Two Bulldogs plan on transfering
The Fresno State football team is riding high after Saturday’s win at Boise State in the Mountain West Championship game, but they did suffer a couple losses Monday, as cornerback Cale Sanders Jr., and nickelback Emari Pait entered the transfer portal.
Pait, a second-year player out of Culver City High School in Los Angeles, saw action in all 13 games as a true freshman in 2021 and recorded 26 tackles, but had a limited role this season.
Sanders Jr., a second-year player out of New Caney High School in Porter, Texas, appeared in all 13 games as a true freshman in 2021, starting the final four games of the season at cornerback.
This season, he started nine of the first 11 games at corner, and for the season, had 32 tackles, six pass breakups, and two forced fumbles.
But junior college transfer Carlton Johnson started the last two games at cornerback, including Saturday’s conference-clinching win at Boise State.
Bulldogs excited to play in Sofi Stadium
Saturday’s win on the blue turf not only meant the program’s first Mountain West Championship since 2018, but it also means the Red Wave will have an opportunity to see the Bulldogs one more time this year in the state of California.
Because as expected, on Sunday, the Bulldogs accepted an invitation to represent the Mountain West in the LA Bowl on Saturday Dec. 17 at Sofi Stadium in Inglewood, the NFL home of both the Chargers and Rams. Kickoff is set for 12:30 p.m. PT.
Their opponent in that bowl game will be 7-5 Washington State, the Pac-12’s seventh place team.
“You know, I’ve heard just how big it is,” said Fresno State senior safety Evan Williams, about Sofi Stadium. “It’s almost a little unreal, excited to play in that environment. Any time you get to play in an environment like that, it’s gotta be exciting.”
“I think it’s just a great opportunity to play a quality opponent and a Pac-12 school,” said senior quarterback Jake Haener. “And be able to showcase what we can do against top-tier talent.”
“Noone’s ever been in, as far as I know of, as far as on our team, has been in the stadium,” said Fresno State head coach Jeff Tedford. “But just looking at it on t.v., and hearing all the great stories about what a great venue it is, we’re very excited to go.”
The LA Bowl is contracted to feature a Mountain West versus Pac-12 matchup.
The bowl is has the first choice from the Mountain West, so as expected, it took MW champion Fresno State.
Pac-12 wise, the LA Bowl normally gets the sixth choice from the conference (after the Rose, Alamo, Vegas, Holiday, and Sun Bowls), but ended up with the seventh place team from the Pac-12, because USC also was selected for a New Year’s Six Bowl (Cotton).
Don’t overlook the Cougars though.
Wazzu won at Wisconsin this season, and lost one score games against College Football Playoff top-15 teams Oregon (No. 15) and Utah (No. 8).