BCS Under the Gun, MAC, Not MWC, Comes Through

It's a real Horatio Alger, rags-to-riches, small-town-boy-makes-good-in-the-big-time tale.

An athletic conference struggles for years for recognition, always overshadowed by the "big boys." Demanding, but never getting respect. It's dismissed as a weak conference, dominated by one decent program in a pack of nobodies.

Finally, that dog has its day. Head-to-head. Mano-a-mano. The BCS versus the unwashed. And respect finally comes. Won between the lines; not in Congress.

It's a day many in Utah have been awaiting for years with bated breath. Unfortunately, that conference is… the Mid-American (MAC).

Toledo beats No. 11 Pitt, 35-31. Northern Illinois, having already dispatched No. 15 Maryland, downs Alabama 19-16. Marshall defeats No. 6 Kansas State 27-20. Miami (OH) dominates Colorado State 41-21. And Bowling Green barely loses to No. 4 Ohio State.

Meanwhile, around the poor old MWC:

BYU 14, Stanford 18.

Bonehead plays galore as BYU hands the Cardinal five turnovers and snatches defeat from the jaws of victory. A defense that held the visitors for 200 total yards was not enough to overcome ineptitude and outright blunders. John Beck, making his first start, is decent, but overthrows many an open receiver, and takes two sacks in four plays at first and goal.

Air Force 35, Wyoming 29.

An over-rated Falcon squad has to come from behind, at home, to beat a Cowboy team picked to finish last in the conference, giving up 486 yards to total offense in the process.

I can't wait to welcome Mr. Harridge to Provo.

CSU 21, Miami (OH) 41.

Colorado State, at home, held to 39 rushing yards on 29 attempts, and scored only 14 points after 55 minutes of play. Dominated by Miami (Ohio): first downs, 27-14; total offense 536-388; time of possession 35:48 to 24:12.

UNLV 33, Hawai'i 22.

Rebels avoid a letdown after drubbing Wisconsin two weeks ago. Hawai'i runs a balanced "attack" giving its host six turnovers – three fumbles in the first half and three interceptions in the second half.

UNM 13 at No. 24 Washington State 23

Washington State Cougars manage only one touchdown, but also get five field goals to put away the Lobos. New Mexico led 13-12 at the half, but were shut out thereafter, while Washington State scored its only touchdown on a 50-yard bomb on its first possession of the second half.

SDSU 37, Samford (I-AA) 17.

Yawn.

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