Mountain West Football Press Release - Bowl Edition
Dec. 11, 2012
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|Mountain West Bowl Schedule|
|Gildan New Mexico Bowl
Nevada vs. Arizona
Sat., Dec. 15 - 11 a.m. MT
ESPN | WatchESPN | NEV Radio
ESPN Radio | SIRIUS / XM 84
Series: Tied 1-1-1
Last meeting: Oct. 11, 1941: ARIZ 26-7
|San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl
San Diego State vs. BYU
Thur., Dec. 20 - 5 p.m. PT
San Diego, Calif.
ESPN | WatchESPN | SDSU Radio
ESPN Radio | SIRIUS / XM 84
Series: BYU leads 27-7-1
Last meeting: Oct. 9, 2010: BYU 24-21
|MAACO Bowl Las Vegas
No. 15/20 Boise State vs. Washington
Sat., Dec. 22 - 12:30 p.m. PT
Sam Boyd Stadium
Las Vegas, Nev.
ESPN | WatchESPN | BSU Radio
Series: Washington leads 1-0
Last meeting: Sept. 8, 2007: UW 24-10
|Sheraton Hawai`i Bowl
Fresno State vs. SMU
Mon., Dec. 24 - 3 p.m. HT
Hawaiian Airlines Field at Aloha Stadium
ESPN | WatchESPN | FS Radio
ESPN Radio | SIRIUS / XM 84
Series: Fresno State leads 5-1
Last meeting: Oct. 30, 2004: FS 42-0
|Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl
Air Force vs. Rice
Sat., Dec. 29 - 10:45 a.m. CT
Amon G. Carter Stadium
Fort Worth, Texas
ESPN | WatchESPN | AFA Radio
ESPN Radio | SIRIUS / XM 84
Series: Air Force leads 5-1
Last meeting: Nov. 21, 1998: AFA 22-16
MOUNTAIN WEST BOWL NOTES
For the sixth consecutive year, the Mountain West will send five teams into postseason bowl games. The Mountain West has earned 56 bowl bids since 1999 and holds a 31-20 (.608) all-time record in those contests, including a 12-3 (.800) mark against BCS automatic-qualifying conferences since 2004. Over the last eight seasons, the Mountain West has captured the Bowl Challenge Cup four times and owns the best win percentage in bowl games among the 11 FBS conferences with a 24-12 mark (.667). The Mountain West is the only conference to win the trophy four times since the award's inception in 2002-03.
Boise State (10-2), Fresno State (9-3), San Diego State (9-3), Nevada (7-5) and Air Force (6-6) are all bowl-eligible, marking the eighth year in a row, and ninth overall, the MW has boasted five bowl-eligible teams.
Each MW bowl team has faced its opponent at least once previously, but never before in the postseason. Fresno State is making its first appearance in the Hawai`i Bowl but second postseason visit to the islands, after the Bulldogs fell to Utah, 41-30, in the 1993 Aloha Bowl. San Diego State (San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl) and Nevada (Gildan New Mexico Bowl) are returning to their respective bowl games for the second time in each program's history. Boise State will be making its third consecutive appearance in the MAACO Bowl Las Vegas, after notching a 56-24 victory over Arizona State in 2011 and a 26-3 win against Utah in 2010. Air Force will make its fourth trip in six years to the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl (2007-09).
No. 15/20 Boise State (10-2, 7-1), which clinched a share of the 2012 Mountain West Championship, will play Pac-12 opponent Washington (7-5, 5-4) in the MAACO Bowl Las Vegas on Saturday, Dec. 22 at 12:30 p.m. PT on ESPN. The Broncos and Huskies have met just once on the gridiron, with UW capturing a 24-10 victory in Seattle, Wash., on Sept. 8, 2007. BSU is making its 11th-straight bowl trip and 13th appearance overall. The Broncos boast an all-time record of 8-4 in bowl games and currently own a three-game win streak in postseason contests, including a 2-0 mark over opponents from the Pac-12. The Huskies, who will be making their first trip to the MAACO Bowl Las Vegas, have received a bowl berth for the third straight year and 33rd time in program history.
Fresno State (9-3, 7-1), which claimed a share of the MW championship this season, will make its 12th bowl appearance in the last 14 years and 24th overall when it faces SMU (6-6, 5-3) out of Conference USA in the Sheraton Hawai`i Bowl on Monday, Dec. 24, at 3 p.m. HT on ESPN. This will be the seventh meeting between Fresno State and SMU, with the last coming on Oct. 30, 2004 when the Bulldogs blanked the Mustangs, 42-0. Fresno State is looking for its first bowl victory against a C-USA opponent, as the Bulldogs fell to Tulsa, 31-24, in the 2005 Liberty Bowl. SMU is appearing in its fourth straight bowl game and 15th in program history.
