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WAC Football Preview 2009: News and notes from Day One

Karl Benson, esquire (via <a href=""></a>)
Karl Benson, esquire (via

Day One at the WAC Football Preview is in the books. Now it's time for WAC media to paint Salt Lake city red! Might I suggest the SLC TGI Friday's?

For the rest of us, here are some notes from Day One.

WAC commissioner Karl Benson loves the Broncos, but he doesn't have to like them right now

All this talk about Boise State leaving is bumming Benson out. In his state of the WAC address, he bared his soul to the room of reporters.

"It's distracting and disappointing at times, but I think that the interest shown by Boise State for the Mountain West has been done in a upfront manner and that is appreciated," Benson said. "It doesn't make it any less distracting or disappointing, but at least I think I know where some of my membership comes out when it comes to membership options."

Really, Benson has no choice but to sit back and take Boise State's MWC overtures like a man. He can't do anything about the Broncos in much the same way that the Broncos can't do anything about the WAC. What's Benson going to do? Get rid of them? Boise State is at worst the fourth team Benson should be considering getting rid of.

There are no stupid questions, unless they are questions about the Mountain West Conference

Benson followed up his Tuesday state of the WAC address with a Wednesday morning open forum. Bad idea.

(Benson) seemed perturbed on several occasions when asked about reports saying the Mountain West was 'targeting' Boise State as a team to add to its conference.

Benson accused the media of making that story up, saying he'd reviewed MWC Commissioner Craig Thompson's statements and talked to Thompson about it, and the issue of targeting any team for MWC expansion wasn't mentioned.

I can't imagine which non-qualified, hackneyed ESPN blogger he was talking about.

Rumor has it that things really got bad when someone asked Benson if he was saving himself for marriage.

And thus begins the annual tradition of Fresno State going to the Poinsettia Bowl

The WAC is close to finalizing a contract with the Poinsettia Bowl that could ensure a WAC team in the P-Bowl as early as 2010.

What does this mean for Boise State? It's hard to tell. So long as the WAC has bowl games in geographically sensible locations (Hawaii, Hawaii Bowl; Boise State, Humanitarian Bowl), I don't see them going to the system of "First place team goes here, second place team goes here." As such, Boise State can probably forget about a P-Bowl berth any time soon.

Still, it's a great deal for the WAC because it allows them to have another WAC-MWC matchup in postseason play (the H-Bowl is now 100% non-BCS, too, at least for this coming year). The P-Bowl would also be the conference's fourth guaranteed bowl, which stands to benefit every WAC team that dreams of bowl eligility (i.e., not Idaho).

If anything, I see the Poinsettia Bowl deal making Boise State to the Humanitarian Bowl that much more of a sure thing every year. The WAC sent the Broncos away previously so that they could fill guaranteed WAC slots with bowl eligible, non-sexy teams. With more guaranteed slots to go around, the Broncos might not get to go anywhere ever again unless it's a BCS bowl.

North Texas is totally getting the shaft

The WAC has no plans to expand to 10 teams. But would you like to ask Karl Benson another question about the MWC?

God does answer prayer; WAC officiating smote from the earth

This is the single biggest announcement that will be made this week at media days: WAC officials will no longer be ruining WAC games.

The WAC, MWC, C-USA, and Big 12 will pool their officials starting this season and a co-op crew will be sent to each league game. This means no more phantom holding penalties. No more four-hour flagfests. No more bumbling. Well, at least less bumbling. How is this news not printed on the front page of every paper in a WAC city? Why did I not lead my post with this information? What is this strange, airy feeling I have when I think about the future?

Go tell your friends. This is huge.

Kirby Moore is human, unlike his brother

The younger Moore has a broken foot. He may or may not be able to play against Oregon, and he may or may not be redshirted. Also, FB Andy Silsby is taking the year off to be with his injured knee. He will serve as a student assistant, nee waterboy.

Here's a good way to kill an entire evening

Watch the coach press conferences from today's WAC Football Preview.

Other miscellaneous things that I stole from Chadd Cripe

Thank you, Chadd.

  • Boise State's 2009 motto is Bleed Blue. OBNUG reader MKingery was first on the scene.
  • The media will be receiving Boise State's media guide electronically this season. The fans will be receiving ticket spam.
  • Fifty-three media members attended the WAC Football Preview. Sixteen of them were from the Boise area. I assume my invitation was lost in the mail.
  • Capital High OL Bryant Thomas, a member of BSU's 2009 recruiting class, will be the team's only grayshirt this year. Update your recruiting Excel files accordingly.