Mountain West Football Weekly Release
|MOUNTAIN WEST FOOTBALL WEEK 7 SCHEDULE|
|Friday, October 10||TV/Web||Time||Satellite Radio|
|San Diego State at New Mexico*||ESPNU||7:30 p.m. MT||SIRIUS 93 / XM 201|
|Fresno State at UNLV*||CBS Sports Network||7 p.m. PT||SIRIUS 92 / XM 202|
|Saturday, October 11||TV/Web||Time||Satellite Radio|
|Air Force at Utah State*||ESPNU||8:15 p.m. MT|
|Colorado State at Nevada*||CBS Sports Network||7:30 p.m. PT|
|Wyoming at Hawai'i*||Oceanic TWC / ROOT SPORTS / MWN||6 p.m. HT|
|*Mountain West game|
WEEK 7 AT A GLANCE
Five Conference contests are on tap in Week 7, four of which will be televised nationally. Action gets underway with a doubleheader on Friday, Oct. 10, as San Diego State visits New Mexico in a cross-division match-up that will start at 7:30 p.m. MT on ESPNU. Meanwhile, Fresno State hits the road for a West Division tilt at UNLV. Action gets underway at 7 p.m. PT on CBS Sports Network.
Three games are set for Saturday, beginning at 7:30 p.m. PT as Nevada entertains Colorado State (CBS Sports Network). Utah State hosts Air Force beginning at 8:15 p.m. MT on ESPNU, while Wyoming makes the trip to Hawai‘i (6 p.m. HT, Oceanic TWC/ROOT SPORTS/MWN).
COLORADO STATE'S ROBERTS TIES MOUNTAIN WEST PAT RECORD
With six successful PAT attempts against Tulsa last Saturday, Colorado State senior PK Jared Roberts extended his streak of consecutive PATs made to 86, which ties the Mountain West record originally set by former Ram Jason Smith (Sept. 2, 2006 to Dec. 20, 2008).
RIVALS BOISE STATE AND NEVADA COMBINE FOR RARE OCCURANCE
Boise State and Nevada both notched an interception return touchdown in their contest last Saturday. Bronco junior LB Tyler Gray returned a pick 32 yards to the end zone for the first interception return TD of his career and second by Boise State this season. Nevada junior DE Ian Seau also had a 32-yard pick to score, marking the second straight week that the Wolf Pack has returned an interception to the end zone. Saturday's game marked the first time since Nov. 28, 2009 (San Diego State at UNLV) that two opposing teams returned an interception for a touchdown against each other in the same contest.
COLORADO STATE'S HIGGINS GRABS FOUR TDS AGAINST TULSA
Colorado State sophomore WR Rashard Higgins hauled in four receiving touchdowns vs. Tulsa last Saturday to set a program single-game record. The sophomore tied the Conference single-game mark and became the eighth MW player to accomplish the feat. His four receiving touchdowns, which tie the MW sophomore class record, also tie Miami (Ohio)'s Sam Martin for the most in a single FBS game this season. Higgins also became the first Ram wideout to record at least three receiving TDs in a single game since Dion Morton had three at Wyoming on Nov. 22, 2008.
BOISE STATE'S MILLER CLIMBING THE MW RECEPTION CHARTS
Boise State senior WR Matt Miller ranks fourth on the league's all-time list for career receptions with 244. UNLV's Ryan Wolfe (2006-09) holds the MW record for career receptions with 283, followed by San Diego State's J.R. Tolver (1999-02) with 262 and Wyoming's Jovon Bouknight (2002-05) with 250. Miller is also tied with Bouknight for third on the league's all-time list for career touchdown receptions with 29 apiece. Fresno State's Davante Adams (2012-13) is the MW's all-time record-holder in the category with 38, followed by BYU's Austin Collie (2004, 2007-08) with 30.
A HISTORIC NIGHT FOR THE AGGIES
Utah State's 35-20 victory at then-No. 19/18 BYU last Friday is the first win by an unranked MW team against a ranked non-conference foe in the regular season since Sept. 30, 2008 when UNLV defeated then-No. 19 Arizona State, 23-20. The Aggies have won three of their last four games against ranked opponents dating back to the 2012 season, including a 2-1 mark under head coach Matt Wells. USU's victory over the Cougars also snapped a 17-game road losing streak at BYU dating back to 1978.