Fellow MW tri-champion San Diego State (9-3, 7-1), which is making its eighth overall bowl appearance, will be the Mountain West's representative in the San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl. It will be the 36th tilt between the Aztecs and their opponent, BYU, but the first time the squads have met in the postseason. The Cougars, who are making their eighth straight bowl appearance and 31st in school history, lead the all-time series 27-7-1. SDSU is participating in its third consecutive bowl game for the first time in school history. The San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl will be played at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, Calif., on Thursday, Dec. 20. Kickoff is scheduled for 5 p.m. PT and the game will be televised on ESPN.
Nevada (7-5, 4-4) will represent the league in the Gildan New Mexico Bowl, where the Wolf Pack will face Arizona (7-5, 4-5) out of the Pac-12. The two teams have met only three times before, with the last meeting coming on Oct. 11, 1941 when the Wildcats defeated Nevada, 26-7. The series is tied 1-1-1. The Wolf Pack, which will make its eighth-straight bowl appearance, will compete against a Pac-12 opponent in the postseason for the first time. Arizona has advanced to the postseason for the fourth time in five seasons and 17th overall. The 2012 Gildan New Mexico Bowl will kick off the postseason at University Stadium in Albuquerque, N.M., on Saturday, Dec. 15, at 11 a.m. MT on ESPN.
Air Force (6-6, 5-3) accepted a bid to play in the 2012 Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl and will play Rice (6-6, 4-4) out of Conference USA. The Falcons, who will be making a school-record sixth-straight postseason appearance, enter their 23rd overall bowl appearance with a 5-1 series advantage over the Owls. The Falcons are also 1-1 in bowl games vs. C-USA teams after splitting the 2008 and 2009 Armed Forces Bowls with Houston. Rice is making its first bowl appearance since 2008 and its 10th bowl trip overall. The Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl takes place on Saturday, Dec. 29, at Amon G. Carter Stadium in Fort Worth, Texas, and will air at 10:45 a.m. CT on ESPN.
MW COACHES IN BOWL GAMES
Nevada's Chris Ault has guided the Wolf Pack to a program-record eight straight bowl appearances and 10 overall. The Hall of Fame head coach has posted a 2-7 bowl record, including victories over Central Florida in the 2005 Sheraton Hawai`i Bowl and Boston College in the 2010 Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl. Boise State's Chris Petersen has led Boise State to a bowl game in each of his first seven years at the helm of the Broncos. Petersen is 4-2 in bowl games with wins over Oklahoma in the 2007 Fiesta Bowl, TCU in the 2010 Fiesta Bowl, Utah in the 2010 MAACO Bowl Las Vegas and Arizona State in the 2011 MAACO Bowl Las Vegas. Air Force's Troy Calhoun is 2-3 in bowl games, including a 47-20 victory over Houston in the 2009 Armed Forces Bowl and a 14-7 win against Georgia Tech in the 2010 Independence Bowl. He is the first coach in Academy history to take his team to a postseason bowl game in each of his first six years. San Diego State's Rocky Long will be making his second straight bowl appearance in his second season at the helm of the Aztecs. Long had previously led New Mexico to five bowl game appearances in his final seven seasons as the Lobos' head coach. Fresno State's Tim DeRuyter will be guiding the Bulldogs to the postseason in his inaugural season. DeRuyter served as the interim head coach for Texas A&M in the 2011 Meineke Car Care Bowl of Texas, leading the Aggies to a 33-22 victory over Northwestern.
Over the last 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).
|Conference||Bowl Record (since 2004)||Pct.|
BRONCOS, BULLDOGS AND AZTECS CLAIM SHARES OF MW CROWN
Boise State (7-1), Fresno State (7-1) and San Diego State (7-1) each claimed a share of the 2012 Mountain West championship. In its inaugural season as a MW member, Fresno State captured the title under first-year head coach Tim DeRuyter. It is the Bulldogs' first conference championship since 1999. Boise State and San Diego State each secured their program's first-ever MW football championship. It is the Aztecs' first league crown since 1998, while the Broncos earned their fourth conference title in five years.
There has only been one previous season in which multiple champions were crowned in the Mountain West. In the league's inaugural season of 1999, BYU, Colorado State and Utah shared the Conference crown with identical 5-2 records in MW play.
The 2012 season marks the first time in nine years that the Mountain West champion has at least one Conference loss. The last time an MW champion did not go undefeated through the league slate came in 2003, when Utah captured the title with a 6-1 mark.
A LOOK INSIDE THE FINAL BCS STANDINGS
Boise State completed the regular season ranked No. 19 in the final 2012 BCS Standings, marking the first time since 2007 that the Mountain West did not have multiple teams included in the final BCS Standings. The MW has been represented by at least one team in the final BCS Standings in each of the last 10 years (2003-2012).
Boise State has been ranked in 43 of the last 45 BCS Standings. A team from the Mountain West has been included in 41 of the last 43 BCS Standings, dating back to Nov. 18, 2007.
