laugh in their face. In the opener against Minnesota the Rebels looked down right decent at times. They forced triple OT and there was some hope for the season after the close loss. They hung with a Big 10 team and nearly pulled off the upset. Next came Northern Arizona and here was Hauck just crushing any optimism the fans had for this year. The 17-14 loss is the second in two years against a FCS school. At least they have some cool new uniforms this year. Tim Cornettis a stud running back and is basically their only weapon on offense. Someone needs to clone him quick.