Mountain West announces football championship game, divisions

DENVER, COLORADO (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Mountain West Conference today made several announcements prompted by the new 12-team football alignment and 11-institution configuration in all other sports beginning with the 2013-14 academic year.

The league's directors of athletics formed two football divisions based upon common geographic regions and traditional rivalries, while also creating the first Mountain West football championship game. The group also established schedule models for men's and women's basketball and received an update on the implementation of the recently announced Mountain West Digital Network.

The new football alignments will feature:

Mountain Division:

Air Force
Boise State
Colorado State
New Mexico
Utah State

West Division:

Fresno State
San Diego State
San Jose State

Each team will play five divisional games and three cross-divisional contests annually. The actual rotational sequence and matchups will be developed via computer scheduling models.

The inaugural Mountain West Football Championship game will be played December 7, 2013 at the home stadium of the team with the highest BCS ranking.

The Warriors have long and storied rivalries with each of West Division members, including Fresno State, which the teams have played 45 times in a series that began in 1938. UH and San Diego State were longtime members of the Western Athletic Conference from 1979-98. Hawai'i and UNLV have met 22 times, including eight meetings since 2000. Hawai'i and San Jose State were traditional rivals prior to conference affiliation while UH and Nevada began its series in 1920.

There will not be divisions for Mountain West men's and women's basketball.

The teams will play an 18-game Conference schedule that will include home and home games with eight opponents and single-play games against a rotation of two remaining teams in the Conference.

The group also discussed various format options for the postseason men's and women's basketball championships and scheduling formats for 2013 and beyond in all other sports. The Olympic sports scheduling formats are currently being reviewed by the respective coaches groups, who will then provide recommendations via the Mountain West governance structure.

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