We are back at it. And so was the Mountain West. But it’s time to face the facts; the conference is not having a good year. At this point, there isn’t a true top team, but there are a few good teams and a fair amount of bowl teams. The bottom of the league is filled with bad teams and every single team has been inconsistent thus far. With all of this, the MWCConnection Power Rankings are back for another week. Let us know what you like and what you don’t. Feel free to drop your own rankings in the comments section.
There is no #1 team. Some may critique that, but honestly. who would you put there? There is no true top team and that is reflected in the rankings.
T2) Air Force
The Falcons took an unexpected loss Friday night. They were missing some key players but their offense was mostly negated by a tough Wyoming defense. Air Force should bounceback and will still be one of the best teams in the conference. However, they have shown they are vulnerable, just like everyone else on this list.
T2) Fresno State
The Bulldogs have had a challenging schedule to start the year and their record reflects that. Still, it is easy to see their offense and defense can compete with anyone in the conference. That is, as long as Jake Haener and Evan Williams are on the field, so things could change in a hurry. It’s going to be extremely difficult for them to stay this high in the rankings while Haener is out.
3) Boise State
The Broncos have comfortably won their past two games, although it has been against lesser competition. It is clear through three games that their defense can play with anyone but their offense has no consistency or identity at this point. There is something to be said for finding ways to win and they have done that so far. But sooner rather than later, they are going to have to figure something out on offense.
Don’t look now but UNLV continues to pile up points. Sure it’s been Idaho State and North Texas, but have put up over 50 points in both contests. Although they only scored 14 in their loss to Cal but their defense showed up and they were in the game until the very end. It will still be interesting to see how the Rebels play once conference games start, but their offense seems legit.
5) San Diego State
The Aztecs are another team who has struggled on the offense, meaning it has overall been nonexistent. Predictably, they are not able to dominate the field battle on special teams, and because of that, San Diego State’s defense is not elite, just very good. And while they can run the ball well, being one-dimensional doesn’t fool many teams. Fortunately, they have the time and the talent to figure things out.
After a terrible opener, the Cowboys have won their past three games. While some wins haven’t been that impressive, the victory against Air Force sure was. It was the best their defense has played all season, which is hopefully a sign of things to come. An argument could be made for Wyoming to be higher on the list, but they still have question marks on both sides of the ball.
7) San Jose State
Bye week. No change to the paragraph below.
The Spartans showed a lot more life against Auburn, which is promising. They actually led at halftime and gave it everything they got. At this point, San Jose State is probably the team with the most unknown through two games. The consistencies are they don’t score a lot of points, but they don’t give up a ton of points either. Stay tuned.
8) New Mexico
The Lobos defense looks like it will keep them in games this season, and they have the players to run their personnel. They are beating up on the bad teams, now the next step is finding ways to stay in the game and even win against better competition. This will be especially important during conference play. For now, the execution is lacking at this point in their development. They have improved from last year though.
The Wolf Pack were playing with fool’s gold and were exposed two games ago and then ran into a Power 5 team this week. Between the lightning delays and the Hawkeye defense, Nevada was never able to get anything going. They weren’t expected to be good this season, so their wins so far and anything additional ones are a bonus.
10) Utah State
Bye week. No change to the paragraph below.
The Aggies are in a tailspin so far in the 2022 season. They had to come from behind to beat UConn, and then a beating from Alabama that would have happened to anyone. But then they got completely manhandled by Weber State, in a game that wasn’t even close. Their offense struggled mightily and the defense didn’t do much better. The fans weren’t the only ones who revealed their true colors this weekend.
Hawaii finally got a win. Sure it was against an average FCS opponent at home, but it was sorely needed. The Rainbow Warriors looked good, doing a lot of things well. The hope is that it allows them to figure out what works and scheme for their personnel. There is still a lot of season left and perhaps the Rainbow Warriors will be able to play with less pressure now that they have a win.
12) Colorado State
Things could not be worse for the Rams. They are the only team in the conference without a win. And frankly, it hasn’t really been close. Their highly-anticipated air-raid offense has been kept mostly grounded all year. And they were supposed to carry the defense this season. The offense line has struggled mightily, contributing to the offensive struggles. The honeymoon is officially over.