Every 2018 Mountain West Bowl Game, Ranked
Any bowl game is a good bowl game, but some Mountain West bowls are better than others. We rank them all accordingly.
Which ones will be must-see television?
It took a little bit of time for the dust to settle on Sunday afternoon, but the Mountain West Conference landed six teams into bowls. This included a couple of surprises, though it begs the obvious question: Which bowls are best in 2018?
Here’s what I think.
Let’s be honest, the Wolf Pack’s emergence has been fun to watch, but it is a little difficult to get amped up about watching them play against… the fourth-best team in the Sun Belt? The Red Wolves didn’t reach quite the same peak as in years past, so while it should be a solid game between two balanced teams, it doesn’t quite jump off the page compared to some of the Mountain West’s other matchups.
Both of these teams were expected to be title contenders in their respective conferences, but both came up far shorter than their fans might have hoped. While it’s interesting to see that the Aztecs will be going out of their way to face a better-than-you-think Bobcats team, there’s a lingering element of “what might have been” on both sides.
On the bright side, SDSU is almost guaranteed to deliver one last one-score decision. That, in itself, keeps this one out of the cellar.
If you haven’t been among those fans staying up late on Saturday nights to watch this Hawaii team, you’ve missed out. This is also a fun WAC throwback, especially if you remember epic showdowns like their 2007 barnburner.
And if you haven’t gotten to know Jaylon Ferguson, you will want to do so. He might be the single biggest star any Mountain West team will face in bowl season.
The Eagles are kind of like the oatmeal of the ACC, which leaves you a little bit disappointed that the Broncos couldn’t at least get a matchup against, say, Daniel Jones and Duke or a rematch with the Virginia Cavaliers. Boston College is a capable Power 5 foe, however, with a power running game and a defense that should provide a good test for Brett Rypien and company.
2. Mitsubishi Las Vegas Bowl – Fresno State vs. Arizona State
It’s surprising that the powers-that-be passed up on a “Bulldogs vs. Tim DeRuyter” narrative, but the Sun Devils have played to win seven games this year and feature some legitimate NFL talent that will test Fresno State’s strengths. Even without N’Keal Harry, this should be an intriguing chess match between Herm Edwards and Jeff Tedford.
Now, this is more like it. Two of the Group of 5’s top quarterbacks, Jordan Love and Mason Fine, and two of the nation’s top scoring offenses will take the field in Albuquerque. Historically speaking, these two teams have often played each other close, as well. Bet the over, then sit back and enjoy the ride.