Mountain West Football Press Release Week No. 1
Aug. 28, 2012
WELCOME TO THE MOUNTAIN WEST
Fresno State and Nevada officially became members of the Mountain West on July 1, 2012. In addition, Hawai`i became a football-only member of the Mountain West on July 1. While Fresno State, Hawai`i and Nevada are official newcomers to the Mountain West, all three squads are certainly not strangers to the league. The Warriors have faced six MW opponents at least 20 times in their history, including Fresno State (44), San Diego State (26), New Mexico (21), UNLV (21), Colorado State (20) and Wyoming (20). The Bulldogs have competed against San Diego State 51 times and against Nevada on 43 occasions The Wolf Pack have squared off against Boise State 38 times and has met instate rival UNLV on 37 occasions in a battle for the Fremont Cannon.
San Jose State and Utah State will become official members of the Mountain West, effective with the 2013-14 academic year. The addition of the Spartans and Aggies on July 1, 2013 will bring the full-time membership of the Mountain West to nine institutions and 10 football-playing members.
BSU, SDSU TO PLAY FINAL SEASON IN MOUNTAIN WEST
Boise State and San Diego State will each compete in the Mountain West for one more year, exiting the league as of July 1, 2013. The Aztecs are founding members of the Mountain West and will play their final league contest on November 24 with a trip to Wyoming. The Broncos joined the MW in 2011 and will close out the 2012 Conference slate with a December 1 trip to Nevada.
The Mountain West kicks off its 14th football season with three games against top 25 opponents and seven televised contests. UNLV opens the season on Thursday night hosting Minnesota at 8 p.m. PT on CBS Sports Network. #22/24 Boise State travels to East Lansing for a battle with #13/13 Michigan State on ESPN Friday night at 8 p.m. ET.
On Saturday, Nevada begins its first season in the Mountain West with a game at California. Pac-12 Networks will televise the contest beginning at Noon PT. Colorado State and Colorado will face-off at Sports Authority Field at Mile High Stadium in Denver beginning at 2 p.m. MT on FX. Hawai`i opens its first season of play in the MW with a road game at #3/1 USC. Fox will broadcast the matchup at 4:30 p.m. PT. Wyoming heads to Austin to play #15/15 Texas with The Longhorn Network airing the game beginning at 7 p.m. PT. San Diego State travels to Seattle to face Washington at 7:30 p.m. PT on the Pac-12 Networks.
A LOOK AT THE 2012 MOUNTAIN WEST SCHEDULE
The 2012 Mountain West football schedule is comprised of 82 games, including 40 Conference matchups. The 2012 schedule plays out over 14 weeks and concludes Saturday, December 1.
The non-conference schedule features 15 games against teams that earned bowl berths in 2011, including BYU (two games), California, Louisiana Tech, Oregon, Michigan, Michigan State, Southern Miss, Texas (two games), Toledo, Tulsa, Utah State (two games) and Washington. Five non-conference opponents begin the 2012 season ranked in the top 25 (Coaches'/AP) - #4/1 USC, #5/5 Oregon, #8/8 Michigan, #13/13 Michigan State, and #15/15 Texas.
|Big 12:||Texas (2), Texas Tech|
|Big Ten:||Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota|
|C-USA:||Tulsa, Southern Miss|
|MAC:||Toledo, Miami (Ohio)|
|Pac-12:||California, Colorado (2), Oregon, USC, Washington, Washington State|
|Sun Belt:||South Alabama|
|WAC:||Idaho, Louisiana Tech, New Mexico State, San Jose State (2), Texas State (2), Utah State (2)|
|Independent:||Army (2), BYU (2), Navy|
|FCS:||Cal Poly, Idaho State, Lamar, North Dakota, North Dakota State, Northern Arizona, Northwestern State, Southern, Weber State|
2012 MOUNTAIN WEST BOWL ARRANGEMENTS
The Mountain West has agreements to send five teams to bowl games in 2012. Since the league's inception in 1999, the Mountain West has posted a 31-20 bowl record and has captured the Bowl Challenge Cup four times in the last eight years. Over the past eight seasons, the MW owns the best win percentage in bowl games among the 11 FBS conferences with a 24-12 mark (.667). The SEC is second with a 42-22 (.656) record, followed by the Big East at 24-16 (.600) and the Big 12 at 34-28 (.548).
