Around the Mtn: It all comes down to this
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo., -- It all comes down to this.
Five teams are still alive with a shot at claiming the division title and playing in the Mountain West Championship game Saturday Dec. 4.
On the Mountain side, either Air Force, Utah State or Boise State will be crowned this weekend. Here's how those tiebreakers work:
* Air Force wins if: All three of these teams win, the Falcons are in because they own the ultimate tiebreaker. If not, they would need a Utah State loss at New Mexico.
* Utah State wins if: The Aggies win and Boise State falls at San Diego State
* Boise State wins if: The Broncos win and the Falcons lose at home to UNLV.
On the West side of the bracket, just San Diego State and Fresno State are still alive. If, the Aztecs take down the Broncos Saturday, and the Bulldogs lose at San Jose State, they are in. It's the same scenario for Fresno State.
The 'Dogs own the tiebreaker with a 30-20 road victory over SDSU back on Oct. 30.
Here are some other news and notes from around the Mountain West Conference:
* Air Force (8-3), Boise State (7-4), Fresno State (8-3), Nevada (7-4), San Diego State (10-1), Utah State (8-3) and Wyoming (6-5) are bowl eligible. The MW’s seven bowl eligible teams are tied for the fourth-most amongst the 10 FBS conferences, trailing only the ACC, Big Ten and SEC. 2021 marks the third time in the last four season the Conference has had seven bowl-eligible teams.
* San José State can reach bowl eligibility with a victory over Fresno State on Nov. 25.
* The Mountain West is home to four teams with at least eight wins this season, which is tied for the third-most among all 10 FBS conferences, trailing only the Big Ten and SEC (5). The MW’s four teams are also the most among the Non-Autonomous 5 conferences.
* San Diego State has reached the double-digit win mark for the fifth time in seven years and is one of just 12 FBS teams with at least 10 victories in 2021.
* Air Force owns the nation’s best rushing attack, averaging 325.4 yards per game on the ground. Defensively, the Falcons rush defense ranks No. 6 nationally (95.4 yards allowed). The Falcons join Wisconsin as the only two FBS programs to rank in the top-10 nationally in rushing offense and rushing defense.
* In 2021, the Mountain West has five victories over autonomous-5 opponents, the most of any non-autonomous-5 conference. Including all 10 FBS conferences, the MW is tied for the third-most A5 victories with the ACC, and trails only the Big Ten and SEC.
* This season, the Mountain West has a pair of nonconference victories over nationally-ranked opponents, including Fresno State’s win over then-No. 13/13 UCLA and Boise State’s defeat over then-No. 10/10 BYU. The MW is tied for fourth nationally with two victories against top-25 nonconference opponents, trailing only the Big 12, Big Ten and SEC (3).
* The Mountain West is one of just two FBS conferences with at least two nonconference victories against top-15 opponents (SEC - 3).
* The league has a .500 record against opponents from the Pac-12 in 2021.
* Boise State and Fresno State both have two top-25 victories.
* The Broncos went on the road and defeated No. 10/10 BYU (26-17) on Oct. 9 and won at No. 25 Fresno State (40-14) on Nov. 6.
* The Bulldogs defeated No. 13/13 UCLA (40-37) on Sept. 18 and No. 20/21 San Diego State (30-20) on Oct. 30. Both wins came on the road, marking the first season Fresno State has earned a pair of road top-25 victories.
* In nonconference play, the Mountain West has compiled a 30-19 (.612) record, the fifth-best win percentage nationally and best among the non-autonomous-5 conferences.
* San Diego State and Fresno State have both been nationally ranked at some point in 2021. This is the sixth-consecutive season at least two Mountain West programs have been nationally ranked.
* San Diego State opened the 2021 season with a pair of victories over autonomous-5 opponents, including Pac-12 South Division leader Utah and Arizona. The Aztecs are the only non-autonomous-5 team with multiples wins over autonomous-5 opponents this season.
* On Oct. 16 against UNLV, Utah State senior Savon Scarver tied the NCAA and Mountain West record for career kickoff returns for a touchdown (7).
* Aggies senior WR Deven Thompkins leads the nation in receiving yards per game, averaging 137.1 yards and total receiving yards (1,508). Thompkins is 31 yards shy of entering the MW’s top-five in single-season receiving yards.
* Dating back to the 2019 season, the Mountain West has won 16 games against autonomous-5 opponents, including 14 against the Pac-12.
* In the past 17 years, the Mountain West has been the top nonautonomous 5 conference nine times and second five times.
* The Mountain West has been nationally-ranked in 24 of the last 31 College Football Playoff Rankings.
* The Mountain West produced the first non-automatic-qualifying FBS team into a BCS bowl game (Utah - 2005 Fiesta Bowl) and into the College Football Playoff (Boise State - 2014 Fiesta Bowl).