Oct 072003
 
Authors: Steve Latuda

This is a big week in the Mountain West Conference. With six of

the eight teams meeting in conference action this week, the

front-runners of the conference will be determined in an evenly

matched MWC.

New Mexico (3-3, 0-1 MWC)

Coming off a 34-7 victory last week against Utah State, the

Lobos now head into their only bye week of the season.

“It’s nice to get a win heading into the bye week,” Lobo head

coach Rocky Long said. “Now we can get healthy heading into the

conference schedule.”

The Lobos have played one conference game this season. They lost

that game to BYU at home 10-7.

Next week they travel to San Diego State.

Wyoming (1-4, 0-1) at Utah State (1-4)

Saturday at 6 p.m.

The Cowboys come off of a bye week in which, according to coach

Joe Glenn, they worked hard on protecting star quarterback Casey

Bramlet. The Cowboys offensive line has given up 18 sacks this

season, and they need to start giving their quarterback more time

to make decisions.

“He can make things happen if we give him time,” Glenn said.

The Aggies are coming off a loss to New Mexico, and will face

their third MWC foe of the season.

This is the 100th meeting between the two schools, with the last

one coming on Sept. 22, 2001, in Logan, Utah. The Cowboys scratched

out a 43-42 victory.

CSU (3-3, 0-1) at Brigham Young (3-3, 2-1)

Thursday at 8 p.m. TV: ESPN2

BYU has three conference games under its belt heading into a

showdown with CSU. The Cougars are 2-1, and in solid position in

the conference standings. Last week they defeated San Diego State

44-36 behind the arm of freshman quarterback John Beck.

While the pass offense finally came to life, the pass defense

was once again suspect last week allowing 352 yards in the air. BYU

coach Gary Crowton knows that the Rams will test his secondary this

week.

“We will have to keep their receivers underneath us,” he said.

“We have good match-ups whether we play zone or man defense.”

The winner of this game has won the conference title each of the

last three years and CSU has not won in Provo, Utah, since

1994.

UNLV (4-1, 0-0) at Air Force (5-1, 2-0)

Saturday at 1 p.m. TV: ESPN+Plus

This conference showdown will be the first for UNLV and the

third for the Falcons. The Falcons come into this weekend suffering

a devastating 28-25 loss to rival Navy, in which the Falcons

received a taste of their own medicine, as they were unable to stop

Navy’s triple option.

“Their fullback game was devastating,” said Falcons head coach

Fisher DeBerry. “We couldn’t stop it.”

Air Force is no longer ranked in the top 25.

The Rebels’ fortunes last week were the total opposite of the

Falcons.

Last week the Rebels defeated in-state rival Nevada 16-12, and

inched closer to cracking the top 25 for the first time this

year.

UNLV’s defense will be key this week as they attempt to do

something they couldn’t last year: stop Air Force quarterback

Chance Harridge. Last year Harridge accounted for four touchdowns

(two passing, two rushing) in AFA’s 49-32 victory.

San Diego State (3-3, 0-1) at Utah (4-1, 1-0)

Saturday at 5 p.m.

Utah is on an impressive three-game winning streak that has seen

them knock-off two BCS foes, (Oregon and California) and conference

foe Colorado State in Fort Collins.

“The ability of our players to focus each week has been key,”

said head coach Urban Meyer. “They play so hard and don’t take

anything lightly.”

The Aztecs were knocked off last week at home by BYU 44-36, but

did find positives in the return of quarterback Adam Hall and the

emergence of receiver Jeff Webb. Webb hauled in 10 catches for 253

yards last week, and will be looked upon to do the same this week

against a solid Ute defense.

“It was nice to see Adam back on the field,” said head coach Tom

Craft. ” I think no one was as happy as Jeff Webb.”

The Aztecs took last year’s meeting in San Diego 36-17.

 

 

 

 

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