Here is the delayed second preview and this one starts off with UNLV who was 2-10 last and on of those wins game against I-AA opponent Idaho State. Head Coach Mike Samford came from University of Utah right before their Fiesta Bowl game in 2004 to be the coach at UNLV. So far he has won only 4 games in his tenure, people everywhere thought he could bring in his high powered spread offense make people care about football in Vegas. This year seems to be crucial for Samford who has some talent with the return of Rocky Hinds who is fully recovered from ACL surgery. Plus the Rebels return freshman of the year in Ryan Wolfe at wide out. The Rebels do return 7 offensive and defensive starters so there should be some stability there. However by saying that both sides were in the bottom quarter in each major statistical category except for passing, but the passing is deceiving because they were behind early. The Rebels do get an early gift by playing equally pathetic Utah State when they open the season, but then their next 3 are tough Wisconsin, Hawai'i and Utah even though they are all at home that is a tough stretch.
August 30 at Utah State 6:05 PM MT NONE (KJZZ IN UTAH)
September 8 Wisconsin 7:00 PM PT VERSUS
September 15 Hawaii 6:30 PM PT The Mtn
September 22 Utah 7:00 PM PT The Mtn
September 29 at Nevada 1:05 PM PT TBA (prob ESPN2)
October 6 at Air Force 6:00 PM PT The Mtn
October 13 Brigham Young 6:30 PM PT The Mtn
October 20 Colorado State 6:00 PM PT NONE
October 27 at Wyoming 2:00 PM ET The Mtn
November 10 San Diego State 8:00 PM PT CSTV
November 17 at TCU 6:30 PM CT TBA (The Mtn or CSTV)
November 24 at New Mexico 2:30 PM MT The Mtn
Lock it up. . . @ Utah State (but barely)
Maybe . . . @ Nevada, @ Air Force, Colorado State, San Diego State, @ Wyoming, @ New Mexico
No chance. . . Wisconsin, Hawai'i, Utah, BYU, @TCU
I do predict the Rebels to finish ahead of the Aztecs, I guess it is because they have an experienced QB back and some good receivers and 7 guys on both side of the balls back.
Worst case scenario for the Rebels: they lose the home opener on the road to a pathetic Utah State team on the road and then go on to lose their next 3 at home during their toughest part of the schedule and lose all hope. The season is starting to turn into a typical Rebel season. After getting waxed by Hawai'i, Utah, and Wisconsin the Rebels then it snowballs into more loses against the league, and their only hope for a win is at home against San Diego State. I could see the Aztecs go 0-12, unlikely on the surface, but going by history it could happen.
Best case scenario for the Rebels: They go out on win their first road game since beating BYU 24-20 on Oct 8, 2004 (here is the link for proof) Yes it's been that long, by beating Utah State. I still see know way they win any of the next three against Hawai'i, Wisconsin, or Utah but with this being the best case for the Rebels they will scare Wisconsin for a quarter and play Utah tough while at home. In a down slump the Rebels go on the road to play their rival at Nevada-Reno and win that game and then Air Force for their second and third road win of the year. Then they go out to play BYU, CSU, and Wyoming losing 2 of 3 the lone win against CSU. Then the pillow fight of the conference is playing the Aztecs at home and win that one. They then go to TCU and lose and then beat the Lobos of New Mexico, partly because they always under achieve. That would put the Rebels at 6-6.
The Real deal: Their real record will end up being 4-8 with wins over Utah State, San Diego State, a surprise win over Colorado State, and then New Mexico. I still wouldn't be surprised if they went 3-9 or worse.