Mountain West Football Bowl Projections After Week 5
Bowl season is going to be fun for the Mountain West
Seven teams are going bowling?
Summer has come and gone and now we are into pumpkin spice season if that’s your thing, or in football terms, we are nearing the halfway point of the year.
The bowl scenarios are not really all that much closer to being decided but with more games, we get more information on where teams can land. Slowly but surely there is an informational light at the end of the tunnel that shows what bowl games could have open spots.
With the way that New Year’s Six bowl games are structured, there is only one spot for a true at-large team and that is the Cotton Bowl. That is also why the Group of Five team will be in the Cotton Bowl as well. The way these big time games are set up is that the ACC gets a team in the Orange Bowl regardless, Big Ten and Pac-12 get to the Rose Bowl no matter what, Sugar has the same deal with the Big 12 and SEC.
This could snowball into say Clemson making the playoff and a 20th ranked Virginia team goes to the Orange Bowl. This could have a trickle down effect and open up the Cheeze-It Bowl for the Mountain West or for them to have a different opponent. That is the case this week for the Lockheed Martin Bowl which we project to be a contrasting of styles with Air Force taking on Washington State — hey we can dream, right?
The Mountain West bowl teams are the same this week with Boise State, Air Force, Wyoming, Hawaii, San Diego State, Fresno State, and Utah State projected to earn bids this week.
A few notes about the bowl lineups. BYU is going to be in the Hawaii Bowl, if bowl eligible or not in a New Year’s Six game, and will play Hawaii, also if bowl eligible. If BYU is not in the game then it will be an American team. The Warriors have a 13-game schedule and must have seven wins to secure a bowl berth.
There is a new bowl this year and it’s a Power Five opponent from the Big Ten in the Armed Forces Bowl.
Overall, the league has six guaranteed bowl berths and is a backup for the Cheez-It Bowl if the Pac-12 or Big 12 does not have enough teams eligible. As always, there can be trades for the best matchups.
Finally, if the Mountain West is the highest rated team in the College Football Playoff then a New Year’s Six Bowl game is an option at either the Cotton or Orange Bowl.
1. Las Vegas vs. Pac-12
– Famous Idaho Potato Bowl vs. MAC
– Gildan New Mexico Bowl vs. Conference USA
– Hawai’i Bowl vs. BYU or American
– NOVA Home Loans Arizona Bowl vs. Sun Belt
– Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl vs. Big Ten
– Cheez-It Bowl Conditional for MW if bowl can’t fill a spot.