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What Mountain West teams could fit into a Power Five conference?

Can any Mountain West teams hang in a Power Five league?

Boise State spring game Photo by Loren Orr/Getty Images

The Big 12 expansion tour has cooled a bit but that does not mean there are teams that could make the leap and be fine in not just the Big 12 but any power five league.

We are starting our own expansion preview series that should be interesting, but Campus Insiders put together a list of 16 teams that includes four Mountain West teams.

The website ranks the 16 teams as well and includes Air Force, Fresno State, San Diego State and Boise State.

Here is Campus Insiders ranking with a portion of their explanation of how these Mountain West teams would fare in a big-time league.

15. Air Force

Troy Calhoun took the baton from Fisher DeBerry in 2007 and has missed the postseason just one time since. The Falcons won 10 games two years ago, and their version of the triple-option continues to be a handful in the Mountain West, the toughest of the Group of 5 conferences. Could Air Force win the Pac-12? No. But every Pac-12 coach would breathe a little easier during the years the Falcons didn’t show up on the schedule.

12. Fresno State

Fresno State routinely takes overlooked California recruits and transforms them into next-level talents. And with that kind of a formula, would it be inconceivable for the Bulldogs to be every bit as competitive as, say, Colorado or Oregon State in the Pac-12?

11. San Diego State

The Aztecs have strung together five straight winning seasons, copping the Mountain West in 2012 and 2015. A single victory in the last 26 contests against teams currently in Power 5 conferences keeps San Diego State from climbing higher on this list.

1. Boise State

This program has engineered a remarkable climb, from Big Sky to Big West to WAC to its current home in the Mountain West. Along the way, the Broncos honed a blueprint for success, turning their kind of kids into all-star playmakers and pros on both sides of the ball.

Boise State is a national brand that would find a way to compete in the Pac-12 if the league could ever overlook its relatively small market.

Air Force and Fresno State seem to be the most far-fetched but remember back in 1985 the Falcons nearly won the national title, and they always give better teams a fight due to their run-option attack.

Fresno State has had some very good players but have rarely put together a great season. Even with Derek Carr and multiple NFL talented players they were unable to cash in on the BCS by losing to San Jose State on Black Friday back in 2013 and then were smoked by USC in the Las Vegas. The Bulldogs seem to typically have some pretty good teams but rarely the great one.,

As for San Diego State, they are new to the scene of winning after a long-time of having losing season after losing season. Then Brady Hoke came to town and changed things and now Rocky Long looks to have the Aztecs where they should be. San Diego State has built-in advantages with location, weather and access to talent. They could fit into a Power Five conference, but the only problem is that the Pac-12 is not going to expand any time soon.

The description by Campus Insiders is probably enough as Boise State has been nothing but winners at every level of college football despite being in an area that might have a handful or two of FBS and FCS talent in Idaho. Yet, they have been one of the most consistent programs for nearly two decades with multiple big time wins.