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Mountaintop View 4-16-18

SBNation projections in the MWC, the new kickoff rule, and controversy at Utah State.

NCAA Football: Georgia State at Air Force Ray Carlin-USA TODAY Sports

What a busy weekend it was in the world of the Mountain West Conference. Quite a few teams had their spring games/fan days on Saturday. Read the latest articles going around the conference over the next few days, starting with the 5 we are rolling out today:

MWC power rankings preview

They go for the obvious pick of Boise State, stating the Broncos have both the highest ceiling and the highest floor in the conference. However, the divide isn’t that large in their opinion, as they have five other teams in the next tier, specifically Fresno State and SDSU are the top competitors.

Boise State specific preview

They break down team by team as well. We’ve featured some of these articles as they have appeared. Here they cite reason for excite as returning so many starters and talent in general on both sides of the ball. Plus boasting back to back solid recruiting classes.

Fresno State specific preview

This article thinks Tedford and co are more than capable of repeating their success of last season. Though they will probably take a hit on defense, their offense could take a step forward. They have a great group of WRs and return a good one at QB. All these articles a great in-depth reads.

Controversial new kickoff rule going into effect.

In an attempt to increase safety of players on kickoffs, kick returners will now be allowed to call for a fair catch (similar to punt returns) on kicks that our caught inside the 25 yard line. This fair catch will result in a touchback, where the ball will be placed at the 25 yard line. Expect this to be under a microscope all season long.

Controversial contract stuff going on with Aggies.

Normally when a coach is fired, they are owed the remainder of their salary per their contract. One would think recently fired and former Utah State Aggie MBB coach Tim Duryea would be no exception. However, due to a typo, the dates in the contract only show 4 seasons (although it states he will be paid for 5 seasons). It seems like this should’ve been caught about 3 years ago when it was drafted and signed, but this situation seems far from over.

On the horizon:

  • From the weekend: A recap of the Fresno State spring game.
  • Later today: Our weekly MWC Recruiting Roundup, with interviews from a few weekend visitors.
  • Coming this week: One question for every MWC bball team this offseason.