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Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Internal affairs: News from around the non-BCS and Independents


Posted by ESPN.com's Graham Watson

Louisiana Tech starts new tradition: After Louisiana Tech's 21-0 win at San Jose, the first shutout by any team at San Jose in 40 years, coach Derek Dooley declared a new tradition. Prior to the game, Dooley sent members of the staff to go out and get a Bulldog to take on the road with the team. They went out and got what Dooley described as a "flea-mart-looking dog" because he said he knew the game was going to be dirty. Players patted the dog's head prior to the game and after the win, Dooley said the team declared it the Player of the Game. Now, the dog is coming on every road trip.

Chris Petersen never says never: Chris Petersen's name has been mentioned in some way, shape or form for nearly every job that's come open the last couple weeks. Some, like the Washington job, have more legs than others considering the location and Petersen's familiarity with the Pac-10.

Petersen said he's been asked a couple times whether he'll leave and he's even had conversations with coaching friends about making the jump from Boise State to a major school. Petersen said while he's concentrating on the season right now, he's not ruling out talking to schools after the season.

"The only thing that I always say is, 'never say never,'" Petersen said. "But this is a great place, I really, truly mean that and we love it here. My family loves it here. I think a lot of our coaches like it here and so I do think this is a hard place to beat."

The MAC is happy with its TV contract: Playing on Tuesdays and Wednesdays is not ideal, but for commissioner Rick Chryst and the rest of the Mid-American Conference, it's essential. It's the only way the MAC could be viewed in millions of homes and the only way people might know the names Nate Davis and Dan LeFevour.

From 1987-99, the MAC did not have a regular season televised game, so now watching Ball State, Akron and others play on ESPN every week has brought some satisfaction.

"I think it does help in the polls when were on TV," Chryst said of Ball State's surge in the BCS standings a week after it beat Northern Illinois on ESPN. "It's something that this league has worked hard to earn, the opportunities that the conference is enjoying now is a product of earning it. To have your league play out on national television is truly a special thing."

Boise State to the MWC? Boise talk radio show host Paul J. Schneider reported on his show earlier this week that Boise State president Bob Kustra received an invitation from the Mountain West to join the league.

The Mountain West office denied this claim and Mountain West commissioner Craig Thompson addressed it during the MWC's Tuesday teleconference stating that no expansion talks were in the works. Thompson also said that he wasn't sure that if Boise State moved to the Mountain West that it would still be undefeated.

"My personal opinion is that they probably wouldn't be 12-0," Thompson said. "Take nothing away from Boise State, but I don't know that they would go undefeated against the top four teams that are vying for the conference championship."

Kemp undergoes surgery: Tulane quarterback Joe Kemp, who suffered a broken collarbone after taking a late shot by defensive lineman Phillip Hunt during last week's loss to Houston, underwent surgery on Tuesday.

Coach Bob Toledo wasn't happy about the injury but was optimistic that Kemp would heal completely and ultimately return to the playing field.

"The doctors seem to think that by putting the plate in there and putting a couple screws, he'll be fine. We're just thankful it's not his throwing shoulder. Hopefully he'll be able to come back and be ready for spring."