UTAH STATE'S NICK VIGIL ALL OVER THE FIELD
Utah State's Nick Vigil played a total of 108 snaps in the Aggies' 35-20 victory at then-No. 19/18 BYU last Friday. The sophomore, who is traditionally a linebacker, made nine total tackles in the contest, including seven solo stops. Vigil also made his first-ever appearance at tailback, recording a career-high 16 carries for a career-best 57 yards and his first career touchdown.
HITTING THE HOLES
Two MW squads rank among the top 10 nationally in rushing offense, led by New Mexico, who is collecting 322.4 yards on the ground per game to rank fourth. The Lobos are trailed by Air Force, which is tallying 298.0 rushing yards per contest to rank 10th. The MW is one of two FBS leagues (Big Ten) with at least two of the top 10 rushing offenses in the country.
MW TRIO ON SACK ATTACK
Nevada senior Brock Hekking, UNLV senior Josh Shirley and Colorado State junior Cory James are three of the top eight active players in the FBS for total sacks. Hekking and Shirley are tied for fourth nationally with 19.5 apiece, while James is eighth with 17.5. The Mountain West is one of two FBS leagues (ACC) with three of the top eight nationally in career total sacks.
|MOST TOTAL SACKS BY AN ACTIVE FBS PLAYER: CAREER|
|1.||Vic Beasley, Clemson||28.0|
|2.||Martin Ifedi, Memphis||20.0|
|Leighton Gasque, Middle Tennessee||20.0|
|4.||Brock Hekking, Nevada||19.5|
|Josh Shirley, UNLV||19.5|
|Andre Monroe, Maryland||19.5|
|7.||Lorenzo Mauldin, Louisville||18.0|
|8.||Cory James, Colorado State||17.5|
MW'S CONSISTENT KICKERS
Three MW kickers rank among the top 15 nationally for career field goal percentage. Air Force senior Will Conant leads the league and ranks seventh in the country, connecting on 18-of-21 field goal attempts for a percentage of 0.857. Colorado State senior Jared Roberts is 10th (33-of-39, 0.846), while Nevada sophomore Brent Zuzo is tied for 15th (18-of-22, 0.818). The Mountain West is one of three FBS conferences (ACC, SEC) with two of the top 10 and three of the top 15 in career field goal percentage. Below is a look at the top 15 nationally:
|HIGHEST FIELD GOAL PERCENTAGE BY AN ACTIVE FBS PLAYER: CAREER|
|1.||Kyle Bullard, Houston||18||18||1.000|
|2.||Robert Aguayo, Florida State||34||33||0.971|
|3.||Colby Delahoussaye, LSU||18||17||0.944|
|4.||Michael Geiger, Michigan State||24||21||0.875|
|5.||Mike Hunnicutt, Oklahoma||80||69||0.863|
|6.||Elliott Fry, South Carolina||29||25||0.862|
|7.||Will Conant, Air Force||21||18||0.857|
|8.||Chris Blewitt, Pittsburgh||27||23||0.852|
|9.||Jeremiah Detmer, Toledo||67||57||0.851|
|10.||Jared Roberts, Colorado State||39||33||0.846|
|11.||Andy Phillips, Utah||32||27||0.844|
|12.||Josiah Yazdani, Ohio||25||21||0.840|
|13.||Zane Gonzalez, Arizona State||36||30||0.833|
|Josh Lambo, Texas A&M||18||15||0.833|
|15.||Brent Zuzo, Nevada||22||18||0.818|
|Ian Frye, Virginia||22||18||0.818|
BOISE STATE'S MILLER, WYOMING'S RUFRAN GRABBING ATTENTION
The Mountain West is home to the nation's top two players in consecutive games with a reception. Boise State senior Matt Miller, who did not play in Week 6 due to injury, leads the list with 44 consecutive outings with a catch, followed by Wyoming senior Dominic Rufran with 42. The MW is the only FBS league with four players to have recorded a reception in 30 or more consecutive games, as Fresno State senior Josh Harper is tied for sixth on the list with 33 straight and UNLV senior Devante Davis is 15th with 30.
