WHAT'S ON TAP IN THE WAC - Every team except Texas State is in action on Saturday. Idaho travels to No. 2 LSU while UTSA, New Mexico State and Utah State are also on the road. Louisiana Tech hosts Rice and San Jose State welcomes Colorado State in the only WAC home games. Louisiana Tech has won eight straight regular season games while Utah State takes its seven-game regular season winning streak to Wisconsin.
OF THE WEEK
OFFENSIVE - Utah State quarterback Chuckie Keeton, a sophomore from Houston, Texas (Cypress Creek HS), completed 22-of-32 passes for 216 yards and two touchdowns with no interceptions in the Aggies' 27-20 overtime win against Utah. Keeton also rushed for a career-high 86 yards on 17 carries, including a 23-yard scramble in overtime to set up the winning touchdown. The win snapped a 12-game losing streak against the Utes.
DEFENSIVE - San Jose State defensive end Travis Johnson, a senior from Sunnyvale, Calif. (King's Academy), tied a WAC and school-record with six tackles for a loss of 46 yards in San Jose State's 45-13 win over UC Davis. He also tied a school-record with four sacks for a loss of 25 yards and finished the game with a total of eight tackles (7 solo). Johnson is the nation's active leader in career sacks with 23.0.
SPECIAL TEAMS - Utah State punter Tyler Bennett, a senior from Phoenix, Ariz. (Phoenix CC), punted a career-high nine times for an average of 45.3 yards per punt in the game against Utah. He had a long of 59 yards and had four punts downed inside the 20-yard line.
Others nominated on offense:
Tevin King, Fr., RB, Louisiana Tech - rushed for 112 yards and three touchdowns on 13 carries in the win at Houston. He also caught four passes for 44 yards.
De'Leon Eskridge, Sr., RB, San Jose State - rushed for a career-high 130 yards and three touchdowns on 16 carries in the win over UC Davis. He scored two of his touchdowns in a 28-second span late in the second quarter.
Also nominated on defense:
IK Enemkpali, Jr., DL, Louisiana Tech - had two sacks for a loss of 19 yards and forced a fumble in the game at Houston.
Blake Terry, So., LB, UTSA - registered a career-high 11 tackles and assisted on two sacks on the same series of downs in the win over Texas A&M-Commerce.
Bojay Filimoeatu, Sr., LB, Utah State - recorded a career-high 12 tackles, including 2.5 for a loss (1 sack), in the overtime win against Utah.
Additional special teams nominations:
Matt Nelson, Sr., PK, Louisiana Tech - made all eight of his extra point attempts and is second in school history with 133 for his career.
WAC TOP NON-AQ CONFERENCE - After two weeks of play, the WAC is the top non-automatic qualifying conference according to the ESPN Stats & Information College Football Conference Power Rankings. The WAC has a rating of 22.2, trailing the Big East (32.2), but ahead of the Mountain West (20.4), MAC (19), Conference USA (17.2) and Sun Belt (17).
WAC PLAYERS EARN WEEKLY HONORS - The College Football Performance Awards honored San Jose State defensive end Travis Johnson as its National Defensive Performer of the Week following his game against UC Davis. (He was also named the Defensive Lineman of the Week.) New Mexico State's Akeelie Mustafa was one of three players named the Kickoff Returner of the Week following his 91-yard return for a touchdown at Ohio.LOUISIANA TECH-HOUSTON SET RECORDS - Louisiana Tech's 56-49 win over Houston on Saturday saw four NCAA records broken. The Bulldogs and Cougars broke NCAA records for most plays run by both teams (regulation), most first downs recorded by both teams, most combined completed passes and most combined pass attempts without an interception.
