By Chadd Cripe
© 2013 Idaho Statesman
The Las Vegas Bowl (no more MAACO) will air on ABC this year, game organizers announced Thursday.
The game will be played at 1:30 p.m. MT Saturday, Dec. 21 — two hours before the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl.
Boise State has won the past three Las Vegas Bowls, which features the top choice from the Mountain West and fifth choice from the Pac-12.
The bowl has been played on ABC once before, in 2001. That game — Utah-USC — remains the highest-rated game in Las Vegas Bowl history.
ESPN added 15 Mountain West games to its TV schedule Thursday, including the four remaining Boise State games that it owns. However, times and TV assignments won’t be determined for most games until six or 12 days before kickoff.
This batch of games — including Boise State’s dates with Tennessee Martin, Southern Miss, Wyoming and New Mexico — can air on ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU or Web-based ESPN3.
Times and TV assignments for early-season games may be determined in advance.
Non-Boise State games grabbed by ESPN include Wyoming-Air Force, Fresno State-San Diego State, UNLV-Nevada, Army-Air Force, Nevada-Fresno State, Nevada-Colorado State, Utah State-UNLV, San Jose State-Nevada, New Mexico-Fresno State, Air Force-Colorado State and San Diego State-UNLV.
Of the four Boise State games not assigned TV networks yet, at least one must air on ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 and only two can air on ESPN3.
Here is Boise State’s schedule:
Aug. 31: at Washington
Sept. 7: vs. Tennessee Martin, TBA, ESPN Networks
Sept. 13 (Friday): vs. Air Force, 6 p.m., ESPN
Sept. 20 (Friday): at Fresno State, 7 p.m., ESPN
Sept. 28: vs. Southern Miss, TBA, ESPN Networks
Oct. 5: BYE
Oct. 12: at Utah State, 5:30 p.m., CBS Sports Network
Oct. 19: vs. Nevada, 6 p.m., CBS Sports Network
Oct. 25 (Friday): at BYU, 6 p.m., ESPN
Nov. 2: at Colorado State, 6 p.m., CBS Sports Network
Nov. 9: BYE
Nov. 16: vs. Wyoming, TBA, ESPN Networks
Nov. 23: at San Diego State, 8:30 p.m., CBS Sports Network
Nov. 30: vs. New Mexico, TBA, ESPN Networks
Dec. 7: Mountain West championship game