May 26, 1998 – Led by the vision of Colorado State University President Dr. Albert Yates, the Mountain West Conference was conceived when the presidents of eight institutions — Air Force, BYU, Colorado State, New Mexico, San Diego State, UNLV, Utah and Wyoming — decided to form a new NCAA Division I-A intercollegiate athletic conference.
October 15, 1998 – Named Craig Thompson as the first Commissioner for the new conference.
October 26, 1998 – Named the new league the Mountain West Conference.
December 4, 1998 – Selected Colorado Springs, Colorado, as the headquarters for the Mountain West Conference office.
January 4, 1999 – The Mountain West Conference office opened its doors for the first day of operation.
January 10, 1999 – The initial Mountain West Conference logo was unveiled.
February 1, 1999 – Reached a seven-year agreement with ESPN, Inc., giving ESPN exclusive national and regional television rights to football and men’s basketball, and the women’s basketball championship game.
June 7, 1999 – Announced three-year basketball tournament and football bowl agreements with the Las Vegas Convention & Visitor’s Authority.
July 1, 1999 – The Mountain West began official operation as the newest NCAA Division I-A conference.
September 16, 1999 – BYU defeated Colorado State 34-13 at LaVell Edwards Stadium in Provo, Utah in the first-ever MW athletic event.
November 22, 1999 – BYU women’s cross country team captured the MW’s first national championship in Bloomington, Indiana.
December 18, 1999 – Utah posted the Conference’s first Bowl victory with a 17-16 win over Fresno State in the EA Sports Las Vegas Bowl.
April 28, 2000 – The Mountain West became eligible for automatic qualification consideration in all sports beginning with the 2000-01 season, as approved by the NCAA Board of Directors.
August 24, 2001 – The Mountain West approved Pepsi Center in Denver to host its 2004-06 basketball championships.
November 19, 2001 – BYU women’s cross country team captured the NCAA national championship in Greenville, SC.
November 25, 2002 – BYU women’s cross country team wins the NCAA national championship in Terre Haute, Indiana.
August 26, 2004 – Reached a seven-year agreement with College Sports Television (CSTV), now CBS Sports Network, giving the independent cable network exclusive broadcast rights to Mountain West football and men’s basketball, plus coverage for all other MW sports, beginning in the fall of 2006.
September 13, 2004 – College Sports Television (CSTV) and the MW enhanced their fully-integrated multimedia partnership by announcing the advent of the MountainWest Sports Network, the first-ever sports network dedicated solely to an intercollegiate athletic conference, to be launched in 2006.
December 5, 2004 – Utah accepted an invitation to play in the 34th Annual Tostitos Fiesta Bowl in Tempe, Arizona. The Utes were the first non-automatic-qualifying BCS team to participate in a BCS bowl game, after completing the regular season with a perfect 11-0 record and finishing sixth in the final BCS standings.
January 1, 2005 – Utah posted a convincing 35-7 victory over Big East champion Pittsburgh in the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl, marking the first win by a non-automatic-qualifying team in a BCS bowl game.
April 23, 2005 – The San Francisco 49ers selected Utah junior quarterback Alex Smith with the first pick of the 2005 NFL Draft. Smith’s selection as the overall No. 1 pick was a first for both the University of Utah and the six-year old MW.
June 28, 2005 – The Milwaukee Bucks selected Utah sophomore center Andrew Bogut as the No. 1 overall pick in the 2005 NBA Draft. Utah is the only school in history to have the No. 1 selections in the NFL and NBA drafts in the same year.
July 1, 2005 – TCU officially became a member of the Mountain West.
September 2, 2005 – The Mountain West was one of nine leagues that experimented with instant replay in college football. The MW was the only conference to utilize a coaches’ challenge as part of its system, an element that was ultimately adopted in the NCAA instant replay rule that was implemented in the 2006 season.
October 13, 2005 – The Mountain West Board of Directors approved a four-year deal to send the basketball championships to the Thomas & Mack Center/Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas beginning in 2007.
July 19, 2006 – Comcast joined CSTV as partner in ownership and operation of The Mtn.
September 1, 2006 – The Mtn. – MountainWest Sports Network launched from the Comcast Media Center in Denver.
March 31, 2007 – Wyoming defeats South Dakota State 70-59 to win the WNIT in front of 15,642 fans in Laramie, Wyoming. The Cowgirls became the first Mountain West team to win women’s postseason tournament.
August 27, 2008 – DIRECTV launched The Mtn. – MountainWest Sports Network.
