BYU, Utah football: Media peg Cougars 2nd, Utes 3rd in preseason poll

Published: Tuesday, July 21 2009 6:04 p.m. MDT

HENDERSON, Nev. — TCU is the favorite to win the 2009 Mountain West Conference football championship. The Horned Frogs received 15 of 24 first-place votes to top the annual media poll at the league football meetings at the Green Valley Ranch resort.

BYU was picked second with six first-place votes, while defending champion Utah was third with three first-place votes.

The remainder of the poll, in projected order of finish: Air Force, UNLV, Colorado State, New Mexico, San Diego State and Wyoming.

BYU quarterback Max Hall headlined the preseason all-conference team. The senior was named Offensive Player of the Year. TCU's Jerry Hughes is the preseason Defensive Player of the Year. TCU return specialist Jeremy Kerley is the preseason Special Teams Player of the Year, while TCU running back Ed Wesley earned Freshman of the Year recognition.

On the local front, Hall was joined on the preseason all-conference team by teammates by running back Harvey Unga, tight end Dennis Pitta, defensive lineman Jan Jorgensen and place kicker Mitch Payne.

The Utes, meanwhile, placed running back Matt Asiata, offensive lineman Zane Beadles, defensive lineman Koa Misi, linebacker Stevenson Sylvester and defensive back Robert Johnson on the squad.

2009 Mountain West Conference preseason poll

Rank Team (first-place votes) Points

1. TCU (15) 207

2. BYU (6) 190

3. Utah (3) 179

4. Air Force 130

5. UNLV 108

6. Colorado State 107

7. New Mexico 60

8. San Diego State 53

9. Wyoming 46

2009 Preseason All-Mountain West team

Offensive Player of the Year: QB Max Hall, BYU

Defensive Player of the Year: DL Jerry Hughes, TCU

Special Teams Player of the Year: KR/PR Jeremy Kerley, TCU

Freshman of the Year: RB Ed Wesley, TCU

Offense

QB: Max Hall, BYU, Sr.

WR: Ryan Wolfe, UNLV, Sr.

WR: Rashaun Greer, Colorado State, Sr.

WR: Vincent Brown, San Diego State, Jr.

RB: Harvey Unga, BYU, Jr.

RB: Matt Asiata, Utah, Sr.

OL: Zane Beadles, Utah, Sr.

OL: Nick Charles, Air Force, Sr.

OL: Shelley Smith, Colorado State, Sr.

OL: Erik Cook, New Mexico, Sr.

OL: Marshall Newhouse, TCU, Sr.

TE: Dennis Pitta, BYU, Sr.

Defense

DL: Jan Jorgensen, BYU, Sr.

DL: Jerry Hughes, TCU, Sr.

DL: John Fletcher, Wyoming, Sr.

DL: Koa Misi, Utah, Sr.

LB: Daryl Washington, TCU, Sr.

LB: Jason Beauchamp, UNLV, Sr.

LB: Stevenson Sylvester, Utah, Sr.

DB: Chris Thomas, Air Force, Sr.

DB: Rafael Priest, TCU, Sr.

DB: Nick Sanders, TCU, Sr.

DB: Robert Johnson, Utah, Sr.

Specialists

P: Anson Kelton, TCU, Soph.

PK: Mitch Payne, BYU, Jr.

RS: Jeremy Kerley, TCU, Jr.

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