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Week 5 Mountain West Football Preview

Better late then never, sorry this is late but its here the week five preview.

(1-2) (2-2)

War Memorial Stadium 2PM MT TV: Radio:1240 KFBC

Neither team is very good so far this year. Besides Wyoming's defense that is fairly solid the rest of both teams units are pedestrian. Bowling Green wins the battle of the best inept team to score points as they average 17 per game compared to Wyoming's 10 a game.

Bowling Green did start the year nicely by defeating then #25 Pitt, but everyone has figured out they are no good. On offense Bowling Green has been forced to pass a lot from being behind in their last two games and quarterback Tyler Sheehan is only averaging just above 200 yards a game, with two scores, and three picks. For a team that needed to pass because of being behind the Falcons were unable to post up any type of numbers.

If they were to be able to use running back Chris Bullock more then Bowling Green might be a decent team. On the year so far Bullock is averaging 5.5 yards per carry, if they are able to stay close in this game then Bullock could be a factor.

After last weeks embarrassing loss Wyoming needs to come out strong and not roll over if they go down by two or more touchdowns. Dax Crum is the quarterback, well at least for the first series, not sure what Joe Glenn was thinking when he pulled Crum for Karsteen Sweed and then back to Crum. The Cowboys need consistency and that will come from their run defense that is good and running back Devin Moore.

Final Score: Wyoming 20 Bowling Green 17

(2-1) (2-1)

Memorial Stadium 3PM PT TV: Comcast Sports West Radio: KCOL 600

Cal is an odd team this year, last game they lost on the road to a subpar Maryland team and then earlier they defeated darkhorse Big 10 favorite Michigan State. The one assumption is that Cal is good when they play home games. Last year these two teams played and it was a fairly competitive game until Cal took over late in the game and pulled away.

This is the first true road game for the Rams and new quarterback Billy Farris. The Rams need to start this game as they have with others which is run Kyle Bell and Gatrell Johnson III and the Cal defense, because both of these backs are quite impressive. Running the ball early and if they do it effectively will open up tight end Kory Sperry who is the teams go to receiver along with Dion Morten who has over 400 yards in three games.

The quarterback issue is still not at the comfort level it should be with Billy Farris, but if given time he can be effective against most teams.

On to Cal, who wants to get a win after losing to Maryland on the road. The teams 21 fourth quarter points were not enough to track down the Terps.

Players to watch on Cal is Jahvid Best the running back who is averaging 7 yards per carry, most of that success came from the Washington State game where Cal won 66-3. Then in the Terp game Best managed only 25 yards, but he still needs to be accounted for

If the running game game does not go well for Cal then look for them to pass against Colorado

#24 (4-0) #2(3-0)

Oklahoma Memorial Stadium 6PM CT TV: Radio: 103.3 ESPN Radio

TCU has won the last two games in Norman, and the most recent was in 2005 when TCU stunned then top 10 Oklahoma. This game will help the Mountain West prove they belong with the big boys if they can win this game.

An interesting note according to Scouts Inc. has the Oklahoma with the better offense at every position, but they also give the edge in defense to TCU. Both of these schools have scored a lot of points, a surprise for TCU, and the defenses are giving up less then 15 per game.

A little rant here, all the so-called experts are knocking TCU's schedule for not being tough because they have played Stanford, New Mexico, Stephen F. Austin, and SMU granted not good and it includes a FBS team in SFA. However, Oklahoma has played an equal schedule by playing FBS team Chattanooga, Cinncinatti, and Washington, and if you know anything about college football these two schedules are very similar. So, those talking heads need to know their facts before mouthing off saying TCU has played no one when Oklahoma's best win is a decent Cincinnati team that is barely above New Mexico.

Back to the preview, TCU finally had running back Aaron Brown last week after missing the teams first three games and had 51 rushing yards and 60 receiving yards against SMU. TCU has three strong backs with Aaron Brown, Ryan Christian, and Joseph Turner who all average four yards per carry. These multiple backs will be able to keep them fresh and allow TCU to pound against the Oklahoma line. The offensive line of TCU is undersized which could hurt the running game, but if Oklahoma is over perusing then watch for TCU to run screens and misdirection to use OU's speed against them.

Quarterback Andy Dalton has finally emerged as a good quarterback who is making good decisions and not forcing the ball like last year, which lead to interceptions. TCU might have success if they spread the field with four wide outs and throw quick passes and let the receivers make plays in one on one coverage.

Oklahoma against TCU's defense will be intersting because TCU has given up eight points per game while Oklahoma has scored 54.7 per game. Do not look for either team to get near their averages on this end, Oklahoma has Heisman contender quarterback Sam Bradford who is averaging 4 touchdons per game and just under 300 yards per game.

TCU has a very good run defense and will face one of the most difficult run teams in the nation, because so far Oklahoma has a three players roatation and the team has averaged 215 yards per game, and the unit has averaged 4.8 per game.

