UW-UC Davis postgame thoughts

It was nice to see Wyoming do what it is supposed to do against many FCS foes — win convincingly.

The Cowboys 45-22 victory in front of 18,781 fans at Jonah Field at War Memorial Stadium Saturday tied the most points scored in the Craig Bohl era. UW also scored 45 points at Fresno State in 2014.

Here is Bohl after the game:

To me, the biggest thing that came from the game was how redshirt sophomore quarterback Josh Allen responded to adversity — not just in the UC Davis game but coming off his six-turnover debacle at Nebraska the week before.

With UW up 14-3 against UC Davis, Allen lost the ball trying to get out of trouble from the pass rush. The Aggies grabbed the ball out of mid-air and returned it for a touchdown to cut the lead to 14-9 early in the second quarter.

Thanks in large part to the running of junior Brian Hill (207 yards, two touchdowns)UW responded well. But Allen finished the half 5 of 5 for 106 yards and two touchdowns. I wrote about this in my column Sunday in the Wyoming Tribune Eagle and Laramie Boomerang, and also at wyosports.net. Here’s the link:

http://www.wyosports.net/university_of_wyoming/football/lighting-the-fire-allen-uw-take-big-step-forward-in/article_c4118418-7d5a-11e6-9e47-e34f0bd1ac5e.html

Here is Allen after the game:

Defensively, UW did a much better job in not allowing big plays. In its first two games the Cowboys allowed 14 plays of 20 yards or more, including nine of 30-plus yards. UC Davis’ longest plays were 25 and 24 yards.

And, I continue to be impressed with how UW has defended the interior run game in the first three games. UC Davis had just 74 rushing yards — the second-fewest in the Bohl era. But even against Northern Illinois and Nebraska, the Cowboys have more than held their own in that area.

Sophomore defensive end Carl Granderson has a sack in each of the first three games, and UW has five as a team. It had 10 sacks all of last season.

Here is Granderson after the game:

Going into the UC Davis game, I thought UW would struggle defensively without senior outside linebacker D.J. May. However, junior Tim Kamana (four tackles) and junior nickel Jalen Ortiz (three tackles) played well.

To say UW doesn’t have room for improvement would be wrong. It still can be better in a lot of areas, but the UC Davis game was yet another good step in its progress. The next step in UW’s progression is Friday at Eastern Michigan, the same team that beat UW 48-29 in Laramie last season. The Eagles are 2-1 and average 256.7 passing yards per game. Another test for UW’s secondary — and defense overall.

UW will try to snap an eight-game road losing streak dating back to 2014, and a seven-game road nonconference losing streak going back to 2013.

For more coverage from the UC Davis game, and other UW sports coverage, see the Wyoming Tribune Eagle and Laramie Boomerang and log on to wyosports.net.

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