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Pac-12: Big Sky teams size up challenges

First Published      Last Updated Jul 17 2014 10:38 am

For a fourth consecutive season as a Pac-12 member, Utah has scheduled a football game with a Big Sky Conference school.

Weber State coach Jay Hill was on the other side of these matchups as a Utah assistant. His first game with the Wildcats is Aug. 28 at Arizona State.

Asked about the personnel challenges that Big Sky teams face in these games, Hill observed, "I will say this: I don't think the gap's as big as people think it is, as far as the talent level. You see that in college basketball. ... You've got to get your kids to believe in what you're doing."


p class="TEXT_w_Indent">Weber State lost 70-7 at Utah in 2013. Idaho State will take its turn at Rice-Eccles Stadium in a season opener.

The Bengals have played at Washington and Washington State in recent years, losing by a combined 120-21. Regarding the experience in Pac-12 venues, ISU coach Mike Kramer said his program gained "not much positive, other than the money. ... It has not been beneficial, because we're not good enough."

Oregon State, which hosts Portland State in a season opener, has lost to the Big Sky's Sacramento State and Eastern Washington during the past three seasons.

Big Sky vs. Pac-12 in 2014

Aug. 28 - Idaho State at Utah; Weber State at Arizona State.

Aug. 30 - UC Davis at Stanford; Portland State at Oregon State.

Sept. 6 - Sacramento State at California; Eastern Washington at Washington.

Sept. 13 - Portland State at Washington State.

-- Kurt Kragthorpe