Welcome back to another edition of the MWCConnection Roundtable. For this week, we revisit a classic question and one that is sure to generate a lot of debate and other opinions. For the 2022 football season, how many Mountain West teams will be bowl eligible?
Zach: This is a little bit tougher to gauge this year. There are a few teams that are perennial bowl teams that lost a lot of talent (Wyoming and Nevada). There are other teams that look like they have an outside chance (San Jose State, Colorado State, UNLV. I think Air Force, Boise State, and Utah State are locks in the Mountain. Colorado State is going to sneak in with 6 wins. I’m the West, Fresno State and San Diego State are locks and San Jose State gets in as well. I’m going with 7 teams in total.
Graham_Gibson: Two teams that will likely be bowl eligible this year out of the Mountain West are Boise State and Fresno State. The Broncos and Bulldogs, based off of ESPNs Football Power Index (FPI) are expected to finish 10-3 and 8-4 respectively. Another safe bet from recent years is Air Force who is also projected to go 8-4. San Diego State is another team that has been bowl eligible since the 2010 season, not including the pandemic season in 2020. There are three teams that are projected to go 6-6 in Utah State, Hawaii, Wyoming, and San Jose State. It wouldn’t be surprising to see six bowl eligible Mountain West teams, but I think there are going to be seven teams in Boise State, Fresno State, San Diego State, Air Force, Wyoming, Hawaii, and San Jose State.
Mike: The Mountain West was deep last year, as evidenced by eight teams that ended up being selected for bowl games. This year I don’t see them able to repeat that amount but that doesn’t mean the overall number won’t be pretty substantial. In the Mountain division, Air Force, Boise State, and Utah State are near locks. Same with Fresno State and San Diego State in the West. Both San Jose State and Wyoming have pretty good shots at making a bowl game due to just enough talent with a favorable schedule. I think a seventh team gets in and it will be either Colorado State or UNLV, although neither are close to a sure thing. Seven teams from the MWC reaching a bowl would still mean the conference had a good year in 2022.