|CONSECUTIVE GAMES WITH A RECEPTION: FBS|
|1.||Matt Miller, Boise State||44|
|2.||Dominic Rufran, Wyoming||42|
|3.||Justin Hardy, East Carolina||41|
|4.||Rashad Greene, Florida State||34|
|Tyler Lockett, Kansas State||34|
|6.||Josh Harper, Fresno State||33|
|Jordan Leslie, BYU||33|
|Jamison Crowder, Duke||33|
|9.||D.J. Foster, Arizona State||32|
|Quinton Dunbar, Florida||32|
|Tommy Shuler, Marshall||32|
|12.||J.D. McKissic, Arkansas State||31|
|Geremy Davis, Connecticut||31|
|Alonzo Russell, Toledo||31|
|15.||Devante Davis, UNLV||30|
Miller's streak of 44 straight games with a reception has surpassed BYU's Dennis Pitta (10/23/04 to 11/20/04; 9/1/07 to 12/22/09) for third on the Mountain West's all-time list, while Rufran has eclipsed UNLV's Earvin Johnson (9/29/01 to 11/20/04) for fifth. Below is a list of the top five in league history:
|CONSECUTIVE GAMES WITH A RECEPTION: MOUNTAIN WEST|
|1.||Casey Flair, UNLV||47||9/5/05 to 11/22/08|
|Jovon Bouknight, Wyoming||47||8/31/02 to 11/19/05|
|3.||Matt Miller, Boise State||44||9/3/11 to Present|
|4.||Dennis Pitta, BYU*||43||10/23/04 to 11/20/04;
9/1/07 to 12/22/09
|5.||Dominic Rufran, Wyoming||42||9/3/11 to Present|
|6.||Earvin Johnson, UNLV||41||9/29/01 to 11/20/04|
|*Left team to serve church mission during 2005 and 2006 seasons.|
RECEIVING NATIONAL ACCLAIM
Four Mountain West players rank among the top 15 nationally for career receiving yards, led by Boise State senior Matt Miller, who is second among all active players with 3,049 yards. UNLV senior Devante Davis ranks 11th with 2,454 receiving yards, while Fresno State senior Josh Harper is 14th with 2,236 and Wyoming senior Dominic Rufran is 15th with 2,217. The Mountain West is the only FBS league with more than two of the top 15 nationally in career receiving yards:
|MOST RECEIVING YARDS BY AN ACTIVE FBS PLAYER: CAREER|
|1.||Justin Hardy, East Carolina||3,526|
|2.||Matt Miller, Boise State||3,049|
|3.||Rashad Greene, Florida State||3,041|
|4.||Titus Davis, Central Michigan||3,040|
|5.||Jamison Crowder, Duke||2,940|
|6.||Tommy Shuler, Marshall||2,753|
|7.||Antonio Vaughan, Old Dominion||2,657|
|8.||Tyler Lockett, Kansas State||2,594|
|9.||Mike Evans, Texas A&M||2,499|
|10.||Amari Cooper, Alabama||2,482|
|11.||Devante Davis, UNLV||2,454|
|12.||Larry Pinkard, Old Dominion||2,338|
|13.||Kenny Bell, Nebraska||2,321|
|14.||Josh Harper, Fresno State||2,236|
|15.||Dominic Rufran, Wyoming||2,217|
Four MW players also rank in the top 12 of active players in the FBS for career receptions. Boise State senior Matt Miller leads the league and ranks third nationally with 244 receptions, followed by Wyoming senior Dominic Rufran, who is ninth with 179, UNLV senior Devante Davis is 11th with 169, and Fresno State senior Josh Harper is 12th with 168. The Mountain West is the only FBS conference with more than two of the top 12 active players in career receptions.
