The MWC is the only conference in the country where every team
is still mathematically in the hunt to become bowl eligible. That
won’t happen of course, but with the way things are in the MWC this
year, fans probably will not know until the end who goes to a bowl
game, and who spends Christmas vacation at home.
“It is amazing that every team in the league could become bowl
eligible,” said New Mexico head coach Rocky Long. “That can’t be
possible in any other major conference.”
Of the eight MWC teams, seven are vying for at least a portion
of the Mountain West Conference Championship.
To become bowl eligible, a team must win half the games on its
schedule. One of those victories can be over a Division I-AA
opponent, but I-AA victories may only be counted for bowl
eligibility purposes once every four seasons.
With that said, this week’s games should clear up some of the
mess that is the MWC standings.
UNLV (5-5, 1-4 MWC)
Entering a bye week, the Rebels must win one of their two
remaining games to become bowl eligible. Essentially, the Rebels
must win out, and pray for some major upsets at the top of the MWC
standings to be invited to a bowl game.
BYU (4-6, 3-3) at Notre Dame (3-6)
Saturday, November 15 at Notre Dame Stadium
12:30 p.m. – NBC
The Cougars must win their final two games to become bowl
eligible. With three conference losses, they are still in the hunt
to be co-conference champs, but the chances are slim. The Cougars
welcome the University of Utah to Provo in the final game of the
season, but their postseason window is closing.
San Diego State (5-5, 2-3) at Colorado State (5-5, 2-3)
Saturday, November 15 at Hughes Stadium
1:00 p.m. – ESPN+Plus and KTDV 20
A limping Aztec team must win their final two games, but with
their big three, quarterback Adam Hall, running back Lynell
Hamilton and wide receiver Jeff Webb, injured, the Aztecs must
count on inexperience to become bowl eligible.
“Right now, the odds are against us,” linebacker Kirk Morrison
said. “We have three vital parts of our offense hurt. I don’t know
how we’re going to overcome that.”
SDSU has two I-AA victories this season (Eastern Washington and
Samford), and can count only one for bowl eligibility purposes.
Air Force (7-3, 3-2) at New Mexico (6-4, 3-2)
Saturday, November 15 at University Stadium
This is the game of the week in the MWC. The Lobos come off of a
last second win against CSU, and now control their own destiny.
“It’s a heckuva shift in preparation from Colorado State to Air
Force,” Long said. “The one extra day will help the coaches’ plan
for the option.”
The Lobos need one win to become bowl eligible, because their
victory over a I-AA team last year cancels this year’s victory over
I-AA South Texas.
New Mexico is still in the hunt to go to the Liberty Bowl. If
they win out and Utah loses once, the Lobos would hold the
tiebreaker because they beat the Utes.
Air Force, who lost to Utah two weeks ago, needs to win out, and
have Utah lose its final two games; however, that is unlikely. Air
Force is already bowl eligible, and should land an invitation with
a victory over New Mexico.
Wyoming (4-5, 2-2) at Utah (7-2, 4-1)
Saturday, November 15 at Rice-Eccles Stadium
Salt Lake City, Utah
All Utah has to do to stay in the MWC driver’s seat is win. The
Utes don’t need anyone to lose, as long as they win. They are
basically guaranteed to land in a bowl.
Wyoming on the other hand must keep up their winning ways and
sweep through the rest of the season to become bowl eligible. A
bowl is possible if they upset Utah, and defeat UNLV.
“We have a chance,” said Wyoming head coach Joe Glenn. “Our
offense is clicking thanks to the improved play by our O-line.”