This idea came from SB Nation's SEC site Team Speed Kills where talk about the SEC trap games. Trap games happen all the time and are games that are either over looked because of a lesser opponent, one of the teams pulled a huge upset the week prior and did not prepare the following week, and finally is because the week after said game is a big time game.
Trap Game: @ Wyoming September 25th
Prior Game: @ Oklahoma September 18th
Next Game: Navy October 2nd
Reasons for a trap game Their annual game against Navy that will most likely decide who wins the annual Commander-in-Chief award and it is a big deal. Most likely Air Force will be coming of a loss to Oklahoma and may assume that they can roll over Wyoming since, well, it is Wyoming. The Cowboys are going to be a better team then last year since they are in year two of Dave Christenson's offense with Austyn-Carta-Samuels entrenched at quarterback, so this game will not be easy. This game may get lost in the shuffle for the Falcons as they mope over a loss to the Sooners and may peak past their game at Laramie to Navy and try to beat them for the first time in a long time.
Trap Game: @Air Force Falcons September 11th
Prior Game: Washington Huskies September 4th
Next Game: @Florida State Seminoles September 18th
Reasons for a trap game: This is a classic sandwich trap game. BYU plays a solid Pac-10 program with a supposedly great quarterback in Jake Locker with a little extra spice because the Washington coach is former BYU great quarterback Steve Sarkisian. BYU hyped freshman Jake Heaps is from Seattle and turned down the Huskies, two years ago BYU won on a controversial penalty that moved back a Washington extra point that was then blocked and allowed BYU to win. That game will have a lot of emotion, not mention an open quarterback competition to see who performs better between Riley Nelson or Jake Heaps in a real game situation.
The Air Force game is a huge trap and a game I think BYU will not win. Yes, Air Force has not won against BYU in nearly a decade, but BYU is down this year. The Cougars will feel confident that they will beat Air Force because that is what they do, which means some players may already looking ahead to playing at Florida State and may be focusing on getting some revenge against the 'Noles who humiliated BYU last year.
Trap Game: @ San Diego State November 6th
Prior Game: New Mexico October 30th
Next Game: BYU November 13th
Reasons for a trap game: First off it is hard finding a trap game for a team that is not expected to be all that good this year. The one game that makes the most sense for Colorado State is San Diego State, but I am not even sure if it qualifies but it makes the most sense. The Rams will want revenge of beating New Mexico since that was the Lobos only win last year, and I guess a win like that may carry over to the San Diego State game. The Aztecs have not been great so the Rams may not be as prepared, plus everyone's rival in the league BYU is coming to town the week after and is always a big game.
Trap Game: UTEP October 2nd
Prior Game: @UNLV September 25th
Next Game: @New Mexico State
Reasons for a trap game: The Lobos want wins, but they really want wins against what the Lobos perceive a lesser rival in New Mexico State. Last year the Lobos were embarrassed by losing to their instate rival. While every game should be fully focussed on to get a few more wins the game against the Aggies will be circled on the calendar. UTEP is nothing special but compared to the Lobos neither team should feel too confident, and if the Lobos are looking ahead at all to New Mexico State they will fall to the Miners.
San Diego State
Trap Game:Utah State September 25th
Prior Game: @Missouri September 18th
Next Game:@BYU October 9th
Reasons for a trap game: This is the classic trap game a bad opponent sandwhiched between to good opponents. The Aztecs should be at a point where they are better then Utah State and with this being a home game the Aztecs are going to be the favored team. The Missouri road trip will be interesting because the Tigers are the only team to be able to challenge Nebraska and the way the Aztec offense is projected to be they could make a game out of this, and if they pull the upset the handful of Aztec fans will be celebrating in the streets of a win declare the Utah State game a formality. After the Utah State game is BYU who they get at home and the Aztecs maybe dreaming of the good old days with Marshal Faulk who ran wild over BYU and the rest of the old WAC in games that were classic shootouts. Utah State may be improved just enough to take out the Aztecs if they get to excited if they beat Missouri.
Trap Game: @UNLV October 30th
Prior Game: Air Force October 23rd
Next Game: @Utah November 6th
Reasons for a trap game: Being a national title contender can make every game a trap game as each team will be gunning to knock TCU off of their Mountain West throne. TCU is obviously the better team then UNLV, but the games surrounding are really big games for TCU. The first is Air Force who gave TCU a heck of a game in the frozen rain game last year, and Air Force should still be a really good team. Then there is Utah who put up a masterful come from behind win in 2008 when TCU last came to Salt Lake City. Gary Patterson will have his players ready to go each and every week, but the UNLV game is a game that a lot of teams would over look with type of opponent that is in the following week.
Trap Game: New Mexico September 25th
Prior Game: @Idaho September 18th
Next Game: Nevada October 2nd
Reasons for a trap game: New Mexico seems like an easy win for most teams in the league, even for the bad teams in the league. In UNLV's case their rival who is also expected to join the league in a year or two will make this game even more heated then usual. Then toss in the fact that the Wolfpack rushed for over at will over UNLV in the second half of a game that was close for most of the game. The Idaho game will not be a worry because it is before the New Mexico game, but the game week preparation for the New Mexico game may not be there as some may want some revenge against Nevada. A loss to the Lobos would be heartbreaking and with the Rebels goal most likely to get to a bowl game they should not take any games for granted.
Trap Game: @ San Diego State November 20th
Prior Game: @ Notre Dame November 13th
Next Game: BYU November 27th
Reasons for a trap game: Finding a trap game for Utah was tough since the Utes are historically good at preparing for games (as a Utah fan I try to block out the 27-0 debacle to UNLV). San Diego State is a trap game if there ever was. First off the Utes travel to South Bend for the first time in school history and could realistically be anywhere from 7-2 or 9-0 as the game prior to Notre Dame is against TCU. There is the allure of Touchdown Jesus, Rudy, Knute Rockne, and the four horseman, but Utah went to Michigan a few years prior and have shown they can win games in historic settings.
The San Diego State game becomes an even bigger trap game if Utah wins, because they may celebrate a bit too long, and with the Holy War against BYU the following week concentration on the Aztecs may be tough. Not only is it the Holy War it is the last time for the for seeable future that the BYU vs. Utah game will be a conference game. The Utah has owned the Aztecs over the past few years there is reason to believe they may over look the Aztecs, but the Aztecs are expected to be much better and could surprise the Utes if they are not careful.
Trap Game: @Toledo October 2nd
Prior Game: Air Force September 25th
Next Game: @TCU October 9th
Reasons for a trap game: Wyoming's schedule is just brutal with games in the non conference against Boise and Texas in the first three weeks, but Toledo looks to be a trap game since that is when the schedule lightens up before a stretch of games against TCU, Utah, and BYU. Toledo should be a game that Wyoming should be up for since it is a good chance for a win, but they may either be beaten down from losing to Boise State, Texas, and most likely Air Force that their confidence may be shaken. Not that Wyoming would be looking ahead to playing TCU may be thinking how Toledo is a break from the action and a chance to either relax -- which will result in a loss -- or a time to shine and beat a lesser team. I will not be surprised if Wyoming loses to Toledo or they destroy Toledo ion that match up.