|MOST RECEPTIONS BY AN ACTIVE FBS PLAYER: CAREER|
|1.||Justin Hardy, East Carolina||303|
|2.||Tommy Shuler, Marshall||256|
|3.||Matt Miller, Boise State||244|
|4.||Jamison Crowder, Duke||227|
|5.||J.D. McKissic, Arkansas State||215|
|6.||Rashad Greene, Florida State||209|
|7.||Antonio Vaughan, Old Dominion||197|
|8.||Jaxon Shipley, Texas||188|
|9.||Dominic Rufran, Wyoming||179|
|10.||Tyler Lockett, Kansas State||172|
|11.||Devante Davis, UNLV||169|
|12.||Josh Harper, Fresno State||168|
LEADER OF THE PACK
Nevada senior QB Cody Fajardo is the third player in Wolf Pack history to reach 11,000 career yards of total offense. With 377 total yards against Boise State last Saturday, including 306 passing and 71 rushing, Fajardo brought his current total to 11,018, trailing only Colin Kaepernick (14,210 from 2007-10) and David Neill (11,145 from 1998-2001) on the program's all-time chart.
Fajardo's 11,018 career yards currently rank fourth among all active players in the FBS. Below is a breakdown of the top five:
|MOST TOTAL YARDS BY AN ACTIVE FBS QUARTERBACK: CAREER|
|1.||Taylor Heinicke, Old Dominion||14,339|
|2.||Rakeem Cato, Marshall||12,089|
|3.||Sean Mannion, Oregon State||11,151|
|4.||Cody Fajardo, Nevada||11,018|
|5.||Connor Halliday, Washington State||10,062|
Fajardo has moved into the top five among the league's all-time leaders for rushing quarterbacks. The senior signal caller has rushed for 2,059 yards and 25 touchdowns since Nevada joined the Mountain West in 2012. That ranks fourth and tied for fourth on the league's all-time lists for career rushing yards and touchdowns, respectively. Fajardo's 396 career rushing attempts sits just outside the top five at No. 6. Below is a look at where Fajardo's numbers fall among the league's all-time top rushing QBs:
|MOST RUSHING ATTEMPTS BY AN MW QUARTERBACK: CAREER|
|1.||Shaun Carney, Air Force||652||2004-07|
|2.||Tim Jefferson, Air Force||496||2008-11|
|3.||Chance Harridge, Air Force||462||2001-03|
|4.||Bradlee Van Pelt, Colorado State||420||2001-03|
|5.||Andy Dalton, TCU||413||2007-10|
|6.||Cody Fajardo, Nevada||396||2012-Present|
|MOST RUSHING YARDS BY AN MW QUARTERBACK: CAREER|
|1.||Shaun Carney, Air Force||2,561||2004-07|
|2.||Chance Harridge, Air Force||2,324||2001-03|
|3.||Bradlee Van Pelt, Colorado State||2,274||2001-03|
|4.||Cody Fajardo, Nevada||2,059||2012-Present|
|5.||Tim Jefferson, Air Force||1,988||2008-11|
|MOST RUSHING TOUCHDOWNS BY AN MW QUARTERBACK: CAREER|
|1.||Chance Harridge, Air Force||35||2001-03|
|2.||Tim Jefferson, Air Force||33||2008-11|
|3.||Shaun Carney, Air Force||31||2004-07|
|4.||Cody Fajardo, Nevada||25||2012-Present|
|Bradlee Van Pelt, Colorado State||25||2001-03|
MW QUARTERBACKS QUICK ON THEIR FEET
New Mexico junior signal caller Cole Gautsche is tied for second on the MW's all-time chart for most 100-yard rushing games by a quarterback with eight. Nevada senior QB Cody Fajardo is fourth on the list. He has nine total 100-yard games in his career, including seven since the Wolf Pack joined the Conference in 2012.
