Here are my Mountain West football power rankings heading into this week’s games, all of which are on Saturday this week.
- Boise State 5-2 overall, 3-0 MW): Remains atop of the rankings after a workman-like 24-14 home win over Wyoming. Boise State’s defense has been impressive the last two weeks, and the offense could be picking up some momentum with its two-headed quarterback monster.
2. Colorado State (6-2, 4-0): For the second consecutive week, the Rams won a close game. They’ve won their last two games by a combined five points, but the fact they are still winning holds some clout. Colorado State got beat up defensively against New Mexico, and faces another option offense — and a rivalry game — Saturday at home against Air Force.
3. Fresno State (5-2, 4-0): The Bulldogs dismantled San Diego State on the road last week 27-3. They have a two-game lead in the West Division, and are tied with Colorado State for longest current winning streak in the MW at four. Does first-year coach Jeff Tedford make that much of a difference? Fresno State faces something it hasn’t experienced in a long time — a possible letdown game at home Saturday night against UNLV.
4. Air Force (3-4, 2-2): Back to .500 in league play, and the Falcons have scored 34 or more points in four consecutive games. The defense is still suspect, but Air Force may have found its stride. Perhaps a better gauge will be Saturday at Colorado State.
5. San Diego State (6-2, 2-2): From rolling to reeling. After a 6-0 start and a top 20 national ranking, the Aztecs have lost two straight — at home no less — and were outscored 58-17. Maybe a trip to Hawaii this week will help San Diego State get going again, but the swoon by this team is a head-scratcher.
6. Wyoming (4-3, 2-1): The Cowboys held a fourth-quarter lead at Boise State, but lost by 10. The defense continues to play well, although it allowed Boise State to score touchdowns on three consecutive drives to start the second half. I sound like a broken record here, but the offense has to play better and be more consistent for the Cowboys to win any games moving forward.
7. Utah State (4-4, 2-2): A 1-2 home stand looked to have the Aggies in a funk it couldn’t snap out of. But a road game at UNLV did the trick as Utah State scored 52 points and looks to have found its quarterback of the future — and maybe the rest of this season — in redshirt freshman Jordan Love.
8. New Mexico: (3-4, 1-3): After winning their opener, the Lobos lost two straight, won two straight and now have lost two in a row. New Mexico got beat up defensively in its three-point home loss to Colorado State. The Lobos have shown toughness this season, and it looks to extend their winning streak to four against Wyoming Saturday.
9. Nevada (1-7, 1-3): The Wolf Pack has found its groove offensively, and has lost its last two games by a combined five points. The defense, however, is still is a work in progress. Nevada has this week off before a trip to Boise State.
10. Hawaii (3-4, 1-3): The Rainbow Warriors were off last week so they should be rested and prepared for an angry San Diego State squad. The winner will be in second place in the West Division (insert sarcasm here on how bad the West Division really is).
11. UNLV (2-5, 1-3): If there was a game for the Rebels to bounce back from a 34-30 loss at Air Force where they led 27-0, it was last week at home against Utah State. Instead, UNLV scored 28 points in the first 25 minutes, but lost redshirt freshman quarterback Armani Rogers to a concussion and lost 52-28. The Rebels now get red-hot Fresno State on the road. Good luck with that.
12. San Jose State (1-7, 0-4): The Spartans at one-win Brigham Young Saturday in what might be the pillow fight of the week in terms of college games. But you know what they say: two bad teams often make for a good game.