MOST PLAYS, BOTH TEAMS (REGULATION)
Old Record: 196-San Diego State (99) & North Texas (97), Dec. 4, 1971 (851 yards)
New Record: 209 - Louisiana Tech (94) & Houston (115), Sept. 8, 2012 (1,291 yards)
FIRST DOWNS, BOTH TEAMS
Old Record: 72-New Mexico (37) & San Diego State (35), Sept. 27, 1986
New Record: 78 - Louisiana Tech (38) & Houston (40), Sept. 8, 2012
PASSES COMPLETED, BOTH TEAMS
Old Record: 81-TCU (44) & Houston (37), Nov. 3, 1990 (attempted 135)
New Record: 87 - Louisiana Tech (34) & Houston (53), Sept. 8, 2012 (attempted 129)
PASSES ATTEMPTED WITHOUT INTERCEPTION, BOTH TEAMS
Old Record: 114-Illinois (67) & Purdue (47), Oct. 12, 1985 (completed 67)
New Record: 129 - Louisiana Tech (52) & Houston (77), Sept. 8, 2012 (completed 87)
NATIONAL LEADERS - After two weeks of play, several WAC players lead the nation statistically: Louisiana Tech's Tevin King, scoring, 18.0 per game; San Jose State's Travis Johnson, tackles for loss, 3.0 per game; Louisiana Tech's Le'Vander Liggins and Louisiana Tech's Jon'Al White, fumbles recovered, 1.0 per game; and Liggins, passes defended, 4.0 per game. New Mexico State's Austin Franklin is second in receiving yards per game (154.0) and UTSA's Sean Ianno is second in field goals per game (3.0).
NEW ERA - The WAC begins a new era this year with the additions of Denver, Seattle, UT-Arlington, UTSA and Texas State with only the latter two competing in football. The WAC will consist of a total of 10 schools for the 2012-13 season, but just seven will play football. Both UTSA and Texas State are eligible to compete for the WAC championship, but neither are eligible for a postseason bowl game in 2012 due to the two-year process of transitioning from FCS to FBS. Texas State began the process last year and becomes eligible for bowl games in 2013, while UTSA must wait until 2014 as it begins the transition process this season. For their opponents, wins against Texas State this year count toward bowl eligibility while those against UTSA do not.
ALL COACHES RETURN - The WAC is the only FBS conference to return all of its head coaches from a year ago. Idaho's Robb Akey is the senior member of the group going into his sixth year with the Vandals. New members UTSA and Texas State have coaches that are in their second year with the school though Texas State's Dennis Franchione coached an additional two years with the Bobcats in 1990 and 1991. Franchione had two previous stints in the WAC with New Mexico and TCU and his 59 wins as a WAC head coach are the 11th most in conference history. UTSA's Larry Coker won a National Championship in his first year with Miami (Fla.) in 2001.PRESEASON FAVORITES - Defending WAC champion Louisiana Tech was picked as the favorite by both the media and coaches for the 2012 season. Utah State was second in both polls and San Jose State was third. As selected by the media, Louisiana Tech wide receiver Quinton Patton was voted the preseason Offensive Player of the Year while San Jose State defensive end Travis Johnson was picked as the Defensive Player of the Year. Patton, a senior, was a first-team all-WAC selection last year after catching 79 passes for 1,202 yards and 11 touchdowns in his first season with the Bulldogs. Johnson, a senior, earned first-team all-WAC honors after finishing second in the WAC with 9.5 sacks last year. He enters this season with 19 career sacks, the third most of any active player in the country.
FAMOUS IDAHO POTATO BOWL - The WAC continues its affiliation with the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl this year. The WAC champion (unless its UTSA or Texas State) will play an opponent from the Mid-American Conference. The WAC has played in the bowl game every year since 2000.
BOWL CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES - Since 1997, the WAC has been an official part of the Bowl Championship Series. The WAC's champion will receive an automatic berth in one of the five BCS bowl games if ranked in the top 12 of the BCS Standings (and is the highest ranked team from a conference without an automatic bid) or if ranked in the top 16 of the BCS Standings and its ranking is higher than that of a champion of a conference that has an annual automatic berth in one of the BCS bowls. The BCS Standings are determined by a formula involving polls and computer rankings. Next year's National Championship Game will be played in Miami on Jan. 7, 2013.