The 122nd season of Utah State football is just around the corner.
For starters, the Aggies will hold their first practice of fall camp next Thursday, with the team’s annual media day taking place the day before.
Before that happens, USU and the other 11 teams in the Mountain West will participate in the league’s annual Football Media Days. The two-day event will start Tuesday morning at Green Valley Ranch Resort in Henderson, Nevada.
The Mountain West will release its preseason all-conference teams and polls Tuesday morning. A year ago, the Aggies were projected to place fourth in the Mountain Division. They ended up finishing second behind Boise State.
USU and the other five institutions from the Mountain Division of the Mountain West will meet with the media Wednesday, with the West Division taking center stage Tuesday. In addition to head coach Gary Andersen, the Aggies will be represented at the event by a pair of returning all-league performers in junior quarterback Jordan Love and senior defensive end Tipa Galeai.
Every program in the conference will be represented by its head coach and two players.
Galeai and Love will also take part in some social media activities Tuesday evening from 7:45-8:45 p.m. Clips from this and other activities from Mountain West Media Days will be available at https://themw.com/sports/2019/6/24/2019_MWFB_MEDIA_DAYS.aspx
A year ago, Love and Galeai garnered second-team all-MW honors. Despite sitting out several quarters in blowout wins, Love threw for 3,567 yards and 32 touchdowns, vs. just six interceptions. The native of Bakersfield, California, also rushed for seven scores and completed 64 percent of his passes.
Galeai paced the Aggies in tackles for loss (14.0), sacks (10.5) and forced fumbles (three), and also racked up 64 tackles. Additionally, the TCU transfer picked off a pair of passes — one of which was a memorable pick-six against BYU.
Here are the players and head coaches from the other 11 Mountain West teams that will be in The Silver State the next two days:
Air Force: The Falcons will be represented by senior defensive back Jeremy Fejedelem and senior tight end Kade Waguespack. Fejedelem, an honorable mention all-MW honoree a year ago, led Air Force in tackles (104) and interceptions (three). Of Waguespack’s nine catches, three of them were touchdowns.
AFA is coached by Troy Calhoun, who is entering his 13th season at the helm of his alma mater. Calhoun has guided the Falcons to nine bowls games and an overall record of 87-67.
Boise State: The Broncos will be represented by senior offensive lineman John Molchon and senior safety Kekoa Nawahine. Molchon was one of two BSU O-linemen, both underclassmen, who received first-team all-MW accolades in 2018. Nawahine, a honorable mention all-league selection, recorded 71 tackles a year ago.
BSU is coached by Bryan Harsin, who is entering his sixth season at the helm of his alma mater. Harsin had guided the Broncos to a bowl game in each of his seasons as head coach and has an overall record of 52-15.
Colorado State: The Rams will be represented by junior quarterback Collin Hill and junior defensive end Emmanuel Jones. As a part-time starter last season, Hill completed 58.9 percent of his passes for 1,387 yards and seven TDs, vs. seven INTs. Jones finished with 34 tackles, including 7.5 for a loss, as a sophomore.
CSU is coached by Mike Bobo, who is entering his fifth season at the helm. Bobo has guided the Rams to three bowl games and has an overall record of 24-27.
Fresno State: The Bulldogs will be represented by junior tailback Ronnie Rivers and senior defensive back JuJu Hughes. As a sophomore, Rivers rushed for 743 yards and 10 TDs on 132 carries. He was named the MVP of the Las Vegas Bowl after shredding Arizona State for 212 yards on the ground. As a junior, Hughes, a second-team all-MW pick last year, contributed 78 tackles and four INTs.
FSU is coached by Jeff Telford, who is entering his third season at the helm. Telford has guided the Bulldogs to back-to-back bowl appearances and an overall record of 22-6. FSU went 1-11 the season before hiring Telford.
Hawaii: The Warriors will be represented by junior QB Cole McDonald and senior defensive end Kaimana Padello. As a sophomore, McDonald, an honorable mention all-league honoree, exploded for 3,875 yards passing and 36 TDs, vs. 10 INTs. As a junior, Padello, a second-team all-MW pick, finished with a team-high tallies in TFL (13.5) and sacks (8.5).
Hawaii is coached by Nick Rolovich, who is entering his fourth season at his alma mater. Rolovich has guided the Warriors to a pair of bowls and an overall record of 18-22.
Nevada: The Wolf Pack will be represented by senior wide receiver Kaleb Fossum and senior linebacker Lucas Weber. Weber, who lines up in the slot, caught 69 passes for 737 yards a year ago. As a junior, Weber tallied 56 tackles, including 10.5 for a loss, and 5.5 sacks.
UNR is coached by Jay Norvell, who is entering his third season at the helm. After going 3-9 in his first season, Norvell led the Wolf Pack to an 8-5 record a year ago, including a dramatic victory over Arkansas State in the Arizona Bowl.
New Mexico: The Lobos will be represented by junior O-lineman Teton Saltes and senior nose guard Aaron Blackwell. Saltes tied for the team lead among O-linemen with 806 snaps a year ago. Blackwell started the final four games as a junior and contributed 3.5 TFL.
UNM is coached by Bob Davie, who is entering his eighth season at the helm. The former Notre Dame head coach guided the Lobos to back-to-back New Mexico bowls in 2015-16, but has gone 6-18 since then. Davie’s overall record at UNM is 33-54.
San Jose State: The Spartans will be represented by senior signal caller Josh Love and senior linebacker Ethan Aguayo. As a junior, Love completed 56.1 percent of his passes for 1,963 yards and 14 TDs, vs. nine picks. As a junior, Aguayo secured honorable mention all-MW accolades after amassing 104 tackles.
SJSU is coached by Brent Brennan, who is entering his third season at the helm. The former SJSU assistant coach has a posted a record of 3-22 since taking over the program. The Spartans haven’t been bowling since 2015.
San Diego State: The Aztecs will be represented by senior tailback Juwan Washington and senior linebacker Kyahva Tezino. Despite missing more than four games as a junior, Washington, a honorable mention all-league selection, amassed 999 yards and scored 10 times on the ground. Tezino, a first-team all-MW pick, shined as a junior as he recorded 127 tackles, including 14.5 for a loss, and 8.5 sacks.
SDSU is coached by Rocky Long, who is entering his ninth season at the helm. The former UNM head coach has guided the Aztecs to a bowl game every season since he took over the program and an overall record of 71-35. No other MW head football coach has won more games.
UNLV: The Rebels will be represented by junior signal caller Armani Rogers and senior linebacker Javin White. Rogers, an explosive dual-threat QB, suffered a season-ending injury in UNLV’s fourth game last year. He was the MW Freshman of the Year in 2017. As a junior, White finished with 64 tackles, including 6.5 for a loss, and two INTs.
UNLV is coached by Tony Sanchez, who is entering his fifth season at the helm. Sanchez has guided the Rebels to an overall record of 16-32. UNLV hasn’t been bowling since Jan. 1, 2014.
Wyoming: The Cowboys will be represented by senior kicker Cooper Rothe and senior linebacker Logan Wilson. Rothe, the reigning MW Special Teams Player of the Year, was one of three finalists for the Lou Groza Award last season. As a junior, was successful on 16 of 17 field goal attempts and all 28 of his PATs. Wilson earned honorable mention all-league accolades after contributing 103 tackles, including 11.0 for a loss, and two INTs.
Wyoming is coached by Craig Bohl, who is entering his sixth season at the helm. Bohl has guided the Cowboys to a pair of bowls and an overall record of 28-35. While Bohl was the head coach at FCS power North Dakoka State, the Bison captured three straight national titles from 2011-13.