Mountain West Report: Davie keeps expectations in check with Lobos


Davie keeps expectations in check with lobos

Little was expected last year of New Mexico, a football program coming off three consecutive one-victory seasons.

Then new coach Bob Davie found a way to muster four victories and beat that three-year total in one season.

He downplayed whatever was accomplished by saying the program still had far to go, and he agreed this year with the Mountain West media predicting the Lobos to finish last in the Mountain Division.

But after opening the season with a 21-13 loss to Texas-San Antonio, New Mexico bounced back Saturday to beat Texas-El Paso 42-35 in overtime.

True, that’s not exactly beating Alabama, but the victory again proves Davie gets the most out of his talent.

The satisfaction of winning “is what got me back into coaching,” Davie, who spent 10 years as an ESPN/ABC game analyst, told the Albuquerque (N.M.) Journal. “If you could just capture that and sell what it is on the market, you’d make a pretty good penny.”

He went to the triple option last year, giving New Mexico an attack only Air Force uses in the Mountain West. The Lobos successfully execute that offense, serving as a possible thorn for conference opponents all season.

But Davie continued to temper expectations.

“Let’s be realistic,” he said. “We have to get better. If you like that (winning) feeling, there’s only one way to feel it again, and that’s to get better.”

AROUND THE LEAGUE

Air Force junior quarterback Kale Pearson is out for the season after tearing the anterior cruciate ligament and medial collateral ligament in his right knee. … The Mountain West suspended Hawaii special teams coordinator and safeties coach Chris Demarest for the Rainbow Warriors’ next game, Sept. 21 at UNR. Demarest was disciplined for what the conference termed “inappropriate actions on the sideline” Saturday at Oregon State. … A decision is expected today on whether New Mexico sophomore quarterback Cole Gautsche will play against Pittsburgh this weekend. He did not play against UTEP because of concussion symptoms. Even if he is cleared, Gautsche is expected to share time with junior college transfer Clayton Mitchem. … UNR junior quarterback Cody Fajardo is day to day with an injured right knee. … Wyoming junior cornerback Tyran Finley is out for the season after undergoing surgery on his right leg.

POWER RANKINGS

1. Fresno State (2-0, 0-0 MW). Last game: Defeated Cal Poly 41-25. Next game: At Colorado, Saturday. Last meeting: Won 69-14 in 2012.

2. Boise State (1-1, 0-0). Last game: Defeated Tennessee-Martin 63-14. Next game: Vs. Air Force, Friday. Won 37-26 in 2011.

3. Utah State (1-1, 1-0). Last game: Defeated Air Force 52-20. Next game: Vs. Weber State, Saturday. Last meeting: Won 54-17 in 2011.

4. San Jose State (1-1, 0-0). Last game: Lost to Stanford 34-13. Next game: At Minnesota, Sept 21. Last meeting: Won 39-30 in 1992.

5. Wyoming (1-1, 0-0). Last game: Defeated Idaho 42-10. Next game: Vs. Northern Colorado, Saturday. Last meeting: Won 103-0 in 1949.

6. Air Force (1-1, 0-1). Last game: Lost to Utah State 52-20. Next game: At Boise State, Friday. Last meeting: Lost 37-26 in 2011.

7. UNR (1-1, 0-0). Last game: Defeated UC Davis 36-7. Next game: At Florida State, Saturday. First meeting.

8. New Mexico (1-1, 0-0). Last game: Defeated Texas-El Paso 42-35 (OT). Next game: At Pittsburgh, Saturday. First meeting.

9. Colorado State (0-2, 0-0). Last game: Lost to Tulsa 30-27. Next game: Vs. Cal Poly, Saturday. First meeting.

10. San Diego State (0-2, 0-0). Last game: Lost to Ohio State 42-7. Next game: Vs. Oregon State, Sept. 21. Last meeting: Lost 35-3 in 2000.

11. UNLV (0-2, 0-0). Last game: Lost to Arizona 58-13. Next game: Vs. Central Michigan, Saturday. Last meeting: Won 52-24 in 1994.

12. Hawaii (0-2, 0-0). Last game: Lost to Oregon State 33-14. Next game: At UNR, Sept. 21. Last meeting: Lost 69-24 in 2012.

GAME OF THE WEEK

Air Force (1-1, 0-1 MW) at Boise State (1-1, 0-0). The Broncos aren’t as dominant this season as years past, but they should get better as the season progresses. No reason they can’t open conference play with a victory over an Air Force team in transition.

MARK ANDERSON/LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL

 

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