Five questions to preview the 2010 football season for the Western Athletic Conference.
1. Who will win the conference? Boise State Broncos. No surprise here. The Broncos return 21 starters off of last year’s perfect team. If Boise State does not win the conference, someone will have a lot of explaining to do.
2. Who is the top returning player? Kellen Moore, Boise State. Moore had the second highest pass efficiency rating in the nation last year, and he passed for 3,536 yards with a 39:3 touchdown to interception ratio. Moore also boasts a 26-1 record as a starter.
3. Who will be the most improved team? The Louisiana Tech Bulldogs. Three of Louisiana Tech’s conference losses (Utah State, Idaho, and Fresno State) were by a combined total of five points. They also played Boise State close last year (10 point loss). It also helps that there are no SEC teams on the schedule (Auburn and LSU last year).
4. What will be the biggest surprise? Boise State will play in the BCS National Championship game. With a number 5 preseason ranking in the USA Today Top 25, Boise State is in prime position to move into the top 2 as the teams ahead of them drop games. A win over Virginia Tech, a squad that has high expectations as well, to start the year followed by a perfect run through the rest of the schedule (which includes Oregon State) and the computers won’t be able to hold Boise State back.
5. Which coach is on the hottest seat? No coach in the WAC is on a very hot seat. Either the coaches are new to their posts or they are having success. The one with the hottest seat is probably Chris Ault at Nevada. Hard to imagine that his seat is the hottest. He has won over 200 games in 25 years with the Wolfpack. He is a member of the College Football Hall of Fame, and he played quarterback for Nevada back in the 1960s. However, he has failed to get Nevada over the hump (beat Boise State). Nevada can’t let complacency settle in on the program. Ault turns 64 in November. If he can’t get it done this year, and with Nevada moving on to the tougher Mountain West Conference soon, Nevada may create an administrative position in the athletics department for Coach Ault so they can try and find a guy who can get Nevada to the next level.