Boises bowl game has some enticing options from the WAC (first choice) and Mid-American Conference (third choice). It also faces an uncertain future with the loss of WAC football next season and the MAC and ESPN contracts expiring after next season. Tickets for this years game, which is Dec. 15, are on sale through idahotickets.com.
Question: When you look at the MAC, you must be optimistic about the options.
Answer: Were real excited that there are two really, three strong teams out of the WAC with La. Tech, Utah State and San Jose State. And in the MAC, there seems to be four or five really strong teams between Northern Illinois, Kent State, Toledo, Ohio, Ball State and even Bowling Green.
Q: Having so many options, what are your priorities?
A: We want to have teams that have had great seasons, teams with excited fan bases and we definitely want some star power.
Q: Any chance of a game between Louisiana Tech and the MAC champion?
A: Probably not. It could work out that way, but the contract agreement for this year inside the MAC is that Detroit (Little Caesars) gets that first selection. If the stars all lined up, they might pass on the MAC champion. It almost could happen accidentally, but it would be hard to do by design. The easiest way for us really to do that would be if Utah State were the team that ran the table in the conference.
Q: You expect Louisiana Tech to go elsewhere?
A: When you look at the geography, La. Tech would probably rather play where their fans could go to the game.
Q: Youre OK with not getting the WAC champ?
A: Weve already had this conversation with La. Tech folks and the conference folks. If La. Tech were to win, wed want to really evaluate opportunities for La. Tech. The conference and the school would, to try to keep them somewhere in the Southeast.
Q: And there are options out there?
A: Yeah. Theres five or six bowls that are not going to be able to fill their contracts.
Q: You said star power. Who do you like out there?
A: The quarterback at Northern Illinois is one of the leading rushers in the country. Hes a very Chandler Harnish-type at quarterback. It looks like they just reloaded. The running back at Toledo (David Fluellen), now I think hes leading the nation in rushing. There are two really great running backs at Kent State. On the WAC side, youve got (Utah State quarterback Chuckie Keeton) playing really well. And (wide receiver Quinton) Patton at La. Tech.
Q: Looks like you could maybe get a couple 10-win teams, right?
A: Were going to have nine-win teams if not 10-win teams.
Q: Have you gone to watch some MAC teams?
A: I was in Ohio this week. I saw the Toledo game and then went down to Athens and saw the Ohio game (both lost). They dont want me there any more. Im going to see Northern Illinois-Toledo next Wednesday.
Q: What do you see happening with this bowl in the next two or three years?
A: Were really focused in on the Mountain West and the Big East and really feel like that needs to be our home base going forward. Our most natural fit is the Mountain West. They offer the most teams to us. We already have been in conversation with the MAC. They want to extend and we have a high level of interest in extending. We feel like well be tied to one of the conferences we hope the Mountain West in the West. And wed look at the MAC and maybe look at a Big East West (division).