Wyoming at Nevada football primer

Some news and notes prior to Wyoming’s game at Nevada, which kicks off at 8:30 p.m. MT Saturday at Mackay Stadium in Reno.

Per normal, here is my No. 1 key to the game for the Cowboys:

James Butler

James Butler

The Butler didn’t do it: Wyoming’s defense must slow down Nevada junior running back James Butler, who is fourth in the Mountain West in rushing (117.4 yards per game) and third in all-purpose yards (149.3 ypg). UW did a good job against Butler last season as he had 10 carries for 51 yards, but that was due in large part to it leading 28-7 late in the third quarter. If Butler gets going, that opens other things up for Nevada’s offense.

Do you agree or disagree? For more keys to the game, and also a story on Butler, see Saturday’s Wyoming Tribune Eagle and Laramie Boomerang, and log on to wyosports.net.

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Wyoming vs. Nevada football preview: Notes, quotes and video

First, my No. 1 key for Wyoming for its homecoming game Saturday against Nevada:

Eliminating turnovers: You can say that about any game, but Wyoming can’t have four turnovers like it did in last week’s 31-17 loss at Air Force and expect to win. Air Force scored 21 points off those miscues. Turnovers by anyone are costly, but the Cowboys can’t have their best offensive players doing it, i.e. sophomore running back Brian Hill and redshirt senior quarterback Cameron Coffman. Both had two turnovers against Air Force. UW had a season-high four turnovers that led to 21 Air Force points.

I get into this and other keys in my video preview of the game:

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Mountain West football media day – West Division notes

Here are some news and notes from Tuesday’s first day of Mountain West football media day activities here in Las Vegas. Tuesday featured teams from the West Division. Players and coaches from the Mountain Division get their turn Wednesday.

–Nevada coach Brian Polian isn’t one to hold back his opinions, and he wasn’t happy that this season’s rivalry game with UNLV is not at the end of the season,

Brian Polian

Brian Polian

like many rivalry games are around the nation, or during the weekend of Nevada Day, which celebrates when Nevada became a state back in 1864. Nevada Day is Friday, Oct. 30 this year.

This year’s game is Oct. 3 at UNLV.

This reminds me of the Border War with Wyoming and Colorado State. There was a decent stretch when that game was played at the end of the season with other rivalry games. However, that usually came during the weekend of Thanksgiving, and attendance in Laramie or Fort Collins were poor with students not around, and usually one of the two teams not being very good.

I’ve written in the past that the Border War should be played more toward the middle of the season. The weather is better and there is more fan interest. Attendance figures at both schools back that up. Not sure what to say about the Nevada-UNLV game, but one thing is certain, Polian doesn’t like the set up this year.

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UW-Nevada pregame notes

Twenty years ago, Larry Shyatt said he would have been upset — and everybody would have known it.

But at 61, Shyatt was disappointed his Wyoming men’s basketball team lost its first game of the season, 63-61 at home to Boise State Wednesday on a buzzer-beating 3-pointer by junior guard Jeff Elorriaga.

He just kept his emotions in check.

“In my 40s I would have been throwing chairs, screaming, yelling and cussing,” he said. “But it is hard for me to do that when I know our team was connected. They were doing all the right things, other than (Boise State) had the ball in the final seconds.”

The Cowboys try to avoid an 0-2 Mountain West start at 4 p.m. today at Nevada (9-6, 0-1) in the Wolf Pack’s first-ever home game as a MW member.

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