This is a must see game for anyone who wants to see if TCU can take out Oklahoma, but OU has extra motivation to win this game besides the loss from 2005, but the USC loss on Thursday this win could put the Sooners to number one in the polls.

Final Score: Oklahoma 24 TCU 20

(1-3) (1-1)

Aggie Memorial Stadium 6PM MT TV: NMSU PPV Radio: 770 KKOB

In state rivals face off again, and if last week was any indication for New Mexico this game could get ugly. First off, New Mexico lost quarterback Donovan Porterie for the year with a torn ACL and MCL in the game against Tulsa.

Without Porterie New Mexico has been very bad and even with Porterie the Lobos were not good. New Mexico will be starting Brad Gruner the rest of the way at quarterback. Look for New Mexico to counter New Mexico State's pass happy offense with running back Rodney Ferguson to control the time of possession. Ferguson is good enough to do so with his ability, but New Mexico will need to work in other backs and make some type of passing game so the Aggies can not crowd the box.

New Mexico State has NFL prospect Chase Holebrookwho has 471 yards and five scores in only two games so far. The Aggies will throw, throw, and throw some more in this rival game, or any other game this year.

The Aggies have not scored what they are accusomed to, but consider that the Ags played Nebraska and only scored seven points in that loss so their stats are not accurate what they will do against New Mexico. The Aggies will need to run the ball some to keep turnovers down, which has been a problem, and to protect a lead if they get a lead. Also, New Mexico's 3-3-5 defense has the players to be able to slow down this passing game by having the defensive backs on the field. If New Mexico State scores in the 30's it will be difficult for New Mexico to keep pace and most likely will lose. Creating turnovers and getting short fields is what New Mexico needs in this game and not to have Brad Guner do too much this week.

Final Score: New Mexico State 31 New Mexico 20

(1-3) (0-3)

Qualcomm Stadium 5PM PT TV: Go Vandals TV Radio: XTRA Sports 1360

The Aztecs may get thier first victory of the year with a home game against a very bad Idaho Vandals from the WAC. This Idaho team is probably the worst team in all of division one football, because last week they lost to Utah State 42-17.

Idaho has had to throw the ball a lot being down and Nathen Enderle has been decent, with seven touchdown passes. However he has 5 picks and averaged less then 200 yards per game, in four games this season.

The one bright spot for Idaho is the running game where they average four yards per carry, however they have yet to had the ability to use the running game consistently because of being down early and often. If the Vandals can keep it close then the running game could be a factor.

This game gives San Diego State quarterback Ryan Lindley to break out and have a full stat sheet. Lindley has been the teams bright spot with 766 yards in only three games this year. He can move the ball well, but interceptions, three, has slowed drives this year.

LIndley can only do so much, but the Aztecw will need to show some type of pulse in the running game. Brandon Sullivan or Atiyyah Henderson need to show up to have a balanced attack.

This game could be an ugly game, because both teams are really this bad.

Final Score: San Diego State 21 Idaho 13

#17 (4-0) (3-1)

Rice Eccles Stadium 6PM MT TV: NONE Radio: :KALL 700 Sports

The Utes welcome back former Coach Ron McBride to Salt Lake with his new team, Weber State of the FCS division. Coach McBride coached Utah from 1990 to 2002 and took the team to six bowl games. This game will not be close, even though Weber is one of the top FCS teams in the country, and their only loss comes against Hawai'i in Hawai'i. In that game Weber actually was leading in the second half.

In this game look for Utah to put up a bunch of points and get backups in the game such as quarterbacks Corbin Loucks and Chad Mannis to see what those two players can do.

Weber State throws the ball a lot and has done a good job of putting up passing yard numbers. Cameron Higgins is the starter and so far this year has 12 touchdowns with only 3 picks, so he could put up some numbers against Utah.

Final Score: Utah 44 Weber State 10

(1-2) (3-1)

Sam Boyd Stadium 7PM PT TV: Radio: 1100 ESPN Radio

Another rival game this week in the MWC, with Nevada and UNLV facing off. If UNLV can win this game it will start their best start since UNLV started 4-1 in 2003. Nevada runs a different type of offense in the pistol offense, but so far Nevada has had little success because Nevada has played Texas Tech and Missouri. If Nevada had not backed out of their agreement with BYU then this team could be 0-3.

This Wolfpack team is hard to judge because their win came against Grambling State and then the two losses that Nevada was not in those games. Even with Nevada not being in two games they have had much success in running the ball. So far on this year Nevada has 277 yards on the ground and with an average of 5.8 per play. UNLV will need to watch the running game that Nevada will be using early on in this game to draw the Rebels to sleep and then open up the passing game when UNLV slides everyone up.

UNLV runs a type of offense some what similar to Texas Tech and Missouri by spreading the ball around, but they have Frank Summers who is a powerful back. UNLV is playing their second straight home game and win, so the crowd should be in full force in this game.

UNLV needs to use all of their wide receivers becasue the secondary of Nevada is what has hurt them so far in this season.

Final Score: UNLV 23 Nevada 17