BSU is ranked higher than automatic-qualifier Louisville (Big East). The Broncos are the only team in the FBS to be included in the final BCS Standings in each of the past seven seasons, all under head coach Chris Petersen.
BRONCOS CONTINUE TO CLIMB IN TOP 25 POLLS
Boise State earned 569 points in the Dec. 2 edition of the USA Today/Coaches' Top 25 to garner the No. 15 position. The Broncos have been ranked in 72 of the previous 76 Coaches' polls. BSU also received 1,058 votes in the Harris Interactive Poll to rank No. 15, while placing 20 in the Associated Press Top 25. Fresno State and San Diego State are also earning votes from the Coaches' panel, Harris voters and AP rankings.
SEVEN 1,000-YARD RUSHERS FOR FIRST TIME IN MW HISTORY
For the first time in Conference history, seven Mountain West running backs have eclipsed the 1,000-yard rushing mark, including Nevada's Stefphon Jefferson (1,703), New Mexico's Kasey Carrier (1,469), Fresno State's Robbie Rouse (1,468), San Diego State's Adam Muema (1,355), UNLV's Tim Cornett (1,232), Air Force's Cody Getz (1,213) and Boise State's D.J. Harper (1,065). The seven 1,000-yard rushers breaks the previous MW single-season record of five, which was set in 2001 (BYU's Luke Staley, San Diego State's Larry Ned, Utah's Dameon Hunter, Air Force's Keith Boyea and UNLV's Joe Haro). Nevada QB Cody Fajardo could join the group of 1,000-yard rushers after postseason play, as the sophomore signal caller has racked up 981 yards on the ground.
TAKING IT TO THE HOUSE
The Mountain West has recorded a league-record 20 interception return touchdowns on the year. The previous high of 17 pick sixes was set during the 2006 campaign. Five MW teams, including Fresno State (6), Colorado State (3), San Diego State (3), Boise State (2) and New Mexico (2), are included in the group of 41 FBS teams that have recorded multiple interception return touchdowns in 2012. The Mountain West is one of five FBS conferences (SEC, C-USA, Big 12, Big Ten), to have at least five teams with multiple INT return TDs.
BULLDOGS ARE PICK OF THE LITTER
Fresno State has 20 total interceptions in its inaugural campaign as a MW member, including a program-record six interception returns for touchdowns in 2012. The Bulldogs lead the MW and are tied for fourth nationally in total interceptions. Their six interception return TDs tie Hawai`i Bowl opponent SMU for the most by any FBS team this season and tie the Mountain West's single-season record, originally set by Utah in 2006.
Phillip Thomas, the Mountain West's Defensive Player of the Year, leads the MW and nation with eight total interceptions, establishing a new MW record for the most in a single season. The previous record of seven picks was shared by UNLV's Kevin Thomas (2001), Utah's Eric Weddle (2006), Air Force's Anthony Wright (2009) and San Diego State's Larry Parker (2011). Thomas, also has three pick sixes to lead all FBS players and tie the MW single-season record of three (UNLV's Kevin Thomas in 2001 and Utah's Andre Dyson in 2000).
Fresno State's 20 interceptions this season tie with Air Force (2009) as the third-most in a single season in MW history. The 2005 TCU squad holds the all-time record with 24, followed by BYU (21 in 2001). The Bulldogs' 324 interception return yards in 2012 rank fourth on the league's single-season chart. UNLV holds the record with 352 INT return yards in 2001, followed by Utah (335 in 2008) and BYU (329 in 2001).
PHILLIP THOMAS BECOMES MW'S 12TH CONSENSUS ALL-AMERICAN
With first-team All-America selections from the AFCA, Associated Press, Sporting News and the Walter Camp Football Foundation, Fresno State's Phillip Thomas has been named to at least four of the five organizations used in determining unanimous All-America status. He has already become the second consensus All-American in school history, joining quarterback Jackie Fellows (1942). This is the 12th time a Mountain West player has become a consensus All-American, including each of the last seven seasons (2006-12).
The one All-America team yet to be released is from Football Writers Association of America. Its announcement will come Friday, Dec. 14 at 7 a.m. PT on SiriusXM's College Sports Nation (Ch. 91). If Thomas is named to the FWAA first-team, he will become the first unanimous All-American in school history and the third in MW history, joining the likes of TCU defensive end Jerry Hughes (2009) and New Mexico linebacker Brian Urlacher (1999).
Thomas has also received first-team All-American status from CBSSports.com, ESPN.com and SI.com.