December 7, 2008 – Utah accepted an invitation to play in the 75th Allstate Sugar Bowl in New Orleans. The Utes were the first non-automatic-qualifying BCS team to participate in a second BCS bowl game, after completing the regular season with a perfect 12-0 record and finishing sixth in the final BCS standings.
January 2, 2009 – Utah rolled to a triumphant 31-17 victory over then fourth-ranked Alabama in the Sugar Bowl, marking the first time a non-automatic-qualifying BCS team had won two BCS bowl games. The Utes finished the season ranked No. 2 in the Associated Press and No. 4 in the USA Today/Coaches polls.
June 1, 2009 – The Mountain West Board of Directors approved a three-year extension to keep the basketball championships at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas through 2013.
June 9, 2009 – The Washington Nationals selected San Diego State junior pitcher Stephen Strasburg with the first pick of the 2009 MLB Draft. The MW?is one of two conferences since 2000 to have the No. 1 pick in each of the NFL, NBA and MLB Drafts.
December 6, 2009 – TCU finished the 2009 college football season ranked No. 4 in the BCS standings to mark the then-highest finish by a non-automatic qualifying team. The Horned Frogs earned an automatic bid to the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl to mark the MW’s third BCS bowl appearance since 2004.
January 4, 2010 – TCU lost to Boise State, 17-10, in the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl. It was the first BCS game between two non-automatic-qualifying teams.
June 11, 2010 – The MW announced the addition of Boise State University as the newest member of the Mountain West, beginning with the 2011-12 academic year.
2010 – Working with DVSport, MW designs innovative basketball replay system and begins usage during the 2010-11 season. System allows officials to control replay review process rather than production truck.
June 13, 2010 – TCU won the rubber match vs. Texas in the 2010 NCAA Baseball Austin Super Regional to become the first MW team to earn a berth to the College World Series. The Horned Frogs advanced as far as the semifinals of the CWS.
August 18, 2010 – The MW announced that Fresno State and the University of Nevada had accepted invitations to join the Conference, beginning with the 2012-13 academic year.
December 5, 2010 – TCU finished the 2010 college football season ranked No. 3 in the BCS standings to mark the highest finish by a non-automatic-qualifying team. The Horned Frogs earned an automatic bid to the Rose Bowl to mark the MW’s fourth BCS bowl appearance since 2004 and third consecutive BCS bowl appearance.
December 10, 2010 – The MW announced the University of Hawai‘i had accepted an invitation to join the Conference as an affiliate member in football, beginning with the 2012-13 academic year.
January 1, 2011 – TCU held off then fourth-ranked Wisconsin in a 21-19 victory at the Rose Bowl. The Horned Frogs finished the season undefeated at 13-0 and earned a No. 2 final ranking in the Associated Press and USA Today/Coaches polls.
June 6, 2011 – The MW unveiled the league’s new brand direction and conference identity, including a new logo, at the annual Board of Directors spring meeting in La Jolla, California.
June 7, 2011 – The MW Board of Directors endorsed the establishment of a state-of-the-art basketball instant replay system to be implemented league-wide during the 2011-12 season.
July 1, 2011 – Boise State University officially became the newest member of the Mountain West. BYU and the University of Utah end affiliation with the league.
April 1-3, 2012 – The Mountain West hosted the NCAA Women’s Final Four at the Pepsi Center in Denver. It marked the first time the premier event in women’s intercollegiate athletics was conducted in the Mountain Time Zone.
May 4, 2012 – The MW announced that San José State University and Utah State University had accepted invitations to join the Conference, beginning with the 2013-14 academic year.
June 3, 2012 – The Mountain West Board of Directors approved a three-year extension to keep the basketball championships at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas through 2016.
July 1, 2012 – Fresno State, Hawai‘i (football only) and the University of Nevada officially became the newest members of the Mountain West. TCU ends affiliation with the league.
February 12, 2013 – The Mountain West established two six-team divisions and a championship game in football, effective with the 2013 season. The inaugural MW Football Championship Game will be played December 7, 2013 at the home stadium of the divisional champion with the highest BCS ranking.
March 20, 2013 – The MW announced a long-term agreement with ESPN, establishing the network as the second national television partner for Conference-controlled football and men’s basketball games.
June 10, 2013 – The Mountain West, in collaboration with Campus Insiders (now Stadium), unveiled plans to dramatically enhance the MW Network, which was established in October 2012. Under this unique alliance, the Mountain West will live-stream hundreds of its men’s and women’s sporting events, add branded studio programming, develop sponsorship opportunities and grow distribution on multiple platforms and devices.
