Final Mountain West Football Bowl Projections
No New Year’s Six Bowl for the Mountain West
Boise State to Las Vegas
The New Year’s Six drought continues for the Mountain West after Memphis narrowly took care of business against Cincinatti in the AAC title claim and will be going to the Cotton Bowl over Boise State.
There is no debate between the Broncos and Bearcats had the former was victorious.
Now, we go forward and make one final prediction for the Mountain West bowl games. The big intrigue is the Las Vegas Bowl. It will be Boise State but the opponent is very much up in the air. The Broncos would like to see Utah not go to the Cotton Bowl so that the bowl teams do not move up a peg which would feature teams with worse records.
The most ideal matchup would pit Boise State vs. a 7-5 Washington team with former Broncos head coach Chris Petersen in his last game as the Huskies head coach. If the Utes do go to the Cotton Bowl then a 6-6 team like Cal could be in the Las Vegas Bowl. Playing former Broncos assistant Justin Wilcox would be nice but a game vs. Coach Pete would be more fun.
ESPN can step in and make some bowl trades similarly to what they did a few years ago to have a solid San Diego State vs. Houston matchup in the Las Vegas Bowl.
A few notes about the bowl lineups. Starting with the Hawaii Bowl. The game has a vaguely worded tie-in which is a combination between BYU, Hawaii or an AAC team. The Warriors have a 13-game schedule and must have seven wins to secure a bowl berth. Technically, BYU takes the Mountain West spot but a Cougars vs. Warriors matchup would be a classic WAC rivalry renewal.
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 the Cotton 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.