Week nine was a good week overall as I was 4-1 predicting winners in the Mountain West. I was not close on the Nevada Wolf Pack whom I predicted to win in Colorado Springs. In reality, the game went the opposite of what I was thinking with the Air Force Falcons running away with a 48-31 win.
This week has some big games with conference title implications. As always enjoy!
All times Mountain.
Air Force Falcons (5-3) (4-1) at Army Black Knights (1-7) (1-4) 10am
An Air Force win and they stay alive for the Commander’s in Chief Trophy. If Army wins the trophy will be earned in their annual game with the Navy Midshipmen at the end of the season. The Falcons might have to go without running back Cody Getz for the second game in a row. Wes Cobb was a stud in last week’s win against the Wolf Pack, and quarterback Connor Dietz has stepped up this season keeping the Falcons flying high offensively.
Army isn’t exactly having a fun season as their record shows. However, the Knights are running the ball better than anyone in the country thanks to their triple option offense. Between running backs Raymond Maples and Trent Steelman, Army has a shot to win at home. It will be the Knights defense that keeps that from happening.
Prediction: Air Force 40 Army 17
New Mexico Lobos (4-5) (1-3) at UNLV Rebles (1-8) (1-3) 2pm
Lobos running back Kasey Carrier has emerged as one of the best in the conference. Currently Carrier has the second most yards of any Mountain West rusher at 1,104. Bob Davie has dramatically improved UNM from complete obscurity to a program fighting for bowl contention.
Las Vegas has also seen improvement in their program as well. Coach Bobby Hauck has kept the Rebels competitive in most of their games. The difference between UNLV and UNM is wins. Looking at the win loss record one wouldn’t know the Rebs are better than in years past. UNM can be had if UNLV can protect the football and Tim Cornett can keep the chains moving on the groud. I’ll call the upset.
Prediction: New Mexico 28 UNLV 31
Colorado State Rams (2-6) (1-3) at Wyoming Cowboys (1-7) (0-4) 2:30pm
Once again, the Rams will be without their top two quarterbacks as they look to freshman Conner Smith. The annual Border War is as anticlimactic as it could be with both teams entering having a combined three wins.
Wyoming has one clear advantage in this game, and that is at quarterback where Brett Smith is healthy. Safety Luke Ruff is questionable for the game and would be missed if not on the field. I’ll give the edge to Wyoming at home with Smith outscoring CSU.
Prediction: Colorado State 24 Wyoming 34
Hawaii Warriors (1-6) (0-4) at Fresno State Bulldogs (6-3) (4-1) 5pm
This has to be the easiest of all the Mountain West predictions. How Hawaii can keep this game close is beyond my knowledge. Fresno State should have no problem racking up yards in the passing game with Derek Carr, and Robbie Rouse rushing for over 100 yards if not 200.
Expect the Dogs to have this game wrapped up at the half. Norm Chow will likely have to wait til 2013 for his first Mountain West win.
Prediction: Hawaii 13 Fresno State 63
San Diego State Aztecs (6-3) (4-1) at Boise State Broncos (7-1) (4-1) 8:30pm
Easily the game of the week in the Mountain West. The winner will earn the right to control their own destiny in the run for the conference title. While SDSU is a worthy opponent, the blue turf is anything but kind to Broncos challengers. Much will be expected of running back Adam Muema to keep pressure off quarterback Adam Dingwell, who is replacing the injured Ryan Katz.
Defensively the Broncos have been the best in the Mountain West averaging 13.6 points against. My guess is Dingwell will be forced to win the game for the Aztecs. Don’t count on that happening.
Prediction: San Diego State 17 Boise State 30