|MAACO Las Vegas||Pac-12||Dec. 22|
|San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia||BYU||Dec. 20|
|Bell Helicopter Armed Forces||C-USA||Dec. 29|
|Gildan New Mexico||Pac-12||Dec. 15|
|Sheraton Hawai`i||C-USA||Dec. 24|
BOISE STATE PICKED TO CAPTURE MW TITLE
Boise State is predicted to capture the 2012 Mountain West football title. The Broncos garnered 27 first-place votes, and earned a total of 296 points in a poll of media members. Boise State posted a 12-1 overall mark in 2011, en route to top 10 rankings in the final USA Today/Coaches' (6) and Associated Press (8) polls. The Broncos return five starters from an offensive unit that ranked fifth nationally in scoring offense (44.23 ppg) last year and ninth in total offense (481.3 yards per game). Three starters return for the Boise State defense, which ranked 12th nationally in scoring defense (18.7 points per game) and 16th in total defense (320.85 yards per game). The Broncos are led by preseason all-MW performers Mike Atkinson (DL), Mitch Burroughs (RS), Joe Kellogg (OL), Matt Miller (WR) and Jamar Taylor (DB).
|2012 Mountain West Football Predicted Order of Finish|
|Rk.||Team (first place votes)||Points|
|1.||Boise State (27)||296|
|3.||Fresno State (2)||231|
|5.||San Diego State (1)||173|
A LOOK AT THE PRESEASON PREDICTIONS
Since the MW began play in 1999, only five teams chosen by the league media to win the conference crown have actually done so. Below is a look at how the preseason poll favorite has fared in regular-season play.
|Year||Predicted Champion||Predicted Champ Finish||Actual Champion||Bowl Game|
|2011||Boise State||2nd||TCU||Las Vegas|
|2003||Colorado State||3rd||Utah||San Francisco|
|2002||Colorado State||1st||Colorado State||Liberty|
|2001||Colorado State||2nd||BYU||New Orleans|
|1999||BYU||T-1st||BYU/Colorado State/Utah||Motor City|
MW TEAMS IN SEASON OPENERS
Mountain West teams are 63-47 in season openers since the inception of the league in 1999. MW teams are 46-15 at home and 12-24 on the road. Below is an all-time breakdown of the Mountain West in season openers.
|San Diego State||5-8||5-5||0-3||0-0|
|^Boise State became a member of the MW in July 2011.
~Fresno State, Hawai`i and Nevada became members of the MW in July 2012.
*TCU: MW member from 2005-2011.
#BYU and Utah: MW members from 1999-2010.
BRONCOS DEBUT AT NO. 22 AND NO. 24 IN PRESEASON POLLS
Boise State will enter the 2012 college football season ranked No. 22 in the preseason USA Today/Coaches' Top 25 and No. 24 in the Associated Press poll. This is the seventh straight year that a Mountain West team has appeared in the preseason rankings.
BSU has opened the season ranked in both the Coaches' and AP polls four consecutive years. The Broncos own the nation's second-longest streak of 62 consecutive weeks ranked in the top 25 of both the Coaches' and AP polls, trailing Alabama by three weeks.
|Nation's Current Longest Ranked Streak|
|1.||Alabama||65||Aug. 31, 2008|
|2.||Boise State||62||Sept. 21, 2008|
|4.||Oregon||45||Sept. 27, 2009|
|5.||Nebraska||36||Nov. 29, 2009|
Heading into the 2012 season, Colorado State leads the Mountain West with 16 returning starters. Below is a breakdown of key returnees.