TRIO OF MW QUARTERBACKS RANK IN TOP 20 FOR TOTAL OFFENSE
The Mountain West is one of four leagues (Big 12, SEC, WAC) in the FBS with at least three players on the NCAA's top 20 list for total offense. Nevada sophomore QB Cody Fajardo ranks 11th nationally, averaging 319.18 total yards per game, including 230.0 passing yards and 89.2 rushing yards. Fresno State junior QB Derek Carr is averaging 315.33 total yards per game, including 311.8 passing yards and 3.5 rushing yards, to rank 12th. Wyoming sophomore Brett Smith ranks 16th with an average of 308.50 total yards per game, including 283.7 passing yards and 24.8 rushing yards.
FAJARDO, SMITH HIT 3,000-YARD MARK IN TOTAL YARDAGE
Nevada's Cody Fajardo and Wyoming's Brett Smith are two of six sophomore signal callers in MW history to register at least 3,000 yards of total offense in a single season. Below is a list of the top six:
|MOST TOTAL YARDS OFFENSE BY A SOPHOMORE QUARTERBACK|
|Rk.||Player, Team||Total Yards||Season|
|1.||Max Hall, BYU||3,862||2007|
|2.||Cody Fajardo, Nevada||3,458||2012|
|3.||Brian Johnson, Utah||3,370||2005|
|4.||Casey Bramlet, Wyoming||3,088||2001|
|5.||Brett Smith, Wyoming||3,085||2012|
|6.||Kevin O'Connell, QB, San Diego State||3,065||2005|
FRESNO STATE'S CARR ETCHES NAME INTO MW RECORD BOOK
Fresno State junior quarterback Derek Carr completed 28-of-32 passes for 452 yards and four touchdowns against Air Force on Nov. 24, marking his third 400-yard passing performance of the 2012 campaign. He also passed for 536 yards vs. San Diego State on Sept. 29 and 416 yards at New Mexico on Oct. 27. His three 400-yard performances surpass the previous MW record of two, shared by BYU's John Beck (2006), San Diego State's Adam Hall (2002) and BYU's Kevin Feterik (1999). Carr is also tied with Beck for second place on the league's career chart. San Diego State's Ryan Lindley holds the record with four 400-yard passing games from 2008-11.
Carr, who was voted the MW Offensive Player of the Year, established single-season Conference records for MW-only games in the following categories:
- Most Total Offense Yards: 2,716 (preview record: 2,538, BYU's John Beck in 2006)
- Most Passing Attempts: 319 (previous record: 315, BYU's John Beck in 2005)
- Most Pass Completions: 219 (previous record: 203, BYU's John Beck in 2005)
- Most Passing Yards: 2,679 (previous record: 2,538, BYU's John Beck in 2005)
- Most Passing Touchdowns: 27 (previous record: 24, shared by Boise State's Kellen Moore (2011) and BYU's John Beck (2006)
Carr leads the Mountain West and ranks eighth nationally in passing yards per game (311.80), while holding a 160.6 pass efficiency rating to rank ninth among all FBS quarterbacks. His 36 passing TDs trail only Boise State's Kellen Moore for the most by a MW player in a single season. Moore connected on a league-record 43 touchdown passes in 2011.
After finishing his sophomore season in 2011 with 3,544 passing yards, Carr joins Trent Dilfer (1992, 1993) as the second Bulldog QB to throw for over 3,000 yards twice in a career. Carr has 7,398 career passing yards, becoming the sixth quarterback at Fresno State to eclipse the 7,000-yard mark.
3,000 PASSING YARDS/1,000 RUSHING YARDS
Fresno State junior QB Derek Carr and senior RB Robbie Rouse became the 11th MW tandem to combine for 3,000 passing and 1,000 rushing yards in a single season in league history. Carr has thrown for 3,742 yards, becoming the 19th quarterback in MW history to pass for 3,000 yards in a single season. Rouse, the Bulldogs' all-time leading rusher, has amassed 1,468 yards on the ground this year. Below is a look at the teammates who have reached the 3,000 passing/1,000 rushing yards single-season milestone over the 14-year history of the Mountain West:
|2012||Derek Carr/Robbie Rouse, Fresno State||3,742/1,468||5,210|
|2011||Kellen Moore/Doug Martin, Boise State||3,194/1,039||4,233|
|2010||Ryan Lindley/Ronnie Hillman, San Diego State||3,554/1,304||4,858|
|2009||Max Hall/Harvey Unga, BYU||3,368/1,016||4,384|
|2008||Max Hall/Harvey Unga, BYU||3,629/1,061||4,690|
|2007||Max Hall/Harvey Unga, BYU||3,848/1,227||5,075|
|2007||Donovan Porterie/Rodney Ferguson, New Mexico||3,006/1,177||4,183|
|2006||John Beck/Curtis Brown, BYU||3,885/1,010||5,895|
|2005||John Beck/Curtis Brown, BYU||3,709/1,123||4,822|
|2005||Justin Holland/Kyle Bell, Colorado State||3,185/1,288||4,473|
|2001||Brandon Doman/Luke Staley, BYU||3,542/1,582||5,124|
3,000 PASSING/1,000 RECEIVING/1,000 RUSHING YARDS
With this season's performances by Derek Carr, Davante Adams and Robbie Rouse, Fresno State becomes the fourth MW team to combine for a 3,000-passer, 1,000-yard receiver and 1,000-yard rusher in a single season. Below is a look at the teammates who have reached this particular milestone over the 14-year history of the Mountain West:
|2012||Fresno State||Derek Carr, QB
Davante Adams, WR
Robbie Rouse, RB
|2010||San Diego State||Ryan Lindley, QB
Vincent Brown, WR
DeMarco Sampson, WR
Ronnie Hillman, RB
|2008||BYU||Max Hall, QB
Austin Collie, WR
Dennis Pitta, TE
Harvey Unga, RB
|2007||New Mexico||Donovan Porterie, QB
Travis Brown, WR
Marcus Smith, WR
Rodney Ferguson, RB
MOUNTAIN WEST ON THE RUN
The Mountain West is one of two FBS leagues (Big Ten) with multiple teams in the top 10 nationally for rushing offense, and is the only conference to tout three of the top 10 rushing programs this season. Air Force ranks second with 328.75 rushing yards per game, followed by New Mexico with 301.31 (fifth) and Nevada with 260.00 (seventh) rushing yards, respectively.
