College football has arrived! Week zero is behind us, and I find myself wondering what college football will call it if they decide to start the season a week earlier. Most early season games feature meaningless match-ups with FCS teams. Things were different this year as we had a conference game with plenty of intrigue while Colorado State faced off against Hawaii. There was also Wyoming versus New Mexico State where we had a chance to see what the Cowboys will look like in the post-Josh Allen Era. With that being said, welcome to “The Good. the Bad, the Ugly.”
The guy that everyone was hoping wouldn’t win the quarterback competition came out and silenced all of the doubters. McDonald looked like an absolute stud. The Rams looked like they had no idea what to expect defensively, and McDonald absolutely blasted them. McDonald finished the game with 418 yards passing and 96 yards rushing with five total touchdowns. He was a force, and Hawaii football looked fun again. McDonald absolutely trucked the defender on this play as he was headed to the end zone.
I questioned whether the Cowboys were going to be able to run the ball this season, but Evans looked the part for the Cowboys. Evans looked like a workhorse running back, carrying the ball 24 times for 190 yards. It looks like the Cowboys plan on being a run heavy team this season as they ran the ball 57 times and threw it 22 times. It will be interesting to see if the Cowboys can have similar production against Washington State on Saturday. I get the feeling that we will have to see what Vander Waal is made of.
They were spectacular holding the Aggies to 135 yards of total offense, including -9 yards on the ground. Many of those yards came in garbage time. This week will be a test for the Wyoming secondary; we all know how much Washington State loves to throw the ball.
The Colorado State Run Game
I was perplexed by the lack of production from the Colorado State run game. They were not nearly as effective as they could have been, finishing the game with only 116 yards rushing against an inexperienced defensive line and a team that was missing their best linebacker. If the Rams have any chance of making a bowl this season, their run game needs to be better because they are staring down a 1-4 start.
The Tale of Two Halves
I am not sure exactly what I was watching defensively in the Hawaii-Colorado State game; it was fun from a neutral perspective. However, those two defenses are going to end up at the bottom of the Mountain West unless something drastically changes. The two teams combined to give up more than 1200 yards of total offense. Both of these teams will struggle to be bowl eligible if they do not improve on the defensive side of the ball.
The New Mexico State Offense
Wyoming’s defense was great, but that was a dreadful performance. New Mexico State is about to experience what life is like as an independent team that nobody outside of Las Cruces cares about. At least the Vandals were smart enough to join the Big Sky. That team is in for a LONG season.
Conference Games During Week Zero
Who thought this was a good idea?
What were your good, bad, and ugly moments for week zero? Leave your thoughts in the comments below. Stay tuned next week as the first official week of the 2018-2019 college football season kicks off, and we will get to see every Mountain West Conference team in action. Cheers to an exciting 2018 season!