|MOST 100-YARD RUSHING GAMES BY A MW QUARTERBACK: CAREER|
|1.||Chance Harridge, Air Force||9||2000-03|
|2.||Cole Gautsche, New Mexico||8||2012-Present|
|Bradlee Van Pelt, Colorado State||8||2000-03|
|4.||Cody Fajardo, Nevada||7||2012-Present|
Fajardo and Gautsche are two of four active quarterbacks in the FBS this season with at least eight career 100-yard rushing games. Fajardo is tied for second nationally behind injured Ohio State QB Braxton Miller, while Gautsche is tied for fourth:
|MOST 100-YARD RUSHING GAMES BY AN ACTIVE FBS QUARTERBACK: CAREER|
|1.||Braxton Miller, Ohio State||14|
|2.||Cody Fajardo, Nevada||9|
|Keenan Reynolds, Navy||9|
|4.||Cole Gautsche, New Mexico||8|
|Taysom Hill, BYU||8|
|C.J. Brown, Maryland||8|
MOUNTAIN VS. WEST
The Mountain and West Divisions have split the two cross-divisional contests of the 2014 season, as Fresno State downed New Mexico 35-24 on Sept. 26 and Boise State defeated Nevada 51-46 last Saturday. The West Division holds an all-time record of 13-8 (.619) against opponents from the Mountain Division since divisional play was instated in the Mountain West in 2013.
Below is a comparison of the Mountain vs. West Divisions after the Conference concluded its first season with divisional play in 2013:
|Mountain Division||West Division|
|2013 Record vs. West Division: 7-12 (.368)
MW Championship Game Record: 0-1
Bowl Appearances: 3
Bowl Record: 2-1
Teams with eight or more victories: 3
All-Time Record vs. West: 8-13 (.381)
|2013 Record vs. Mountain Division: 12-7 (.632)
MW Championship Game Record: 1-0
Bowl Appearances: 3
Bowl Record: 1-2
Teams with eight or more victories: 2
All-Time Record vs. Mountain: 13-8 (.619)
QUICK HITS FROM AROUND THE MOUNTAIN WEST
- Nevada senior QB Cody Fajardo threw four interceptions against Boise State last Saturday, which ties for the fourth-most in a single game in MW history. Fajardo had entered the contest having only thrown one pick in the previous four games combined. It is the third time this season that an MW quarterback has thrown four interceptions in a single game, as the Broncos' Grant Hedrick has done so twice this season (Aug. 28 vs. Ole Miss, Sept. 27 at Air Force).
- San Diego State sophomore Donnel Pumphrey and Boise State junior Jay Ajayi are two of 17 players in the FBS this season with at least eight rushing touchdowns through the first six weeks of the 2014 season. Pumphrey has nine on the year to tie with three other players, while Ajayi has eight to tie with 10 others.
- Nevada (1), San Diego State (1) and UNLV (1) are three of 17 teams in the FBS that have lost one or fewer fumbles in 2014. The Mountain West is one of four leagues (Big 12, Pac-12, SEC) with three of the top 17 teams ranked nationally in fewest fumbles lost.
- Five MW players have recovered multiple fumbles this season, including two from Utah State. The Aggies' Devin Centers and LT Filiaga are joined by Boise State sophomore Tanner Vallejo, Fresno State senior Derron Smith and Wyoming senior Patrick Mertens with two apiece on the year. Utah State is one of five FBS programs with at least two players to recover multiple fumbles this year, joining FIU, Temple, Vanderbilt and Virginia.
- San José State junior kicker Austin Lopez ranks eighth among all active players in career field goals (46) and career points per game (8.1). He is the only player in the FBS to rank in the top eight of both categories. Lopez became the Spartans' all-time leader in points scored (242) and field goals made (46) with four FG and three successful PAT attempts against UNLV last Saturday.
- Three MW players, including two from Boise State, rank among the top 11 nationally in career interceptions. Fresno State senior safety Derron Smith leads all active FBS players with 14 career picks for the Bulldogs. Boise State junior Darian Thompson is tied for fourth nationally with 11 interceptions, while fellow Bronco junior Donte Deayon is tied for ninth (10). The Mountain West is one of two FBS conferences (C-USA) with three active players that have double digits in career interceptions, and Boise State is the only team in the country with two players to do so.
- Fresno State, Hawai‘i San Diego State and Wyoming are four of 31 teams in the FBS who have recorded at least one blocked punt and one blocked kick in the 2014 season. The Aztecs have blocked three kicks and one punt in 2014, while the Bulldogs, Rainbow Warriors and Cowboys have blocked one punt and one kick apiece. The four squads make the Mountain West one of three FBS leagues (Big Ten, C-USA) with at least four squads to block at least one punt and one kick this year.