Five Mountain West players rank among the top 20 of the nation's leading rushers, including three in the top 15. The group is led by Nevada's Stefphon Jefferson, who ranks second on the NCAA's rushing chart this year with 141.92 yards per game. New Mexico's Kasey Carrier has a 122.42 average to rank 12th nationally, while Fresno State's Robbie Rouse averages 122.33 rushing yards per game to rank 13th. San Diego State's Adam Muema ranks 16th nationally with 112.92 yards per game, while Air Force's Cody Getz is 20th at 110.27 rushing yards per game. The Mountain West is one the only conference in the FBS with five of the nation's top 20 rushers in 2012.
Seven MW players have recorded at least five 100-yard rushing games in 2012, including Fresno State's Rouse (9), Nevada's Jefferson (9), UNLV's Tim Cornett (8), New Mexico's Carrier (7), Air Force's Getz (6), Boise State's D.J. Harper (6) and San Diego State's Muema (6). It marks the first time in league history that seven players have topped the century mark in rushing yardage in at least five games in a single season. Rouse and Jefferson are two of six MW players ever to amass nine 100-yard rushing games in a single season, tying the league record shared by BYU's Luke Staley (2001), Colorado State's Cecil Sapp (2002), New Mexico's DonTrell Moore (2003) and San Diego State's Ronnie Hillman (2011). This marks the first time in MW history that two players have recorded nine 100-yard rushing games in the same season.
FRESNO STATE'S ROUSE IN SELECT COMPANY
Fresno State senior RB Robbie Rouse has 4,625 career rushing yards, which is the third-highest among active players in the FBS. He is one of three active players in the FBS (Wisconsin's Montee Ball, Temple's Montel Harris) to reach the 4,600-yard benchmark.
|NCAA ACTIVE CAREER RUSHING LEADERS|
|Rk.||Player, Cl., Team||Yards||Career 100-Yard Games|
|1.||Montee Ball, Sr., Wisconsin||5,040||25|
|2.||Montel Harris, Sr., Temple*||4,789||27|
|3.||Robbie Rouse, Sr., Fresno State||4,625||21|
|4.||Denard Robinson, Sr., Michigan||4,395||19|
|5.||Johnathan Franklin, Sr., UCLA||4,369||18|
|6.||Stepfan Taylor, Sr., Stanford||4,212||20|
|7.||Zach Line, Sr., SMU||4,114||21|
|*Harris' rushing yardage is from his four seasons at Boston College (2008-11). He received a medical redshirt in 2011 and transferred to Temple over the summer.|
Rouse has recorded 37 career rushing touchdowns, which is the second-most in school history. With a postseason appearance left on Fresno State's schedule, Rouse needs three to become Fresno State's all-time leader in rushing TDs. Former Bulldog Ryan Mathews holds the record, after scoring 39 rushing touchdowns from 2007-09.
With 137 all-purpose yards vs. Air Force on Nov. 24, Rouse moved into fourth place on the league's list for most all-purpose yards by a senior with 1,874. Below is a look at the top five:
|MOST ALL-PURPOSE YARDS BY A SENIOR|
|Rk.||Player, Team||Total Yards||Season|
|1.||Chad Hall, Air Force||2,683||2007|
|2.||Devin Moore, Wyoming||2,008||2008|
|3.||Doug Martin, Boise State||1,892||2011|
|4.||Robbie Rouse, Fresno State||1,874||2012|
|5.||Curtis Brown, BYU||1,864||2006|
Rouse now has 5,390 all-purpose yards in his four years at Fresno State. He joins Bernard Berrian (5,826 from 1999-03) as only the second Bulldog in program history to gain over 5,000 career all-purpose yards.