June 27, 2013 – The Cleveland Cavaliers selected UNLV freshman forward Anthony Bennett as the No. 1 overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft. The Mountain West is one of three conferences to have multiple No. 1 draft picks (Utah’s Andrew Bogut, 2005) since 2000.
July 1, 2013 – San José State University and Utah State University officially became members of the Mountain West.
December 7, 2013 – Fresno State defeated Utah State 24-17 in the inaugural Mountain West Football Championship Game, held at Bulldog Stadium in Fresno, California, and televised on CBS.
February 20, 2014 – The MW announced that Colorado College had accepted an invitation to join the Conference as an affiliate member in women’s soccer, beginning with the 2014-15 academic year.
June 2, 2014 – The Mountain West became the first conference to have student-athletes participate in a Board of Directors meeting. Air Force volleyball student-athlete Emma Dridge, incoming chair of the MW Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), and New Mexico track and field student-athlete Kendall Spencer, the 2013-14 Chair of the National SAAC attended the June meeting in Colorado Springs.
December 31, 2014 – In the inaugural year of the new College Football Playoff system, Boise State earned the automatic slot into a New Year’s Six bowl game as the highest-ranked champion from the Group of Five 5 conferences. The Broncos defeated then 10th-ranked Arizona 38-30 in the VIZIO Fiesta Bowl and finished the season 12-2. Boise State earned a No. 16 final ranking in the Associated Press and USA Today/Coaches polls.
November 21, 2015 – The New Mexico women’s cross country team won the 2015 NCAA Championship in Louisville, Kentucky.
December 18, 2015 – The Mountain West Board of Directors approved a three-year extension to retain the basketball championships at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas through 2019.
December 2015 – The Mountain West had a record eight football teams participate in bowl games.
September 1, 2016 – The Mountain West became first conference to broadcast a college football game on Twitter (Weber State at Utah State).
April 1, 2016 – Nevada defeats Morehead State, 85-82, to win the best of three series and claim the CBI championship.
December 30, 2016 – The Nova Home Loans Arizona Bowl between Air Force and South Alabama became first college bowl game to be streamed live on Twitter and Facebook.
April 18, 2017 – The NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee announced that the Mountain West and the Pepsi Center will host the 2021 NCAA Division I Men’s West Regional in Denver.
June 22, 2017 – Mountain West Commissioner Craig Thompson was named to the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee for a one-year term replacing the retiring Paul Krebs of New Mexico. Subsequently, Commissioner Thompson’s appointment was extended to the end of the 2020-21 academic year.
Summer 2017 – Campus Insiders, 120 Sports and Sinclair Broadcasting combined forces to launch Stadium, the industry’s only all-platform sports network. The Mountain West, in collaboration with Stadium, will continue to provide fans with on-demand access to live game action, compelling feature content, and the latest news from across the Conference via the Mountain West Network (MWN).
November 18, 2017 – The New Mexico women’s cross country team won the 2017 NCAA Championship in Louisville, Kentucky.
March 2018 – The MW hosted the inaugural MW eSports Showdown during the 2018 Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championships, the first event of its kind staged alongside a collegiate athletics event.
April 26, 2018 – A league-record three student-athletes were selected in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft. The MW was the only Group of 5 conference with multiple opening round selections in 2018.
July 1, 2019 – The Mountain West celebrates its 20th birthday.
March 12, 2020 – The Mountain West Board of Directors canceled all remaining spring sports competitions and MW championships due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
August 10, 2020 – The Mountain West Board of Directors postponed all scheduled fall sports contests and MW championships indefinitely due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
September 24, 2020 – The Mountain West Board of Directors resumes fall football competition starting Saturday, Oct. 24.
November 18, 2020 – The Mountain West tied a league record (2013) with four student-athletes selected in the NBA Draft.
June 2021 – Despite COVID-19 pandemic, the Mountain West delivers record revenue distribution.
September 21, 2021 – The Mountain West unveils student-athlete driven social media campaign, #MakingHerMark, an initiative that focuses on empowering and highlighting female student-athletes.
January 2022 – The Mountain West wins nation’s-best fifth Bowl Challenge Cup after posting a 5-1 record in postseason football games and completes the season as the top ranked Non-Autonomous 5 conference nationally (composite computer rankings).
January 1, 2023 – Gloria Nevarez begins her term as the second Commissioner of the Mountain West.
April 1, 2023 – San Diego State becomes first MW team to reach the NCAA Men’s Final Four. The Aztecs defeat FAU 72-71 in the semifinals and fall to UCONN 76-59 in the National Championship game.