- Two MW players rank among the top 12 nationally in active career rushing yards. Nevada senior QB Cody Fajardo has racked up 2,735 career rushing yards to rank ninth among all active players and second among all active quarterbacks. Boise State junior RB Jay Ajayi ranks 12th among all active players with 2,682 career yards on the ground.
- Two MW signal callers are among the top 12 FBS quarterbacks in career passing yardage. Nevada senior Cody Fajardo ranks sixth among active players with 8,265 career passing yards for the Wolf Pack, while Colorado State senior Garrett Grayson is 12th with 6,681 yards under center for the Rams. The Mountain West is one of three FBS leagues (Pac-12, AAC) with multiple active quarterbacks in the top 12 for career passing yardage.
- Four MW quarterbacks tallied at least one passing and one rushing touchdown in Week 6, led by Nevada senior Cody Fajardo who had three in the air and two on the ground against Boise State last Saturday. Fajardo has posted 11 career games with at least one passing and one rushing TD, including eight since the Wolf Pack joined the Conference in 2012. Utah State sophomore Darrel Garretson had his first career outing with at least one passing and one rushing TD in the same game after throwing for three and rushing for one at then-No. 19/18 BYU. Boise State senior Grant Hedrick completed two touchdown passes and rushed for one TD at Nevada, marking the second time this season and fourth in his career that Hedrick passed and ran for at least one touchdown in the same game. San José State junior Joe Gray accomplished the feat for the first time in his career with one apiece against UNLV, marking his first career passing and rushing touchdowns.
|MW FOOTBALL BY THE NUMBERS|
|3||Colorado State has rattled off three consecutive victories over teams from the five High Resource conferences. The Rams are the only squad outside of the High Resource Five with a current win streak of three games against teams in those leagues. CSU is one of two teams outside the High Resource Five (ULM) that has notched at least one victory in each of the past three seasons against an opponent from those conferences.|
|4||Four MW teams have recorded multiple blocked kicks this year, including New Mexico (3), San Diego State (3), Air Force (2) and Colorado State (2). The Lobos, Aztecs, Falcons and Rams are four of 27 teams nationally to stop multiple kick attempts this season, making the Mountain West one of four conferences (Big Ten, C-USA, SEC) with four teams to stop multiple kicks in 2014.|
|4||Colorado State finished non-conference play undefeated (4-0) for the first time since 1994.|
|8||Utah State and Boise State are two of nine programs in the FBS to average more than eight team tackles for loss per game. The Aggies are tied with Tennessee for third nationally, averaging 8.4 TFL per outing, while the Broncos are tied for sixth with a net of 8.2 TFL per contest.|
|8||Colorado State sophomore WR Rashard Higgins ranks second nationally with eight receiving touchdowns this season. The sophomore trails only Colorado's Nelson Spruce, who has 10 thus far in 2014.|
|9||Boise State and Utah State are two of 11 teams in the FBS with at least nine interceptions in 2014. The Broncos are tied with Louisville for the national lead with 12 picks this year, while the Aggies are tied for fourth in the country with nine.|
|11||All 11 MW teams that played in Week 6 recorded multiple sacks in their respective games.|
|15||Boise State and Utah State are two of nine FBS squads who have gained at least 15 turnovers through the first six weeks of the 2014 season. The Broncos are tied with Michigan State for fourth in the country with 16 turnovers gained this year, while the Aggies are tied for sixth with 15.|
|63||Air Force's streak of 63 straight outings with a rushing touchdown came to a close in Saturday's contest vs. Navy. That streak, which started in an Oct. 3, 2009 meeting with the Midshipmen, was the longest such stretch in the FBS.|
|108||Utah State sophomore Nick Vigil played a total of 108 snaps in the Aggies' 35-20 victory at then-No. 19/18 BYU, appearing in his traditional linebacker role as well as his first outing at tailback.|
WEEKLY COACHES PRESS CONFERENCES