Welcome back to another edition of the MWCConnection Roundtable. This week, we revisit a classic question and one that is sure to generate a lot of debate and other opinions. For the 2023 football season, how many Mountain West teams will be bowl eligible? Also, who will they be?
Mike: The Mountain West has actually done a pretty good job sending teams to bowl games in recent seasons, and they should do the same again in 2023. It’s easy to see them get to four teams, with Air Force, Boise State, Fresno State, and San Diego State being as close to locks as once can get. Wyoming is a safe choice for a fifth team. Then, I think two from the group of Colorado State, San Jose State, UNLV, and Utah State. Personally, I’ll go with the Rams and Aggies, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it was the Spartans and Rebels. That gives me a total of seven teams. So seven, final answer.
Zach: It feels like this will be another yet where the Mountain West has a lot of good teams, but no great teams. I’m going to with seven teams. Boise State, Wyoming, Air Force, San Jose State, Fresno State, San Diego State, and Utah State. It wouldn’t shock me if Colorado State takes that last spot instead of the Aggies.
Jack: The Mountain West has had at least seven bowl eligible teams in each of the last four years. With how many quality rosters the conference has, I could really see eight teams getting a bowl berth. Boise State and Air Force will almost certainly get above six wins. Barring disaster, the same can be said for Fresno State and San Diego State. Utah State is in a great position in Blake Anderson’s third year at the helm. UNLV is also trending in the right direction to make its first bowl game since 2013. San Jose State has an elite offense, led by Chevan Cordeiro, giving me plenty of confidence that they’ll get a chance at postseason play. Colorado State has all the tools to take the next step, with stars on both sides of the ball. The MW sent eight teams bowling in 2021, could they do it again?
Matt: Our default setting seems to be 7 teams, so why change what works? Boise, AFA, Fresno, and SDSU are generally locks for bowl eligibility. San Jose State, Wyoming, and probably UNLV seem most poised to take the other three spots. Colorado State could easily make a run, or fall just short, same for the Aggies of USU. I think Nevada and Hawaii are a year away from really competing, and UNM seems destined to shuffle in the corner. We could end up anywhere between 6-8 schools, so might as well pick right in the middle with 7.