NEVADA'S JEFFERSON RUSHING UP THE CHARTS
Nevada's Stefphon Jefferson ranks in the top two in several MW single-season rushing lists:
|MOST RUSHING ATTEMPTS IN A SINGLE-SEASON|
|Rk.||Player, Cl., Team||Rushing Attempts||Season|
|1.||Cecil Sapp, Sr., Colorado State||347||2002|
|2.||Stefphon Jefferson, Jr., Nevada||341||2012|
|3.||Ronnie Hillman, So., San Diego State||311||2011|
|Larry Ned, Sr., San Diego State||311||2001|
|5.||Gartrell Johnson, Sr., Colorado State||292||2007|
|MOST RUSHING YARDS IN A SINGLE-SEASON|
|Rk.||Player, Cl., Team||Rushing Yards||Season|
|1.||Ronnie Hillman, So., San Diego State||1,711||2011|
|2.||Stefphon Jefferson, Jr., Nevada||1,703||2012|
|3.||Cecil Sapp, Sr., Colorado State||1,601||2002|
|4.||Luke Staley, Jr., BYU||1,582||2001|
|5.||Larry Ned, Sr., San Diego State||1,549||2001|
|MOST RUSHING TOUCHDOWNS IN A SINGLE-SEASON|
|Rk.||Player, Cl., Team||Rushing TDs||Season|
|1.||Luke Staley, Jr., RB, BYU||24||2001|
|2.||Stefphon Jefferson, Jr., RB, Nevada||22||2012|
|Chance Harridge, Jr., QB, Air Force||22||2002|
|4.||Ronnie Hillman, So., RB, San Diego State||19||2011|
|DonTrell Moore, So., RB, New Mexico||19||2003|
Jefferson's 1,703 rushing yards this season set a new MW junior class record, surpassing BYU's Luke Staley, who rushed for 1,582 yards in 2001. He is one of five players in the FBS this season and one of only two MW players ever, to rush for more than 1,700 yards. Jefferson trails only current record-holder Ronnie Hillman (San Diego State), who rushed for 1,711 yards in 2011. He was the first to reach the 1,000-yard mark nationally, accomplishing the feat in Week 7 and becoming the Wolf Pack's fastest back to reach the 1,000-yard mark since Vai Taua did so in eight games in 2010.
Jefferson also ranks third on the league's all-time list for most all-purpose yardage by a junior. He sits 239 yards shy of the MW junior class record held by BYU's Austin Collie (2,112 yards in 2008):
|MOST ALL-PURPOSE YARDS BY A JUNIOR|
|Rk.||Player, Team||All-Purpose Yards||Season|
|1.||Austin Collie, BYU||2,112||2008|
|2.||Luke Staley, BYU||2,018||2001|
|3.||Stefphon Jefferson, Nevada||1,873||2012|
|4.||Jovon Bouknight, Wyoming||1,680||2004|
|5.||Dominique Dorsey, UNLV||1,638||2004|
SDSU'S MUEMA JOINS AFA'S GETZ WITH MULTIPLE 200-YARD GAMES
San Diego State's Adam Muema became the ninth player in Aztec history to record two 200-yard rushing performances in the same season, after collecting 202 yards on the ground vs. San Jose State on Sept. 22 and a career-high 255 rushing yards at Wyoming on Nov. 24. Muema became the second MW player this season with multiple 200-yard games, joining Air Force's Cody Getz (3). Muema also became the seventh player in league history to record multiple 200-yard rushing games in a single season, joining Getz, San Diego State's Larry Ned (3 in 2001), Colorado State's Chris Nwoke (2 in 2011), San Diego State's Ronnie Hillman (2 in 2010), Air Force's Chad Hall (2 in 2007) and San Diego State's Lynell Hamilton (2 in 2003). This season marks the first time two MW players have rushed for over 200 yards in multiple outings.
FRESNO STATE'S ADAMS GRABBING ATTENTION
Fresno State WR Davante Adams, who garnered MW Freshman of the Year honors, leads the Mountain West and ranks first among all freshman in the country in receptions (89), receiving yards (1,168), yards per game (97.3) and touchdown catches (13), while ranking second nationally among all first-year players with 7.42 receptions per game. Adams has established a new MW record for most receiving yards by a freshman and is the first freshman in league history to eclipse the 1,000-yard receiving mark. Below is a look at the MW's all-time freshmen receiving leaders:
|Rk.||Player, Team||Receiving Yards||Season|
|1.||Davante Adams, Fresno State||1,168||2012|
|2.||Ryan Wolfe, UNLV||911||2006|
|3.||Deon Long, New Mexico||809||2011|
|4.||Austin Collie, BYU||771||2004|
|5.||Ryan McGuffey, Wyoming||696||2000|
Adams, who earned Freshman All-American status from CBSSports.com, CollegeFootballNews.com and Sporting News, has collected 13 touchdown receptions in his first collegiate campaign, which ranks as the second-most in school history and the third-most in MW history. Boise State's Tyler Shoemaker holds the MW record with 16 receiving TDs in 2011, followed by BYU's Austin Collie with 15 in 2008. Adams is the seventh Bulldog to catch at least 10 touchdowns in a season and is the first since Jalen Saunders had 12 in the 2011 campaign. The redshirt freshman now has a TD catch in a league-record seven straight games. The previous MW record for longest streak of TD receptions was six, set by Utah's Steve Savoy in 2004.
