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2020 Football Look Ahead: Group of 5

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How will the MWC fare against the rest of the Group of 5 this fall?

NCAA Football: New Mexico Bowl-Central Michigan vs San Diego State Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Mountain West conference had a pretty good year last season against the Power 5 while also taking care of FCS opponents. Unfortunately, it was more of a mixed-bag against the other Group of 5 conferences.

The MWC record versus the Group of 5 in 2019:

  • American, 0-3
  • MAC, 1-3
  • Conference USA, 2-0
  • Sun Belt, 2-1

First off, this is a small sample size since only 12 games were played in 2019. Simply put, the Mountain West does not get to play the other Group of 5 teams very often, but going a combined 5-7 does not look very good.

Finishing win-less against the American hurts. The American has positioned itself as the top Group of 5 conference in recent years. If the Mountain West wants to challenge the American for that distinction, the MWC needs to start beating the AAC more in non-conference play.

Ending with a losing record against the MAC is also pretty upsetting. The Mountain West has been the better conference in recent years. In 2019, the MWC was able to go 10-11 against Power 5 teams while the MAC went 1-22 versus the Power 5. Looks like playing down to your competition.

Winning records against Conference USA and the Sun Belt should be expected. The Mountain West did well, combining to go 4-1 against those conferences.

Now, let’s take a look at the 2020 schedule against the Group of 5:

  • Air Force - Navy on 10/3
  • Boise State - Georgia Southern on 9/5 & @Marshall on 9/25
  • Colorado State - None Scheduled
  • New Mexico - None Scheduled
  • Utah State - None Scheduled
  • Wyoming - @Louisiana on 9/12 & @Ball State on 9/26
  • Fresno State - None Scheduled
  • Hawaii - None Scheduled
  • Nevada - UTEP on 9/12 & @USF on 9/19
  • San Diego State - @Toledo on 9/12
  • San Jose State - @Central Michigan on 9/5
  • UNLV - Louisiana Tech on 9/5

Only 10 games before bowl season. By conference opponent, the MWC will play: 3 games against the MAC, 2 games against the Sun Belt, 2 games against the AAC & 3 games against Conference USA.

The MWC also has 10 games against the FCS this season. However, the Mountain West has 21 games versus the Power 5.

So here are my questions you:

Poll

Will the Mountain West finish with a winning record against the Group of 5 this year?

This poll is closed

  • 82%
    Yes
    (53 votes)
  • 17%
    No
    (11 votes)
64 votes total Vote Now

Poll

Should the Mountain West be playing the Group of 5 more often?

This poll is closed

  • 72%
    Yes - Get rid of the FCS games and replace them with Group of 5 games
    (43 votes)
  • 6%
    Yes - Get rid of 1⁄2 of the Power 5 games and replace them with Group of 5 games
    (4 votes)
  • 20%
    No - Keep it about the same
    (12 votes)
59 votes total Vote Now

Poll

In a given year, what would you weigh more heavily for determining the strength of the Group of 5 conferences?

This poll is closed

  • 72%
    Record versus the Power 5
    (40 votes)
  • 12%
    Record versus the Group of 5
    (7 votes)
  • 14%
    Bowl record
    (8 votes)
55 votes total Vote Now

Also, please leave your thoughts in the comments below about what you think will happen between the MWC and the rest of the Group of 5.