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Mountain West Coaches Talk Anonymously About Conference Foes for 2017


It's not easy getting college football coaches to honestly comment on another coach, player or team. Most coaches don't want to give opposing teams billboard material, which is why there is a lot of coach speak or overused clichés used during the year.

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In order to get an accurate assessment of teams heading into 2017, Athlon asked coaches in the Mountain West to talk anonymously about their opponents.

Related: Mountain West 2017 Predictions

Note: These scouting reports come directly from coaching staffs and do not necessarily reflect the views of Athlon's editorial staff.

Mountain West Coaches Anonymously Scout Conference Foes

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Air Force

“A lot of coaches expected Troy Calhoun to be gone by now.”

“They’ve achieved what Navy has, where the turnover on roster doesn’t matter.”

“The system is going now and they’re just going to reload.”

“You know what you’re getting but it’s still hard to stop them.”

Related: Mountain West Football 2017 All-Conference Team

College Football Top 25 Rankings: Boise State

Boise State

“No one is buying that they’ve fallen off.”

“Even with SDSU winning titles Boise is still the program to beat on the field and off.”

“They haven’t had that big headline-type of season with [Bryan] Harsin, but he took them to the Fiesta.”

“We expect their youth will show, but they’re dangerous with Brett Rypien.

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Colorado State

“Look for Mike Bobo’s recruiting in the Southeast to really start showing up on the field.”

“CSU has stepped up their caliber of athlete.”

“With the new stadium and Denver being close by they [the Rams] can be a really dangerous program.

Related: Ranking All 130 College Football Teams for 2017

College Football Rankings: Fresno State

Fresno State

“A mess right now.”

“Jeff Tedford is a great coach but don’t expect a miracle in 2017.”

“They still need to find a QB and build from there.”

“This is a program that needs to be more competitive to help the entire conference to earn respect nationally.”

College Football Rankings: Hawaii


“A surprise team only if you don’t pay attention to them.”

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“Nick Rolovich knows the dynamic out there and what he’s in for with that job, but he can get them motivated and they can play offense.”

“You only win there if you truly understand and work with how unique that job is.”

Related: College Football Bowl Projections for 2017

College Football Rankings: Nevada


“It will be really interesting to watch Jay Norvell take a program famous for running the football out of the Pistol and go all-in with an Air Raid attack.”

“There’s some risk but the school wants something big and bold.”

“Jeff Casteel’s 3-3-5 could be a huge hit with the personnel in this league.”

College Football Rankings: New Mexico

New Mexico

“They’re the last team you want to see after playing a long road game.”

“They can absolutely wear you out.”

“If you show me someone who thought anyone could make the old Bill Yeoman veer work out there they’re lying.”

“Bob Davie deserves a huge amount of credit.”

Related: Ranking All 130 College Football Head Coaches for 2017

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San Diego State

“The Pumphrey kid [Donnel] is gone now but they’re still a deep offense.”

“Christian Chapman is solid and they’re good enough to win the title again this year.”

“They’ve got a chance to make national noise like Boise has before them.”

College Football Rankings: San Jose State

San Jose State

“The best move they could make was going with a [Mike] MacIntyre assistant in [new head coach] Brent Brennan. He's a real high-energy guy.”

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“Still a major work in progress.”

“Tony Sanchez is basically building a program from scratch in a place that was decades behind.”

“They’re not where they need to be yet but we expect them to be better on offense.”

Related: Examining the Over/Under 2017 Win Totals for the Mountain West

College Football Rankings: Utah State

Utah State

“2016 wasn’t what you’d expect from Matt Wells.”

“That’s a football team more talented and just plain better than their record.”

“There’s pressure on him to win immediately again but that’s only because of the standard he created.”

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“Josh Allen can be a star quarterback in this league.”

“Wyoming had a strong season last year but there’s extra difficulty putting back to back winning seasons together in a program like that.”

“It’s so hard to get talent out there but Craig Bohl is building consistency.”

(Top photo courtesy of