Christensen talks about confidence

Wyoming football coach Dave Christensen was asked how his team’s confidence is Monday after it lost its fourth straight game, 48-7, last Saturday night at Boise State.

It’s probably not very high,” Christensen said. “Anytime you have struggles it’s not going to be where you want it. But we going to keep working hard, prepare and try to come up with some answers. We have another game on Saturday, you can’t sit there and feel sorry for yourself.”

Here is Wyoming's uniform combination for its home finale Saturday against Hawaii. Photo by Robert Gagliardi/WyoSports

Here is Wyoming’s uniform combination for its home finale Saturday against Hawaii. Photo by Robert Gagliardi/WyoSports

UW’s top goal, and really its only goal left this season is to get bowl eligible. At 4-6 overall and 2-4 in the Mountain West, UW needs to beat 0-10 Hawaii at home Saturday and win at 6-4 Utah State next week.

The Cowboys first need to worry about beating a Hawaii team, that despite being winless has lost four of its game by one score. Christensen said the Rainbow Warriors are big on defense, and there are some weapons on offense, in particular junior running back Joey Iosefa, a 6-foot, 240-pound bruiser, who had 150 yards and a touchdown in Hawaii’s 28-21 overtime loss to San Diego State at home last Saturday, and senior receiver and return specialist Chris Gant.

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Final MW football power rankings

WyoSports senior editor Robert Gagliardi gives his final power rankings for Mountain West football in 2012:

1. Fresno State (9-3 overall, 7-1 MW): As stated numerous times this season, this is the most complete team in the conference. That was evident in the all-conference selections as junior quarterback David Carr was the Offensive Player of the Year, senior safety Phillip Tomas was the Defensive Player of the Year and receiver Davante Adams was the Freshman of the Year. In all, the team had a league-high first team all-conference players. The Bulldogs were the highest scoring team in the MW (40.2 ppg), was second in scoring defense (22.2 ppg) and intercepted the most passes (20). Despite a 10-point loss at Boise State, the nod goes to the Bulldogs as the top team in the league this year.

2. Boise State (10-2, 7-1): Head-to-head play doesn’t mean much in these rankings (you can weigh in on that if you want) because San Diego State won at Boise State this season. The Broncos have been nationally ranked all season. Their strength was on defense as they finished in the top 10 nationally in scoring defense (14.9 ppg), total defense (304.7 ypg) and in turnover margin (+18). The offense was OK, and improved as the season went on.

3. San Diego State (9-3, 7-1): Not a lot of separation with these first three teams. The Aztecs won their final seven games of the season, and did it mostly with a powerful run game. What’s even more impressive is San Diego State did a lot of its work with sophomore backup quarterback Adam Dingwell after senior starter Ryan Katz suffered a season-ending leg injury in the eighth game. Coach Rocky Long’s 3-3-5 defense improved as the season went on, thanks in large part to the play up front. That enabled Long to be named the MW Coach of the Year.

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MW football power ratings

WyoSports senior editor Robert Gagliardi rates all 10 Mountain West football and why.

1. Fresno State (8-3 overall, 6-1 MW): The Bulldogs remain at the top and end the regular season with a home game with Air Force Saturday. As stated before, this is the most complete team on both sides of the ball in the conference this season — and the most athletic from top to bottom.

2. San Diego State (8-3, 6-1): Has the longest winning streak in the MW at six, and like Fresno State was off last week. After a 2-3 start the biggest turnaround for the Aztecs has been the play of both their offensive and defensive lines. San Diego State has not won a conference title since 1998, when it won the Pacific Division title in the WAC.

3. Boise State (8-3, 6-1): The Broncos are still ranked in most polls, but I can’t put them ahead of San Diego State based on their home loss to the Aztecs a few weeks ago. Boise State has allowed a league-low 158 points. The next lowest is 252 by Fresno State. Both of its losses were by a combined six points. This is still a very good team, despite where it is in these rankings.

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MW football power rankings

WyoSports senior editor Robert Gagliardi rates all 10 Mountain West football and why. Look for his ratings on a weekly basis as the season continues.

1. Fresno State (8-3 overall, 6-1 MW): Remains a solid No. 1 this week after a 52-36 win at Nevada last week. Junior quarterback Derek Carr leads the league with 3,290 yards and 32 touchdowns. The defense has recorded at least one interception in nine straight games, and has forced the most turnovers in the league (30).

2. San Diego State (8-3, 6-1): The Aztecs remain ahead of Boise State this week based on their win in Boise and their impressive 28-9 home win over Air Force last week. Coach Rocky Long’s defense continues to improve, especially up front. San Diego State is off this week and ends the regular season at Wyoming next week.

3. Boise State (8-2, 5-1): The Broncos are still the only ranked team in the conference, and there’s not a big difference between the top three teams in the conference. The regular-season finale at Nevada could be tricky. Special teams and a lack of offensive production has the Broncos down a notch or two from the past.

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Movement in this week’s MW football power rankings

WyoSports senior editor Robert Gagliardi rates all 10 Mountain West football and why. Look for his ratings on a weekly basis as the season continues.

1. Fresno State (7-3 overall, 5-1 MW): The Bulldogs move to the top, more than anything, because of Boise State’s 21-19 home loss to San Diego State last week. Fresno State remains the most complete team in the league. Its 42-25 road loss at No. 4 Oregon in the second week of the season says a lot of how good this team is.

2. San Diego State (7-3, 5-1): The hottest team in the conference right now with five straight wins, but none bigger than winning at Boise State last week. Coach Rocky Long’s 3-3-5 defense is still tough to figure out. The Aztecs haven’t been hampered much with sophomore backup quarterback Adam Dingwell now the starter after a season-ending injury to senior Ryan Katz.

3. Boise State (7-2, 4-1): There isn’t much separation between the Broncos and the teams above it in these rankings, but it falls a couple of spots for now after losing at home to San Diego State. It’s defense is still good, but the offense needs to be more productive. The team will get well this week at Hawaii.

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MW power rankings

WyoSports senior editor Robert Gagliardi rates all 10 Mountain West football and why. Look for his ratings on a weekly basis as the season continues.

1. No. 19 Boise State (7-1, 4-0): The Broncos continue to be the best defensive team in the MW, and the offense isn’t bad, either. They’ve  made it look easy the last two weeks against UNLV and Wyoming. But they’ll be tested Saturday against San Diego State in Boise. The Broncos have won seven straight since a season-opening loss at Michigan State.

2. Fresno State (6-3, 4-1): The Bulldogs trailed New Mexico 21-0 last week, but came back and won 49-32. This is the most explosive team in the league both offensively and defensively. I don’t see them losing any of their last three games against Hawaii, Nevada and Air Force.

3. San Diego State (6-3, 4-1): The Aztecs have won four in a row and seem to be getting better defensively. We will see how good and how far the team has come when it plays at Boise State Saturday. San Diego State must play the rest of the season with backup quarterback Adam Dingwell.

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