Ten of Adams' 13 touchdowns came in Conference contests, which ties the MW record shared by BYU's Austin Collie (2008) and Johnny Harline (2006). He has recorded five games with over 100 yards receiving, including a season-high 198-yard performance on nine catches with two touchdowns at New Mexico on Oct. 27.
RETURNS ON INVESTMENT
The Mountain West is one of five FBS conferences (ACC, Big 12, C-USA, Sun Belt) with at least three of the nation's top 25 kickoff returners in 2012. New Mexico's Chase Clayton ranks sixth nationally with 30.40 yards per return, while Hawai`i's Mike Edwards ranks seventh with 30.38 yards per return. San Diego State's Colin Lockett is 23rd with 26.71 yards per return.
The Mountain West has logged seven kickoff return touchdowns in 2012, which is the second-most in a single season since the Conference's inception in 1999. MW teams have combined for at least seven kickoff return touchdowns in back-to-back seasons. Last year, Mountain West players combined for a league-record nine kick return TDs.
Edwards, Lockett and New Mexico's Chase Clayton are three of 10 players in the FBS with multiple kick return TDs on the year, making the Mountain West the only league with three players to have multiple kickoff return TDs. Edwards' three kickoff return touchdowns also established a MW single-season record, eclipsing the previous mark held by Clayton (2012), Lockett (2012), TCU's Greg McCoy (2011) and Cory Rodgers (2005). This year marks the first since the league's inception that three MW players have recorded multiple kickoff return touchdowns in the same season.
ATTACKING THE SACK
Three Mountain West teams rank in the top 15 nationally for fewest sacks allowed, led by Air Force, which is allowing just .50 sacks per game to tie with North Texas for first nationally. Boise State ranks seventh nationally, as the Broncos have allowed an average of 0.75 sacks per game. New Mexico rounds out the group with a 0.92 sacks-allowed average to tie for 11th (Army, Georgia Tech, North Carolina).
FIVE MW TEAMS HAVE 13+ FUMBLE RECOVERIES IN 2012
Five Mountain West teams rank in the top 25 nationally for fumble recoveries, led by Boise State, which has 17 fumble recoveries to rank first nationally. Colorado State, New Mexico and Wyoming are three of 11 teams tied for 13th in the FBS with 14 fumble recoveries apiece on the year, while Fresno State is one of eight teams with 13 fumble recoveries to tie for 24th. The Mountain West is one of three FBS conferences (C-USA, Pac-12) to have five teams with 13 or more fumble recoveries in 2012.
THIRD DOWN'S A CHARM
Three Mountain West teams rank in the top 10 nationally for third-down conversions, led by Nevada, who ranks third in the FBS with a 53.11 success rate (94-of-177). Air Force is ninth in the country, converting on 50.29 percent (88-of-175), and San Diego State ranks 10th with an average of 49.40 (82-of-166). The MW is one of two leagues in the FBS (Big 12) with three of the country's top 10 teams in third-down conversions.
TAKING CARE OF THE BALL
Three Mountain West teams rank in the top 20 nationally in turnover margin, led by Boise State, which ranks fourth with a 1.50 turnover margin. Fresno State is tied with Florida and Mississippi State for fifth in the FBS with a margin of 1.42, while New Mexico is tied with UCF at 16th with a margin of 0.85. The MW and the SEC are the only two FBS conferences with two of the top five teams in turnover margin, as well as at least three teams in the top 20.
DEFENDING THE PASS
Three Mountain West teams rank in the top 15 nationally in pass defense. Boise State and Fresno State lead all MW teams, as the Broncos and Bulldogs are each allowing just 163.42 yards per game to tie for fourth among all FBS teams. Hawai`i ranks 14th nationally at 182.75 yards allowed per game. The MW is one of two leagues (Big Ten) with two of the top five pass defenses in the country, as well as one of three conferences (Big Ten, SEC) with at least three of the top 15 in that category.
