Bronco Beat

Wyoming upsets San Diego State in wild MW game; Boise State’s division hopes take hit

San Diego State running back Donnel Pumphrey is tackled by Wyoming defensive back Marcus Epps during the first half Saturday in Laramie, Wyo.
San Diego State running back Donnel Pumphrey is tackled by Wyoming defensive back Marcus Epps during the first half Saturday in Laramie, Wyo.

Boise State had a chance at entering next week in the driver’s seat for the Mountain Division title, but the Wyoming Cowboys spoiled it with another impressive win at War Memtorial Stadium in Laramie.

Wyoming stopped a San Diego State two-point conversion with no time remaining to win 34-33, ending the Aztecs’ 17-game winning streak over Mountain West teams. The Cowboys beat Boise State 30-28 on Oct. 29 in Laramie. It was an even more tense ending as the Aztecs scored on a Hail Mary with time expired, upheld after a length review by officials.

The Cowboys (8-3) outrushed the Aztecs (9-2) 205-178, led by junior running back Brian Hill’s 131 yards and two touchdowns. San Diego State’s Donnel Pumphrey, the nation’s top rusher, was held to 76 yards on 17 carries.

Had the Cowboys lost, a Boise State win Friday at Air Force would have given them the Mountain Division. Now, if Wyoming beats New Mexico next Saturday, the Cowboys will face the Aztecs again in the Mountain West championship.

If Boise State loses to Air Force, New Mexico beats Colorado State on Saturday night and beats Wyoming next week, the Lobos win the division.

A Boise State win at Air Force and a Wyoming loss at New Mexico would create a tie atop the division between the Broncos and Lobos should the Lobos win Saturday against Colorado State. Boise State beat New Mexico on Oct. 7, thus giving the Broncos the division.

If all three have two Mountain West losses, Wyoming would win the division. The tiebreakers go as follows: “Winning percentage in games played among the tied teams; Winning percentage in games played against division opponents; Winning percentage against the next highest‐placed team in the division (based upon the team's record in all games played in the Conference), proceeding through the division.” In that scenario, the teams all would have gone 1-1 against each other, Boise State and New Mexico would have two divisional losses, with Wyoming having only one.

Boise State plays at Air Force at 1:30 p.m. Friday on CBS Sports Network and Wyoming plays at New Mexico at 8:15 p.m. Saturday on ESPN2 or ESPNU.


In case you missed it, Boise State senior linebacker Tanner Vallejo will miss the rest of the season after having wrist surgery. Vallejo suffered the injury Sept. 24 at Oregon State and did not play the next week against Utah State. He is second on the team with 69 tackles in nine games.

“It was just time,” Boise State coach Bryan Harsin said. “He played with it, but couldn’t do much with it. It was one of those decisions where it’s time for him. I think he did everything he could possibly do this season under those conditions.”