The intrigue of the regular season is now much greater for many Mountain West teams. With two divisions and only two teams able to play in the inaugural Mountain West Conference Championship on December 7th, it is making for plenty of interesting discussion. Mountain West fans are loving the debate on which teams will play for the championship.
In the West division it appears that Fresno State has a clear path to the title game after their incredible defeat of Boise State on Friday night. The rest of the West has struggled mightily so far this year and no one looks to be really be in the same league right now. Fresno has also gained some BCS buster momentum and are now currently ranked 25th in the AP poll. The Bulldogs will still need to show that they can win on the road and also not get by surprise.
Wyoming has gained plenty of attention after their 56-23 victory over Air Force this weekend. The Pokes will see their schedule increase in difficulty as the season continues. I would expect Wyoming to be favored in their next four games. They are already 10.5 point favorites over Texas State this weekend. Then back to back home games with New Mexico and Colorado State. It will be tough playing San Jose State on the road but the Spartans haven't looked as sharp this year and just lost their best receiver for the year. With David Fales at quarterback they will still be able to move the ball and Wyoming hasn't faced many pass heavy teams.
The last month provides a gauntlet that could prove to be incredibly rewarding or painful. If Wyoming can win their next four games they'll enjoy a bye week and then host Fresno State on November 11th. The Bulldogs don't really face a grueling schedule between then and now and will likely arrive in Laramie undefeated. Last year the Bulldogs trounced Wyoming in Fresno. This is a much improved Cowboy team and playing this game in Laramie could prove to be a big advantage for the Pokes. The altitude combined with the potential for "Wyoming weather" could be a rude awakening for the boys from Cali.
Cowboys Football Schedule
|@ Nebraska||Sat 08/31||L 34 - 37|
|Idaho||Sat 09/07||W 42 - 10|
|Northern Colorado||Sat 09/14||W 35 - 7|
|@ Air Force||Sat 09/21||W 56 - 23|
|@ Texas State||Sat 09/28||5:00 PM MDT|
|New Mexico||Sat 10/12||1:30 PM MDT|
|Colorado St.||Sat 10/19||12:00 PM MDT|
|@ San Jose St.||Sat 10/26||5:00 PM MDT|
|Fresno St.||Sat 11/09||1:00 PM MST|
|@ Boise St.||Sat 11/16||TBA|
|Hawaii||Sat 11/23||12:05 PM MST|
|@ Utah State||Sat 11/30||12:00 PM MST|
The next big challenges will be trying to win on the road. If Wyoming can knock off Fresno then they'll need to beat Boise on the blue turf. That has is one of the rarest accomplishments in college football. I'll be in attendance for that game and the Pokes are 4-0 in those games. So that is certainly one thing in the Cowboys favor. It'll be interesting to see what time this game is played. The broadcast and kickoff is currently TBA due to the ESPN deal to broadcast all Bronco home games.
If the Cowboys are able to knock off Boise State then the showdown for the "Mountain" champ will likely occur on November 30th in Logan, UT. The Aggies have had two narrow losses to PAC-12 teams Utah and USC. The only common opponent between Wyoming and Utah State is Air Force who both teams handily beat. Wyoming had a 33 point margin of victory while Utah State only won by 32.
The great thing is that Wyoming controls it's own fate this season. If they keep on winning then they wil have opportunity to be the best in the Mountain West and make a lot of noise this season. With the schedule weighted heavily in the second half it could help provide a nice bounce the rankings.
First things first though.... beat Texas State this Saturday.