The Mountain West is also one of three FBS leagues (SEC, Big Ten) with multiple teams in the top 10 for pass efficiency defense. Fresno State is sixth with a rating of 100.02, while Boise State is seventh at 101.42.
|MW FOOTBALL BY THE NUMBERS|
|3||San Diego State has secured its third consecutive season with at least eight wins. The last time the Aztecs posted eight or more wins in three straight campaigns was a six-year stretch from 1972-77.|
|3||Fresno State has forced at least three turnovers in seven games this season.|
|3||Fresno State's Derek Carr is one of only three quarterbacks in the nation (Louisiana Tech's Colby Cameron and Penn State's Matt McGloin that has thrown for over 3,200 yards and only five interceptions this season.|
|4||With a career-best four rushing touchdowns at Wyoming on Nov. 24, San Diego State's Adam Muema became the third MW player to record at least four rushing touchdowns in a single-game this season, joining Nevada's Stefphon Jefferson (6 at Hawai`i, Sept. 22) and New Mexico's Kasey Carrier (4 vs. Texas State, Oct. 6).|
|5||Boise State has had at least five non-offensive touchdowns in each of the last five seasons.|
|6||Fresno State is one of two teams in the nation (SMU) with six interception return TDs on the year, while Colorado State and San Diego State are tied for sixth nationally (Arizona State, Baylor LSU, Purdue) with three pick sixes apiece.|
|6||Fresno State is the only MW team this season to complete its home slate with an undefeated record. The Bulldogs finished the regular season with a 6-0 mark in home games.|
|7||Fresno State's Robbie Rouse has only lost seven fumbles in the 990 times he has touched the ball in his career (885 rushes, 105 receptions).|
|7||The Mountain West is the only league in the FBS with seven of the nation's top 25 in first-year starters. Hawai`i leads all teams with 31 first-time starters this season, followed by fellow MW member Air Force with 24. Colorado State is tied for eighth nationally with 18 first-time starters, while Wyoming is tied for 17th nationally with 16 first-year starters. Boise State, Nevada and San Diego State each have 15 first-time starters to tie for 21st nationally.|
|9||Boise State's defense has not allowed an opposing offense to score in the first half in nine of its last 10 games. The Broncos have posted first-half shutouts in seven outings this year (vs. BYU, at New Mexico, at Southern Miss, vs. Fresno State, vs. UNLV, vs. Colorado State, at Nevada). Opponents have recorded just 40 first-half points against Boise State this season, an average of 3.33 points per game.|
|9||San Diego State has nine victories on the season, marking the first time the Aztecs have won nine regular-season contests since the 1977 squad posted a 10-1 record.|
|10||Fresno State has tallied at least one interception in 10 consecutive contests, which is the nation's longest active streak.|
|10||Boise State is the only team in the FBS to have 10 or more wins in each of the last seven seasons (2006-12).|
|11||Boise State tied an MW single-season record with 11 fumble recoveries in Conference-only games. Wyoming set the original mark with 11 MW-only fumble recoveries in 2001, with Colorado State and Utah matching it in 2007.|
|13||MW players have recorded 13 fumble recovery TDs this season, establishing a new league record. The previous high of 12 fumble returns for touchdowns was set during the 2003 campaign.|
|17||Boise State lead all FBS teams with 17 fumble recoveries on the year.|
|18||Nevada's Stefphon Jefferson set a new MW single-season record for most touchdowns scored in Conference-only games with 18. The previous record of 17 was held by BYU's Luke Staley (2001).|
|18||Colorado State and Fresno State are two of four teams in the FBS (Marshall, Texas) to have at least 18 different players score touchdowns in 2012.|
|22||Nevada's Stefphon Jefferson has 22 rushing TDs in 2012, which ties Air Force's Chance Harridge (2002) for the second-most in a single season in MW history. BYU's Luke Staley holds the MW record for must rushing TDs in a season with 24.|
|33||Mountain West teams have combined for a single-season record 33 defensive touchdowns in 2012, including 20 interception returns and 13 fumble recoveries.|
|337||Nevada is second on the MW single-season list for most overall first downs (337), trailing the 2001 BYU squad that registered 351 first downs. The Wolf Pack also tied the MW record for most first downs in Conference-only games with 212 (BYU, 2005).|
|1,469||With 59 rushing yards at Colorado State on Nov. 24, New Mexico's Kasey Carrier brought his season total to 1,469 yards on the ground for sole possession of the Lobos' single-season rushing record. DonTrell Moore held UNM's previous best mark after rushing for 1,450 yards in 2003.|
|2,716||Fresno State's Derek Carr set the MW single-season record for most yards of total offense in Conference-only games with 2,716 yards. The previous record of 2,538 yards was held by BYU's John Beck (2006).|
|4,237||With 133 passing yards at New Mexico on Nov. 17, Nevada sophomore QB Cody Fajardo went over the 4,000-yard mark in career passing yards. He has amassed 4,237 passing yards in less than two seasons for the Wolf Pack.|