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Mountain West Conference to request BCS automatic bid

December 13, 2011
The Maui News

LAS VEGAS (AP) - The Mountain West Conference will ask for an automatic bid to the Bowl Championship Series for the 2012 and 2013 seasons.

The conference - which will welcome the University of Hawaii, Fresno State and Nevada next season - announced Monday that its board of directors approved making the request.

The BCS rules allow a league without automatic qualifying status to request an exemption for the next two seasons if its teams met certain performance standards from 2008 to 2011.

The Mountain West met those standards, with the help of TCU earning BCS bids in 2009 and 2010. The conference was also aided by Boise State and TCU's performances this season.

The Broncos, who played in two big-money bowl games while in the Western Athletic Conference, finished seventh in the final BCS standings and the conference champion Horned Frogs were 18th, though neither earned a bid to the four marquee bowl games.

Hawaii has also previoulsy earned a BCS bid, in 2007 as WAC champion.

Utah earned an automatic bid in 2008 for the Mountain West, but left the conference for the Pac-12 after last season. The league said it met the BCS's benchmarks to apply for AQ status without Utah's results counting for the Mountain West.

TCU is leaving next season for the Big 12 and Boise State is slated to leave the conference in 2013 for the Big East.

The Mountain West also lost BYU after last season.



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