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MOSCOW, Idaho – It will be at least another month until the Western Athletic Conference announces its expansion plans. But Idaho athletic director Rob Spear has already made his feelings known – both to fellow conference members and the media – about which schools the WAC should pursue. Spear said Thursday that it’s critical, with the conference losing four members by July 2012, for the WAC to find more football-playing schools in the West. If he had his druthers, Montana and Montana State would move up to the FBS and join the WAC.
It will be at least another month until the Western Athletic Conference announces its expansion plans. But Idaho athletic director Rob Spear has already made his feelings known – both to fellow conference members and the media – about which schools the WAC should pursue.
LAS VEGAS – In the casino at the Orleans Hotel, banners still hung above the smoke touting the West Coast Conference tournament 24 hours after it ended – perhaps because more Gonzaga logo apparel remained at the craps and blackjack tables than Idaho, Nevada and New Mexico State combined. But when the Western Athletic Conference moved in for its basketball event in earnest Wednesday, the proper decorations finally went up.
Alex Green rushed for a school record 327 yards and three touchdowns, Bryant Moniz threw four touchdown passes and Hawaii beat New Mexico State 59-24 on Saturday in Las Cruces, N.M. Greg Salas caught 10 passes for 191 yards and a TD for the Warriors (9-3, 7-1). Hawaii is in a three-way tie for first place with Boise State and Nevada.
RENO, Nev. – Colin Kaepernick, Vai Taua and the rest of the 19th-ranked Nevada Wolf Pack are finally getting what they wanted: a chance to play No. 3 Boise State for a share of the Western Athletic Conference title. Kaepernick threw for 251 yards and two touchdowns and Taua ran for 111 yards and scored three times Saturday to lead Nevada past New Mexico State 52-6 and set up Friday night’s game in Reno against the undefeated defending champions.
Colin Kaepernick set a school record with two more rushing touchdowns, and Vai Taua’s third score of the night gave the 21st-ranked Nevada Wolf Pack a 35-34 win over the Fresno State Bulldogs on Saturday night in Fresno, Calif. Kaepernick ran for 152 yards and scored the 55th touchdown of his career for the Wolf Pack record.
The Western Athletic Conference is expected to announce today the addition of the University of Texas-San Antonio and Texas State University, along with the University of Denver as a non-football member. A person familiar with the decisions, speaking on condition of anonymity because final approval of the additions was still being worked out, told The Associated Press on Wednesday night that the three schools will become members of the WAC in 2012.
Deonte Jackson sifted through all the possibilities of Idaho’s biggest game of the season – a stunning Vandals upset, another Boise State laugher, somewhere in between – and he settled on the only option he could stomach. “(A win) would bring so much joy to me as a player,” the UI running back said, “and to see the pride return to this town and school, it would just be amazing.”
Colin Kaepernick passed for two touchdowns and rushed for another as Nevada defeated Utah State 56-42 on Saturday night in Reno, Nev. Mike Ball had three touchdowns for the Wolf Pack, who built a 35-0 halftime lead. Diondre Borel completed 24 of 38 passes for 399 yards and two touchdowns for Utah State, which rallied with a big second half but got no closer than 14 points. Borel also ran for a score.
RENO, Nev. – Nevada and Fresno State have agreed to play one more season in the Western Athletic Conference before transferring to the Mountain West Conference in 2012 and will pay significantly less to make the move than the WAC had demanded, the conference said Thursday. The two schools wanted to make the change next year, but WAC officials filed a lawsuit that said they failed to provide proper notice to leave the conference and would owe the WAC a $5 million departure fee.
The Western Athletic Conference is close to completing expansion plans that would bring Texas State and Texas-San Antonio into the conference for football beginning with the 2012 season, conference officials said. Denver and Seattle don’t play football but are strong candidates to join in other sports, including men’s basketball.
Quarterback Colin Kaepernick ran for a pair of first-quarter touchdowns and Vai Taua carried 16 times for 196 yards and three touchdowns – including a 73-yarder in the third quarter – to lead the 21st-ranked and unbeaten Nevada Wolf Pack to a 35-13 victory over the San Jose State Spartans in Western Athletic Conference play Saturday in Reno, Nev. Kaepernick finished with 91 yards on the ground on 17 carries and connected on 20 of 27 passes for 273 yards.
So now TCU and the Big East are making goo-goo eyes at one another. When did eHarmony get into the business of matching colleges and conferences? Was there really something so terribly wrong with the original concept of schools banding together out of like-minded missions and geography? And why don’t the Major Players – the 50 or 60 real heavyweights – just save us all the drama and declare themselves independents now, and then rendezvous later in new made-for-TV leagues?
MOSCOW, Idaho – When Robb Akey took over the Idaho football program four years ago, this must have been what he envisioned – the Kibbie Dome pulsating for a nationally televised game, and the Vandals’ defense flying around with as much energy as he exerts on the sideline. Saturday against UNLV, Idaho’s plan came together seamlessly from the start. It smothered the Rebels in a dominant first half and rolled to a 30-7 triumph in front of Dad’s Weekend crowd of 15,390.
MOSCOW, Idaho – When Robb Akey took over the Idaho football program four years ago, this must have been what he envisioned – the Kibbie Dome pulsating for a nationally televised game, and the Vandals’ defense flying around with as much energy as he exerts on the sideline. Saturday night against UNLV, Idaho’s plan came together seamlessly from the start. The Vandals smothered the Rebels in a dominant first half and rolled to a 30-7 triumph in front of Dad’s Weekend crowd of 15,390.
When the Idaho Vandals are done hanging their Humanitarian Bowl banner tonight, can they please pass the duct tape to Karl Benson? The commish needs it to try and keep the Western Athletic Conference together.
MOSCOW, Idaho – Before Fresno State and Nevada rocked the Western Athletic Conference by departing for the Mountain West, Idaho athletic director Rob Spear suspected something momentous was in the offing. The WAC had been in negotiations with BYU for weeks to join the conference in all sports but football. Losing a coveted member like the Cougars, Spear insisted, wasn’t going to sit well with Mountain West officials.
SALT LAKE CITY – Fresno State and Nevada are leaving the Western Athletic Conference for the Mountain West. The schools ended a wild Wednesday by announcing they are accepting invitations to join the Mountain West, which has added three prominent members of WAC in the last two months.