Some pregame reading for Saturday’s Wyoming-Boise State game. Kickoff is at 5 p.m. MT at Jonah Field at War Memorial Stadium.
First, my No. 1 key to the game for the Cowboys. There are more, but this was what I choose as my top one:
Play keep away: Meaning Wyoming needs to win the time of possession game, and obviously, finish drives with points. Boise State has one of the most powerful offenses in the Mountain West, and the best way to slow them down is to keep it on the sideline.
Now for some other notes and quotes:
— Junior running back Brian Hill needs one rushing touchdown to tie for sixth place on UW’s career list, and two to tie for fourth. Hill currently has 24 rushing touchdowns. Hill, the reigning Mountain West Offensive Player of the Week, is second in the nation with 144.3 yards per game. Hill’s count part today, Boise State junior Jeremy McNichols, averages 130.7 yards per game. He has 16 touchdowns this season (12 rushing, four receiving), which is tied for the national lead with Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson. McNichols has 42 touchdowns since the start of the 2015 season, which is the most in the Football Bowl Subdivision.
— “I’ve voted on the coach’s (poll) before. What it is showing is that we’re taking steps forward. You don’t vote somebody just because you like a team. It shows somebody’s paying attention to the wins we’ve had.” — UW coach Craig Bohl on his team getting one vote in this week’s top 25 coaches poll. It’s the first time UW has received votes in any top 25 poll since 2007.
— The Cowboys are going for their fourth home win in as many games this season. The last time they won their first four home games in a season was 2004. UW went to a bowl game that year, beating UCLA 24-21 in the Las Vegas Bowl. A win Saturday also will even UW’s home record at 20-20 for this decade.
— “We’re just trying to go 1-0 this week. We’re going against a 13th-ranked Boise State team. We know they’re going to be really good. It’s about preparation and getting down to the nitty-gritty details of what they do really well and try to exploit them. It’s sweet to have all those other incentives. It’s a big step for us and we’re looking forward to the challenge.” — UW redshirt sophomore quarterback Josh Allen.
— How good as Boise State been since 2000? It leads the nation among all Football Bowl Subdivision teams in conference winning percentage (.898), overall winning percentage (.851) and points per game (39.94). The Broncos are one of nine unbeaten teams in the FBS this season. Boise State is No. 13 in the country this week, and has been ranked in the national polls 15 consecutive years. It is 98-13 as a ranked team. And, The Broncos are 5-0 all-time at Wyoming, and won those games by an average of 30.8 points per game. UW is 0-10 all-time against Boise State.
— Senior wide receiver Tanner Gentry needs six catches to move into 10th place on UW’s career receptions list. Gentry has 146. Gentry moved into the top 10 in career receiving yards at UW at Nevada. He now has 2,101.
— “BYU did a good job of taking the ball away. There were a couple of plays where I thought BYU ball-hawked really well and stripped the ball well and went up for a couple of picks. I think we need to look at what BYU did in going after the football. We’ve done a really good job of that in the past. We need to do a better job of that this week.” — Bohl on forcing turnovers and how BYU was able to force turnovers last week at Boise State, despite losing 28-27.
— Boise State enters the game with a minus-8 turnover margin, and has forced only three turnovers all season. UW has a plus-4 turnover margin, second-best in the MW. In their five wins this season, the Cowboys have committed only two turnovers.
For coverage from the game, see Sunday’s Wyoming Tribune Eagle and Laramie Boomerang, and log on to wyosports.net.