From its inception in 1999, the Mountain West Conference has been committed to excellence in intercollegiate athletics, while promoting the academic missions of its member institutions. Progressive in its approach, the MWC continues to cultivate opportunities for student-athletes to compete at the highest level, while fostering academic achievement and sportsmanship. Now in its 12th year, the MWC has been assertive in its involvement with the NCAA governance structure and has taken a leadership role in the overall administration of intercollegiate athletics.
The Mountain West Conference is noted for its geographic diversity. Some of the most beautiful terrain and landscapes in the nation can be found within Mountain West Conference boundaries, including the majestic Rocky Mountain range, which borders four MWC schools (Utah, BYU, Air Force and Colorado State). The high plains of Wyoming (elevation 7,220 feet – the highest Division I campus in the nation) contrast with the desert city of Las Vegas (the fastest growing metropolitan area in the West) and the Pacific Ocean locale of San Diego State. The southwestern flavor of New Mexico complements the western heritage and culture of Fort Worth, Texas, home of TCU.
The Mountain West Conference was conceived on May 26, 1998, when the presidents of eight institutions — Air Force, BYU, Colorado State, New Mexico, San Diego State, UNLV, Utah and Wyoming — decided to form a new NCAA Division I-A intercollegiate athletic conference. The split from the former 16-team conference re-established continuity and stability among the membership within the new league and signaled the continuation of its tradition-rich, long-standing athletic rivalries. Five of the MWC’s eight original members have been conference rivals since the 1960s (BYU, Utah, New Mexico, Wyoming, Colorado State), while San Diego State (1978) and Air Force (1980) were longtime members as well. UNLV entered the fold in 1996 and TCU began its first year of competition in 2005-06, completing the membership in the MWC as it stands today.
The MWC has produced 595 All-America selections among its 19 sponsored sports in the last 11 years, including a league-record 56 All-America honorees in 2009-10. A total of 110 MWC student-athletes have also earned Academic All-America accolades in that span, while 34 MWC student-athletes have earned NCAA Postgraduate Scholarships. The MWC has sent at least 30 teams to NCAA postseason events each of the past 11 years. Mountain West teams have captured three NCAA team championships over the last 11 years, with BYU claiming three national titles in women’s cross country.
Additionally, the MWC has produced 24 NCAA individual national champions in the sports of men’s golf, indoor track and field and outdoor track and field. Mountain West members have participated in 41 bowl games in 11 years, led by Utah’s 9-0 mark in postseason contests. The MWC has earned 50 postseason bids in men’s basketball, including 26 NCAA Tournament appearances and two NIT Final Four berths. MWC women’s basketball has tallied 51 postseason bids, including 29 NCAA bids, five Sweet 16 appearances and one Elite Eight berth since 2000. Wyoming won the MWC’s first WNIT championship in 2007 with a win over Wisconsin. In women’s volleyball, the MWC has had 31 NCAA bids with eight Sweet 16 berths and one Elite Eight appearance. Women’s soccer has earned 23 NCAA bids since 1999, with BYU advancing to the Sweet 16 in 2000 and the Elite Eight in 2003. MWC men’s golf has had at least four representatives in each of the last 11 NCAA Golf Regionals, while women’s tennis has had at least two teams participate in NCAA Regionals each of the last 10 years.
The MWC television package will continue to reach a national audience in 2010-11 through a combination of telecasts on The MountainWest Sports Network (The Mtn.), CBS College Sports Network and VERSUS. The Mtn. is available to cable subscribers throughout the Western U.S. and nationally through DirectTV and Comcast.
The MWC has remained steadfast in its mission to promote the league’s athletic events to national and regional television audiences and will continue to grow its new TV model. Nearly 25,000 hours of MWC programming have aired on The Mtn. since the network's launch.
For the third consecutive year, the MWC sent a record five football teams to bowl games, posting the best win percentage among the 11 FBS conferences for the third time in six years. The Mountain West finished with a 4-1 (.800) mark in postseason play and claimed the 2009-10 Bowl Challenge Cup, becoming the only conference to win the trophy three times since the award’s inception in 2002-03. Three MWC teams were ranked in the final BCS Standings, Associated Press and USA Today/ESPN Coaches polls for the second straight year. TCU’s No. 4 BCS ranking marked the highest finish by a nonautomatic- qualifying team in the final BCS Standings, surpassing Utah’s No. 6 ranking in both 2004 and 2008. The Horned Frogs’ automatic bid to the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl marked the MWC’s third BCS bowl game since 2004.