|San Diego State||13||7||6||0|
BSU IS WINNINGEST TEAM IN FBS SINCE 2002
Boise State has amassed 118 wins since the start of the 2002 season, making the Broncos the winningest team at the FBS level during that time. Below is a breakdown of the top five leaders nationally:
|MOST WINS OVER THE LAST 10 YEARS (2002-PRESENT)|
|BEST HOME RECORD SINCE 2003|
|BEST ROAD/NEUTRAL WINNING PERCENTAGE SINCE 2003|
FOUR NEW HEAD COACHES JOIN MW RANKS IN 2012
The Mountain West welcomes four new head football coaches in 2012, including three who will be taking charge of a program for the first time in their coaching careers. Colorado State will be under the direction of first-year head coach Jim McElwain, who recently completed a four-year stint as the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Alabama. McElwain, a 27-year veteran of the coaching ranks, helped lead Alabama to national championships in two of the previous three seasons. Prior to overseeing the Alabama offense, McElwain served on the staffs of Fresno State (2007), Oakland Raiders (2006), Michigan State (2003-05), Louisville (2000-02), Montana State (1995-99) and Eastern Washington (1985-94). Bob Davie, who had worked as a college football analyst for ABC and ESPN since 2002, returns to the sideline at New Mexico. Prior to his television career, Davie served as defensive coordinator at Notre Dame for three years (1994-96) before taking over the program from 1997-2001. Davie went 35-25 during his five years as the Fighting Irish's head coach, leading Notre Dame to three bowl games, including the program's first-ever BCS bowl (2001 Fiesta Bowl).
Two of the MW's three incoming members will also be under the guidance of first-year head coaches in Fresno State's Tim DeRuyter and Hawai`i's Norm Chow. DeRuyter comes to Fresno State with 22 years of experience, including 16 seasons as a defensive coordinator. He takes over the Bulldogs after serving the past two seasons as the assistant head coach/defensive coordinator at Texas A&M. Before coaching the Aggie defense, DeRuyter spent three years as the defensive coordinator and safeties coach at his alma mater, the Air Force Academy, and from 2005-06 was the co-defensive coordinator at Nevada.
Chow brings 39 years of coaching experience to Hawai`i. Among his 36 years at the collegiate level, Chow spent 27 seasons at BYU, four at USC, three at UCLA, one at North Carolina State and one at his alma mater, Utah. He also spent three years at the professional level as offensive coordinator for the Tennessee Titans.
FIRST-YEAR COACHES IN THE MOUNTAIN WEST
The Mountain West has welcomed 16 new head coaches over the last 13 seasons. Former BYU head coach Gary Crowton posted the most wins and highest win percentage among the group with 12 victories and an .860 win percentage in his inaugural year in 2001. Seven of the 16 participated in a bowl game their first season, with Dave Christensen (2009), Steve Fairchild (2008), Kyle Whittingham (2005) and Urban Meyer (2003) earning victories in their debuts.
|Year||Name, Team||Record||Pct.||Bowl Game|
|2001||Gary Crowton, BYU||12-2||.860||Liberty|
|2003||Urban Meyer, Utah||10-2||.830||Liberty|
|2007||Troy Calhoun, Air Force||9-4||.692||Armed Forces|
|2005||Kyle Whittingham, Utah||7-5||.583||Emerald|
|2009||Dave Christensen, Wyoming||7-6||.539||New Mexico|
|2008||Steve Fairchild, Colorado State||7-6||.539||New Mexico|
|2005||Bronco Mendenhall, BYU||6-6||.500||Las Vegas|
|2009||Brady Hoke, San Diego State||4-8||.333||-|
|2003||Joe Glenn, Wyoming||4-8||.333||-|
|2002||Tom Craft, San Diego State||4-9||.310||-|
|1999||John Robinson, UNLV||3-8||.270||-|
|2006||Chuck Long, San Diego State||3-9||.250||-|
|2005||Mike Sanford, UNLV||2-9||.182||-|
|2000||Vic Koenning, Wyoming||1-10||.090||-|
|2009||Michael Locksley, New Mexico||1-11||.083||-|
|2010||Bobby Hauck, UNLV||2-11||.154||-|