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Aggies face Wyoming with MWC title game berth on the line

Sports Editor

Published: Monday, November 25, 2013

Updated: Monday, November 25, 2013 22:11

Joey DeMartino

Delayne Ripplinger

Senior running back Joey DeMartino breaks a tackle during USU's 13-0 win over Colorado State on Saturday.

Tougher competition? No problem. Injury-plagued? Forget about it.

It may be the Utah State football team’s first season in the Mountain West Conference, but with a 7-1 conference record heading into the final weekend of the regular season, the Aggies are in control of their own destiny.

When USU hosts Wyoming on Saturday, the Cowboys will be playing for bowl eligibility. The Aggies will be playing for a spot in the first-ever MWC championship game.

“In the big picture, we know what we're playing for,” said USU head coach Matt Wells. “We've been talking about it since the Boise State game. I've got no problem talking big picture, but we'll narrow the focus down really quick. We want to finish the drill and be 1-0 against Wyoming. We'll look up Saturday and figure out what we're doing next week. I'm very proud of our guys for really being in the position to even talk about this.”

After posting a shutout victory over Colorado State on Saturday afternoon, the Aggies turned their attention to the Boise State vs. San Diego State game that night. Sitting tied atop the standings, USU needed a Bronco loss to take sole possession of first place in the Mountain Division.

Wells said he had several members of SDSU’s coaching staff text him to congratulate him on the win and promise to do their part that evening — a promise the Aztecs fulfilled.

SDSU took down Boise State 34-31 in overtime to hand the Broncos their second conference loss of the season. Now the Aggies need a win Saturday over the Cowboys to secure their place in the title game.

“It feels good. It’s like we have all the cards back in our hands,” said senior linebacker Jake Doughty. “Before we had to wait for something, for Boise State to get knocked off. Now the future is ours again. We just need to make plays and get going.”

Standing in USU’s way of punching a ticket to Fresno State on Dec. 7 is 5-6 Wyoming.

“Wyoming, we’ve got our hands full,” Doughty said. “Their offense looks good. They’re about 50-50 run and pass and they do both well. A big part of this game will be stopping the run and we’ll go from there.”

The Cowboys are ranked in the top-30 in both rushing and passing and are ranked 43rd nationally in scoring with 33.5 points per game, but have allowed opponents 36.8 points per game.

Kickoff is scheduled for noon on Saturday, Nov. 30 at Romney Stadium.

–curtislundstrom@gmail.com
Twitter: @CurtSport07 

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