In both 2008 and 2009, the Mountain West has had three teams ranked in the final Top-25 national polls.
The MWC was one of three conferences (Big Ten, SEC) with two teams ranked in the top 12 of the final 2009 polls. It also marked the second consecutive year the Mountain West finished a season with a team ranked in the Top 10.
Over the past six seasons (including 2009), the MWC owns the best win percentage in bowl games among the 11 FBS conferences with an 18-8 mark (.692). The SEC is second with a 31-17 (.646) record, followed by the Big East at 19-12 (.613) and the Pac-10 at 20-14 (.588). The MWC also is 9-3 against BCS automatic-qualifying conferences in bowl games since 2004.
The Mountain West was one of two conferences that had three teams with double-digit wins in 2009 (TCU-12, BYU-11 and Utah-10). The Big Ten had four teams with double-digit wins.2009 FINAL MOUNTAIN WEST CONFERENCE STANDINGS
The MWC became the first non-automatic-qualifying BCS conference to have three teams ranked all eight weeks of the BCS Standings in 2008. The MWC was one of three conferences with at least three teams ranked in the top 16 (Big 12 - 4, SEC - 3) of the final standings - Utah ranked No. 6, TCU 11th and BYU at No. 16. The MWC is the first non-automatic-qualifying conference in the BCS era to have three teams ranked in the top 25 of the final Associated Press and USA Today Coaches’ polls. It is also the first time two teams have finished in the top 10 (Utah No. 2 and TCU No. 7). Three MWC teams ranked among the top 20 in the national polls for eight consecutive weeks during the regular season.
|NUMBER OF TEAMS IN 2009 FINAL BCS STANDINGS BY CONFERENCE|
|PAC 10||5 Teams||(7) Oregon, (18) Oregon St., (20) Arizona, (21)Stanford, (24) USC|
|BIG 10||4 Teams||(8) Ohio State, (10) Iowa., (13) Penn St. (25) Wisconsin|
|BIG 12||3 Teams||(2) Texas, (19) Oklahoma State, (22) Nebraska|
|MWC||3 Teams||(4) TCU, (14) BYU, (23) Utah,|
|SEC||3 Teams||(1) Alabama,( 5) Florida, (12) LSU|
|ACC||3 Teams||(9) Georgia Tech, (11) Virginia Tech, (15) Miami|
|BIG EAST||3 Teams||(3) Cincinnati, (17) Pittsburgh, (16) West Virginia|
|WAC||1 Team||(6) Boise State|
For the third time in six years, the MWC posted the best win percentage among the
11 FBS conferences. The Mountain West claimed the 2009-10 Bowl Challenge Cup after sending five teams into postseason action and finishing with a 4-1 (.800) mark. The league earned its first Bowl Challenge Cup after registering a 2-1 record in bowl competition during the 2004-05 season. The MWC also won the Cup in 2007-08 with a 4-1 mark and is the only conference to win the trophy three times since the award’s inception in 2002-03.
|MOUNTAIN WEST||4-1 (.800)|
|Big East||4-2 (.667)|
|Big 10||4-3 (.571)|
|Big 12||4-4 (.500)|
|Sun Belt||1-1 (.500)|
For the third consecutive year, the Mountain West Conference sent a record five
teams into postseason bowl games. The Mountain West has earned 41 bowl bids
since 1999 and holds a 25-16 all-time record in those games, including a 9-3 mark
against BCS automatic-qualifying conferences since 2004.
2010 Armed Forces Bowl
Thursday, December 30, 2010
Fort Worth, Texas
ESPN 10:00 a.m. (MST)
Mountain West #4/#5 vs C-USA
2010 MAACO Bowl Las Vegas
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Las Vegas, Nevada
Sam Boyd Stadium
ESPN 6:00 p.m. (MST)
Mountain West #1vs Pac-10 #4/#5
2010 Poinsettia Bowl
Thursday, December 23, 2010
San Diego, California
ESPN 6:00 p.m. (MST)
Mountain West #2 vs Navy/WAC
2010 New Mexico Bowl
Saturday, December 19, 2010
Albuquerque, New Mexico
ESPN 2:30 p.m. (MST)
Mountain West #4/#5 vs WAC
2010 INdependence Bowl
Monday, December 27, 2010
TBD 3:00 p.m. (MST)
Mountain West #3 vs ACC
2010 Bowl Championship Series
January 1 – Rose Bowl
January 4 – Sugar Bowl
January 1 – Fiesta Bowl
January 3 – Orange Bowl
January 10 – BCS National Championship