Wyoming vs. UC Davis football primer

Some notes and quotes for Saturday’s Wyoming football game vs. UC Davis. Kickoff is at 2 p.m. MT at Jonah Field at War Memorial Stadium in Laramie.

— The game won’t be on conventional TV, but will be televised on WyoVision at UW’s athletics website — GoWyo.com — and on the Mountain West Network online at TheMW.com/watch-live and CampusInsiders.com. The game also can be viewed on Twitter at https://twitter.com/i/live/774470758831497216. The official hashtag for the game is #WYOvs.UCD.


Ron Gould

Ron Gould

— One interesting aspect about the game is both teams run pro-style offenses. They may do it out of different formations, but in a day and age where spread offenses are the norm, this game should be somewhat of an old-school game. Said UC Davis coach Ron Gould: “The first two weeks all we’ve seen are spread teams. It will be good to get back to blue-collar football, but one thing about Wyoming what they do up front is very physical. The biggest thing for us we got to match thier intensity in how they play.”

— When asked if it is an advantage, disadvantage or a wash in terms of getting ready for an offense that is similar to the one he sees in practice every day, UC Davis senior linebacker Zach Jones said: “I dont think it makes that big of a difference. “They got guys acorss the board that are great at what they do, but nothing in particular stands out.”

— UW and UC Davis meet for the first time in football Saturday, but the Cowboys are 36-32 all-time against teams from California. This will be the 13th team from California UW has ever played in football.

Brian Hill

Brian Hill

— Cowboys junior running back Brian Hill needs just five yards to move into fourth place by himself on the school’s career rushing list, and 72 to move into third place. Hill enters the game with 2,601 yards.

— Hill ran for 125 yards on 33 carries in the opener against Northern Illinois, but had just 49 yards on 17 carries last week at Nebraska. Hill’s longest run so far this season is 13 yards. “Sometimes it’s creating some running lanes. I was really pleased with the extra yards he got after contact against Northern Illinois. We probably didn’t feed him the ball enough (at Nebraska),” third-year UW coach Craig Bohl said. “For us to be successful we need to be more balanced offensively (UW had 131 rushing yards and 189 passing at Nebraska, but 70 of those rushing yards came on three plays by redshirt freshman wide receiver Austin Conway). We’ll keep on feeding the ball to Brian in more situations, but his real forte is to get out on a safety and a corner and run them over. He’s just not been in that position so far.”

Jalen Ortiz

Jalen Ortiz

— One player to watch today defensively for UW is junior safety/nickel Jalen Ortiz. With senior outside linebacker D.J. May suspended for this game, junior Tim Kamana (a former safety) takes his place in the starting lineup. But with UC Davis’ pro-style offense and formations, Ortiz could play a bigger role. The transfer from UCLA was expected to bring experience to UW’s secondary. That could really show in this game.

— The Cowboys have 16 players on scholarship from California. Five are expected to start and four others should play a lot. Of the 100 players listed on the UC Davis roster, 93 are from California.

— “UC Davis is about two hours north from where I’m from. I’ve never been there and never had any contact with them (through the recruiting process). This is just another game, but it’s nice to play a team from back home.”  — UW redshirt sophomore starting quarterback Josh Allen, who is from Firebaugh, California.

— “Before the season started, we as players decided whatever happend last year happened last year. We’re not looking back. Our focus is that this is a new team, a better team and new leadership. We’re focusing on being a lot better team this year.” — UW senior wide receiver Jake Maulhardt on if last season’s loss to FCS foe North Dakota will be thought or talked about this week. UC Davis also is a FCS school.

— UC Davis is 2-15 all-time against current Football Bowl Subdivision teams. Its last win came against San Jose State in 2010. The Aggies also are 2-11 in road games going back to the beginning of the 2014 season.

— One stat that stands out for UC Davis: It has committed only one turnover in its first two games, while its defense has forced seven. UW is coming off a game at Nebraska where it had six turnovers.

For more UW sports coverage see the Wyoming Tribune Eagle and Laramie Boomerang and log on to wyosports.net. I will be live chatting online for the game, starting at 1:45 p.m. Links to the chat will be at wyosports.net and on this blog.

2 thoughts on “Wyoming vs. UC Davis football primer

  1. Hi RG. From watching/attending the first 2 Wyoming games it seems like DJ May is all over the field making plays on D. With him not playing in this game, how big of a drop off, if any, should we expect with Kamana/Ortiz? I know, obviously May is starting for a reason. I’m still cautiously optimistic for this season. I see Wyoming being competitive with everyone. If anything, with this improved D (bigger/faster), and Hill/Allen on offense, the season will at least be fun to watch.

    • Hi Kyle,

      I think the impact of not having May could be significant today. You’re right, he’s been all over the field and making a lot of plays. Even the UC Davis coach mentioned him this week. Kamana has played a decent amount, but I think this game could be big for Ortiz. Coaches gushed about his versatility and smarts during camp. We may get to see that today.
      Great question and comments. Appreciate it.


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