Can't wait to see these things this fall

Originally Published: May 9, 2005
By Ivan Maisel and Pat Forde | ESPN.com

Three Things I Can't Wait To See This Fall In the WAC
Ivan Maisel
Pat Forde
1. The best game on Sept. 3, and one of the few early games between ranked teams, will have Boise State between the hedges to play Georgia. Thrilled that Mark Richt agreed, but why did he do it? Jared Zabransky & Co. held their own against Louisville. The Broncos will give the Dawgs all they want.

2. Speaking of schedule surprises, Fresno State plays at USC on Nov. 19. That game is cradled between the Trojans' Pac-10 showdown at California on Nov. 12 and a week off before the Dec. 3 game against archrival UCLA. Pete Carroll's teams don't fall asleep. The way he schedules, they had better not.

3. San Jose State has been struggling to right its football program for years. The hiring of Dick Tomey as head coach and Ken Margerum as offensive coordinator — done with the blessing of Spartan alum Bill Walsh — is a good start.

1. How does September go? Boise State and Fresno State will have chances to make America notice them early. The Broncos open at Georgia Sept. 3, then play at Oregon State Sept. 10 and host Bowling Green Sept. 21. The Bulldogs visit Oregon Sept. 17. By the time the calendar officially turns to fall, we'll know whether the WAC is still on the national radar.

2. Can Dan Hawkins hang five straight on Pat Hill? Boise's coach is 4-0 against Fresno's coach — but this year the game is in Fresno, and this year both teams look loaded. The league title will be on the line Nov. 12.

3. Who will rise from the league's nether regions this year? Last year it was UTEP, and in 2003 it was Tulsa. In a league where five teams went 0-6 on the road in '04, there's plenty of room for improvement.

Ivan Maisel | email

Senior Writer, ESPN.com