THIS WEEK’S GAMES TO WATCH FOR: The Mountain West Conference takes over Friday night football again with two league games on tap. San Diego State visits Utah State (6 p.m. MT on CBS Sports Network) looking to extend its nationally-best conference win streak to 15 games. Air Force and Fresno State will play on ESPN2 at 8:30 p.m. MT. Both teams are looking to snap their losing skids as the Falcons are in the midst of a three-game streak and the Bulldogs a six-game slide. Fresno State relieved head coach Tim DeRuyter of his duties Sunday, handing the reigns to offensive coordinator Eric Kiesau as the interim. The MW concludes week 9 Saturday evening with three league games including No. 13 Boise State at Wyoming. The Broncos aims for their 11th consecutive victory over the Cowboys in as many tries, playing in Laramie at 5 p.m. MT (CBS Sports Network). Both New Mexico and Hawai`i are two wins shy of bowl eligibility, facing off at 10 p.m. MT in Honolulu.
Conference USA has six league games slated for Saturday, beginning with WKU at Florida Atlantic. Four games (Middle Tennessee at FIU, Rice at Louisiana Tech, Marshall at Southern Miss, and North Texas at UTSA) are all kicking off at 5 p.m. MT and available for viewing online. Concluding the night for C-USA is Old Dominion at UTEP (6 p.m. MT on C-USA TV). For a complete schedule with series notes, see page 1.
POSTSEASON OUTLOOK: The eighth week of the 2016 college football season is in the books and there are 20 teams eligible for a bowl game. The ACC, Big Ten and Pac-12 have three eligible teams each. The American, Big 12, MAC, Mountain West, and SEC each have two teams ready to bowl while the Sun Belt has one. There are still 105 teams that could possibly get eligible and three (Bowling Green, Fresno State and UMass) have been eliminated.
For our partner conferences, the Mountain West’s Boise State was the first to become eligible with a victory in week 7. With a win last weekend, San Diego State was the first from the league’s West Division to become eligible. Wyoming could pick up the necessary six wins this weekend if it can best Boise State for the first time in program history. On the flip side, San José State finds itself in a must-win situation with a 2-6 record and just four games remaining.
For Conference USA, Louisiana Tech, Middle Tennessee and WKU are one victory away from the six required for a bowl bid. Florida Atlantic and Rice are both 1-6 overall and in a must-win situation with four games left. Both leagues have commitments to six bowls, including the Gildan New Mexico Bowl.