Las Vegas Could Add A Second Bowl Game; Will The Mountain West Be Involved?
Mountain West back in Las Vegas?
Two bowl games at new Raiders stadium in Las Vegas?
Maybe the Mountain West is not getting kicked out of Las Vegas permanently for a bowl game. It is not official but the Las Vegas Bowl is looking to upgrade its matchup with the Pac-12 taking on the SEC and kicking out the Mountain West which has been with the bowl for almost two decades.
“I wish there was a clear picture today of where we’re going to land,” Las Vegas Bowl executive director John Saccenti said via the Las Vegas Review-Journal. “No options are off the table.”
The reason no options are off the table is that the new Raiders stadium cost over a billion dollars and it needs to be used more than a 15 or so times a year for UNLV and the Raiders.
The next bowl cycle begin in 2020 and run through 2025, and new rules in place put a limit on the number of bowl teams a conference can align itself with. That number is six within the Mountain West; also for a second bowl game in Las Vegas would need to get approval from the NCAA.
There could be agreements in place come late August.
“I’m hopeful we will have our deals in place by the start of football season,” Saccenti said. “Keep in mind, we’re dealing with a lot of different groups.”
If a second bowl game in Las Vegas gets approved it is very likely the Mountain West will be part of that since the conference which has hosted UNLV has been associated with a bowl game in town.
As for what the game would be there are plenty of options but one great idea would be to get the American champ to play the Mountain West champion on a yearly basis. Yes, playing a Power 5 team would be great but playing a 6-6 or 7-5 team from a Power 5 conference isn’t all that excited.
Playing the American champion would likely mean two teams which are ranked and won at least 10 games, and even if the champ from either league is in a big money game the No. 2 teams are going to still be pretty good.