MOUNTAIN WEST CHAMPIONSHIP GAME NOTES
December 3, 2013INDIANA SPORTS PAGE
COUNTDOWN TO THE INAUGURAL MW CHAMPIONSHIP GAME
Fresno State will host Utah State in the inaugural Mountain West Football Championship Game on Saturday, Dec. 7 at Bulldog Stadium in Fresno, Calif. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. PT and the game will be televised on CBS. The Bulldogs (7-1 MW, 10-1 overall) clinched the West Division on Nov. 23 with their 69-28 victory over New Mexico. The Aggies (7-1 MW, 8-4 overall) captured the Mountain Division with their 35-7 victory over Wyoming last Saturday. The Bulldogs, under second-year head coach Tim DeRuyter, are playing for their second straight Mountain West title. DeRuyter has posted a 19-5 record in his two seasons at Fresno State. The Aggies are under the guidance of first-year head coach Matt Wells and are in their first season in the Mountain West. Utah State earned its first league crown since 1936 last season with a 6-0 mark in Western Athletic Conference play. The 2013 MW Football Championship Game will feature the Mountain West’s top ranked offense against the league’s best defense. Fresno State leads the Mountain West in scoring offense (47.3 points per game) and total offense (580.6 yards per game), while Utah State is the Conference leader in scoring defense (16.8 points per game) and total defense (321.4 yards per game). Fresno State and Utah State did not meet during the 2013 regular season. The Bulldogs lead the all-time series with the Aggies 16-10-1. Fresno State has won five in a row versus Utah State, including a 31-21 victory on Oct. 15, 2011 in Fresno.
FRESNO STATE: MOUNTAIN DIVISION CHAMPIONS
23rd-ranked Fresno State is currently 10-1 on the season and won the West Division with a 7-1 record. The Bulldogs won a share of the Mountain West title in their first season in the league last year and look to win back-to-back Conference championships for the first time since 1992 and 1993. Fresno State has currently won 12 in a row at home, its longest win streak at Bulldog stadium since capturing 17-straight from 1998-2001. A victory in the MW Championship Game would be the 11th of the season for the Bulldogs, matching the school record for wins in a season that has been done four times before, the last time coming in 2001.
UTAH STATE: WEST DIVISION CHAMPIONS
Utah State is currently 8-4 on the season and won the Mountain Division with 7-1 mark. The Aggies enter the Mountain West Championship game on a five-game win streak and have won 11 straight road games against league opponents. Utah State is looking to win its second-straight outright league championship and fourth overall in school history. With eight victories on the year, Utah State has posted three straight winning seasons for the first time since 1978-80. The Aggies seven conference victories this season are a program record, surpassing the six conference victories posted in 1936 and 2012.