Early Look At Mountain West Football
Who will be contending next year?
2019 football can’t get here fast enough
We don’t have the Mountain West conference odds from top sites like Bovada, just yet. But a couple of teams are on the boards to win the National Championship, albeit super long-shots. Utah State and Boise State are both at +12500.
So what is going on in the Mountain West? Let’s have a look at a few key happenings in the conference … way too early, to try to get our thumb on the 2019 season.
What’s Going on in New Mexico?
We have to wonder what team meetings are going to be like after announcing a new defensive coordinator. Jordan Peterson was promoted past Kevin Cosgrove.
So, the former safeties coach will take over the defensive coordinator spot, but instead of firing Kevin Cosgrove, they are keeping him on as the linebacker coach. However, Cosgrove elected to move on to take a job with LSU.
You did well enough for us to keep you, just not well enough over the last five years to maintain your position. At first glance, this seems acceptable. But when you really think about it, it has to make for some strange dynamics. We know the Lobos defense wasn’t great, but now, a Bob Davie decision like this will put it under the microscope all season.
All in all … what is Bob Davie thinking? Why not make this move right after the season ended instead of right after signing day. There would have been more opportunities to find someone worthy to take over the position (not saying that Peterson isn’t worthy), but the timing is definitely strange and the decision questionable.
On top of this, the Lobos had a horrible recruiting class. Their pass defense was horrible, and they are moving the safety coach to DC? Basically, they don’t have an identity at the moment. The one thing they do have going for them is the fact that the bulk of the Oline is returning.
Boise State, Utah State, and Colorado State Recruiting
It isn’t hard to see why the Boise State Broncos are ranked No. 1 in the Mountain West. with 14 3-star and 3 4-star recruits, they have bolstered their team magnificently. The Colorado State Rams didn’t get any 4-star guys, but they did snag 18 3-star players.
We should expect the Broncos to maintain their dominance of the conference, but the Colorado Rams could very well build upon their 3-9 season and actually be competitive in the Mountain Division. The Aggies were 7-1 in conference last season, and with their solid recruiting (20 3-stars), they should keep the pressure on the Broncos in 2019.
Over in the West
Nevada did lose a few players this offseason to transfer like wide receiver McLane Mannix and defensive back Nephi Sewell. Food for thought: why does Nevada seem consistently lose key players, especially on the defensive side of the ball? Some are predicting that the Pack will finish in the middle of the West, but we shouldn’t be surprised to see them fall down the ranks a bit more and compete for the bottom two.
Further west, Fresno State finished 12-2 (7-1 in conference) but can the San Diego Aztecs swap spots and stand as kings of the hill out in the West? They now boast a veteran Qb in Ryan Agnew and he has Juwan Washington and Chase Jasmin with him in the backfield.
They did lose the bulk of their defensive front but, eight of San Diego State’s top tacklers are returning (particularly in the middle and at secondary). If the Aztecs can figure out a way to score regularly, their strong secondary could help lead them to the top of the division.
The Mountain West has five bowl games coming their way in 2019 season:
- Famous Idaho Potato Bowl vs. A MAC Team
- Gildan New Mexico Bowl vs. Conference USA Team
- Hawai’i Bowl vs. BYU or American Team
- NOVA Home Loans Arizona Bowl vs. Sun Belt Team
- Cheez-It Bowl Conditional for Mountain West.
Likely bowl participants will be San Diego State, Utah State, Boise State, and Fresno State. Can Nevada sneak in there?