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For Utah State, 2012 will be worth remembering
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

So it's that time of year ... and yes, let's look back.

What a year it was for the Aggies, and their fans. Highlights and lowlights, there were some huge stories. It's worth updating the scrapbook.

The biggest stories from 2012:

Unpresidented success for Aggie football • With a 41-15 win over Toledo in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, Utah State football put an exclamation point on an all-around memorable season. The program had never before had 11 wins, and the last time the program had won an outright conference title, FDR was in the White House. The Aggies put themselves on the map by getting thrilling wins over Utah, Louisiana Tech and putting themselves among the nation's leaders in many offensive and defensive categories. A huge host of players made the all-WAC team, and many of them will return in 2013 for what Utah State fans hope is a successful year. In the end, 2012 was as much about breaking the bar as raising it.

At last, an invite to the Mountain West • In April, the Aggies agreed to join a new conference home in 2013: the Mountain West. It was a deal long in the wishing, and swift in the making after talks heated up earlier this year. More football success helped make Utah State an attractive candidate, and helped the Aggies escape football uncertainty in the WAC. And with the recent news that Boise State should be staying in the Mountain West, more money and exposure could be in store for Utah State if it can be a consistent winner.

Gary Andersen era ends and Matt Wells takes the helm • Only three days after the program's first bowl victory in nearly two decades, the coach who helped lead the Aggies there shocked Logan when news leaked of his impending departure to Wisconsin. It took only two more days for the Aggies to announce their man to replace him: Matt Wells, the 2012 offensive coordinator. Continuity, the school explained, was the main reasoning, and Utah State sees a bright future ahead with the 39-year-old at the lead.

Danny Berger survives, recovers from frightening episode • The scariest moment of the year was when Utah State's 21-year-old forward collapsed during a practice and his heart stopped. He was revived by athletic trainer Mike Williams, and treated by hospitals in Logan and Murray. On a Tuesday, he had no heartbeat; on the following Saturday, he was sent back to campus. Berger has not yet resumed playing, but there is hope he might be able to retake the court as he recovers from his traumatic experience.

Leave some thoughts on other Utah State big stories from 2012 in the comments.

— Kyle Goon

kgoon@sltrib.com

Twitter: @kylegoon

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