Wyoming 28, Air Force 14 – postgame thoughts

A road conference win over a rival, solidifying a spot in this year’s bowl picture and keeping hopes alive for a division title within the conference.

Wyoming accomplished all that with its 28-14 victory at Air Force Saturday night. But the loss of junior starting quarterback Josh Allen to some sort of right arm injury, which occurred late in the first half, put a damper on all that.

That was the topic of my column from there game, which you can click on here:

http://www.wyosports.net/university_of_wyoming/football/gagliardi-column-big-win-harder-to-enjoy-with-allen-injury/article_58253440-c785-11e7-b990-47896471f0f2.html

Fourth-year UW coach Craig Bohl said he would know more after Sunday, and hopefully Monday on Allen’s injury when he meets with the media again. Bohl didn’t say much after the game, but here is what he did say.

A lot of UW fans didn’t like the sequence of plays when Allen got hurt. The first was a double pass involving Allen, and he got drilled. And, he was gingerly moving his arm/shoulder around. But he also got hit hard two plays later, which was the play Bohl eluded to in the postgame interview where he thought Allen got hurt.

UW rode its defense, and one timely offensive drive in the fourth quarter for this win. The Cowboys forced three turnovers, although the third was more of a fumble lost by Air Force junior quarterback Arion Worthman. Junior quarterback Nick Smith threw a 38-yard pass to true freshman running back Trey Woods to set up the Cowboys’ final touchdown of the game.

Here is Smith after the game:

I didn’t get any video of the turnovers the defense forced, but here are some plays from near the end of the game by that group that sealed the victory.

A lot of guys played well on defense once again, but UW’s two only experienced interior defensive linemen were outstanding in sophomore Youhanna Ghaifan and true freshman Javaree Jackson. Ghaifan had 11 tackles, Jackson had 10 and they combined for 10 solo stops. That’s impressive production from those positions.

Junior free safety Marcus Epps had a first-quarter interception that led to a UW touchdowns. Here he is after the game about the defense … and more.

At 7-3 overall and 5-1 in the Mountain West, UW is assured no worse than second place in the Mountain Division. Thanks to Colorado State blowing a huge lead at home to Boise State, the chances of UW winning the division are slim to none … and slim just left town.

As for bowl projections, numerous national websites has UW going to either the Arizona Bowl in Tucson or Famous Idaho Potato Bowl in Boise. Bowl announcements won’t be made until Dec. 3 or 4.

The Cowboys’ last home game is this coming Saturday against Fresno State (7-3, 5-1). Will be interesting how that game goes, and the events leading up to it. As good as UW has played and the things it has accomplished, there definitely is a different feel now.

For more coverage from the Air Force game, see wyosports.net.

One thought on “Wyoming 28, Air Force 14 – postgame thoughts

  1. Josh Allen, and to a lesser extent, Cooper Rothe, have carried the Wyo offense on their backs this entire year. Hope Josh can return, but if not, it’s time for the rest of the O to step up and contribute. Saw some good runs and catches the last couple of weeks from Woods, Evans, and Hall. Kellen Overstreet looks like he finally is healthy and punishing tacklers. Wide receivers, tight ends and slot Austin Conway are coming into their own. Nick Smith played well a couple of years ago and the rustiness will go away this week. Now, if our Offensive line can get as nasty as the defense, we will be in good shape for the rest of the season!

    Go Pokes!

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