Week eight is behind us, and the conference appears to be wide open. The conference favorite lost a non-conference game that has them looking vulnerable, and one team from the West looks poised for a return to the top. Let’s take a look at the good, bad, and ugly moments of week eight.
San Diego State
It wasn’t always pretty, but that phrase pretty much describes this Aztecs squad. They did an excellent job of slowing down San Jose State’s potent passing attack, and they were able to grind the game away on the ground. The Aztecs controlled the clock with 55 carries for 260 yards. A solid win for the Aztecs over an improved San Jose State squad.
A great return by Scarver and some timely turnovers allowed the Aggies to come away with a comfortable victory against the Wolf Pack on Saturday night. However, the Aggies have to be concerned with the play of Jordan Love, who finished the game completing only 13 of 31 passes for 169 yards. Luckily for Love, they were able to control the game on the ground and come away with the victory.
The Bulldogs used a dominating second half and nearly 500 yards of total offense to destroy a poor UNLV squad. It was a refreshing performance for Fresno State, who has struggled on the ground this season. They finished the game with 260 yards, including carries of 82 and 40 yards. Fresno State should be able to continue that trend when they take on Colorado State this weekend.
Nine possessions and seven touchdowns; that’s pretty efficient if you ask me. A week after taking it to Fresno State, Air Force did the same against Hawaii. The Falcons finished the game with over 500 yards of total offense, including 353 on the ground. Air Force will conclude their tough three game stretch when they play host to Utah State next week, a game that Air Force has to win if they are going to stay in the Mountain Division race.
It wasn’t the dominating performance that I expected, but the Cowboys did what they needed to do and came away with a division win against a pesky opponent. Wyoming continued the trend they have been following all year, solid defensive play and a run heavy offense that grinds away at the clock. It was a recipe for success this week.
I mean, they kind of hung in the game and managed 372 yards of offense. However, the Lobos only managed ten points and continued to struggle on the other side of the ball. This team and their coaching staff have a number of issues that will likely be addressed this offseason.
San Jose State
The Spartans hung tough, but they couldn’t stop the Aztecs’ run game when they needed to. SJSU also struggled in the passing game, which has been arguably the best in the Mountain West this season. The Spartans learned why the Aztecs have one of the best defenses in the Mountain West.
I’m not going to sugarcoat things. This was an awful performance by the Broncos. You can’t lose to bad teams, and the Broncos did just that. The defense had their worst quarter of the year, giving up 21 points to BYU in the quarter. After falling behind 28-10, Boise State ultimately ran out of time losing the game 28-25. We learned why Bachmeier won the starting job. It also looks like the Broncos may have lost their starting running back in Robert Mahone.
This squad just doesn’t have the talent to hang in this conference. That win over Vanderbilt gave their fan base a false sense of hope, but the Rebels are what they are, a poorly coached team that lacks talent. That needs to change with the Raiders coming into town.
Hawaii’s defense had absolutely no answer for Air Force and the triple option. The Falcons dominated every aspect of this game, especially time of possession. The Warriors can still have a say in the race for the West, but they will have to run the table the rest of the way in conference play and play some defense in the process.
This team is hard to understand. One week they look like they are starting to figure things out, and the next week they look like they don’t belong on the field. Their defense did enough to give them a chance, but some bad turnovers and poor special teams play cost them a chance to stay in the game.
That’s it for this edition of “The Good, the Bad, the Ugly.” What were some moments that stuck out to you?