Cowboys’ defense still swimming

The Wyoming football team did some scrimmaging Wednesday in its fourth practice of spring drills at Jonah Field at War Memorial Stadium.

But first-year defensive coordinator and secondary coach Chris Tormey said his guys best describe what you do in another sport.

“We’re still swimming,” he said. “(Monday) was a nightmare. We had a hard time geting lined up The offense put some new routes in and we didn’t defend them very well. It’s up and down. Monday was a down day. Wednesday was an up day. (The coaches) have to be our own worst critics Thrursday watching film and try to come back Friday and be up again.

“I thought our effort was pretty good for the first scrimmage. We did a decent job of getting lined up. But there’s a lot of room for improvement. I saw a lot of receivers open out there, and the next scrimmage the offense will take advantge of that. We’re no where near where we want to be.”

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UW football award winners

The Wyoming football team held annual football senior banquet the day after the win over CSU last Sunday. Here are the individual winners: 

Gabe Knapton earned the Iron Man Award for the second consecutive year as the Pokes’ top performer in the weight room.

The Brian Lee Scholar-Athlete Award went to junior strong safety Luke Ruff.

Tashaun Gipson was the Defensive Back of the Year.

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Breaking down All-MW football selections

One had to wonder if those who voted in the All-Mountain West football teams would go with TCU’s Gary Patterson, Boise State’s Chris Petersen or Wyoming’s Dave Christensen as the coach of the year.

By the way, here is the link to the entire MW All-Conference teams and individual awards list: http://www.themwc.com/sports/m-footbl/spec-rel/120611aab.html

Patterson followed up last season’s No. 2 national finish and Rose Bowl championship with another undefeated league record and a third straight conference title. Right or wrong, fair or unfair, Petersen likely lost his chance after his team lost at home to TCU, even though the Broncos once again finished the regular season ranked in the top 10 nationally.

Then there was Christensen, who took a team picked to finish sixth in the MW in the preseason by the media and had the Cowboys finish third with a true freshman quarterback.

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Twice as nice for Smith

For the second time this season, Wyoming true freshman quarterback Brett Smith was named the Mountain West’s Offensive Player of the Week. Smith had 352 yards of total offense, ran for two touchdowns and threw for another in the Cowboys’ 31-10 win over New Mexico last Saturday.

“I don’t think anything surprises me any more,” said coach Dave Christensen during his Monday news conference about Smith. “I think we expect him to go out, compete and play well. He has every week. I think he still gets better and is still learning. I’m glad he’s our quarterback for the next three years after this one.”

For more on Smith, and what his teammates are saying, see Tuesday’s Wyoming Tribune Eagle and Laramie Boomerang. Also, check back to the blog tomorrow morning for what offensive coordinator Gregg Brandon has to say about both Smith, and Boise State.

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UW-Air Force quotes

Some quotes from Wyoming players and coaches after the Cowboys’ 25-17 win over Air Force last Saturday.

“I swear I’ve never played in in something like that.” — true freshman quarterback Brett Smith on the winds that gusted upwards to 60 miles per hour.

“Who gives a crap. We’re going to show up and play whoever’s on the schedule. That’s for bettors and I bet on my guys to win every week. We don’t care what the odds-makers pick.” — coach Dave Christensen when asked if he knew UW was a 16-point underdog against Air Force.

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UW-San Diego St. postgame thoughts

Shades of 2009?

Wyoming won at San Diego State in 2009 30-27, and came back from a 27-6 fourth-quarter deficit. Saturday night was the same final score for UW, but this time it hung on for the win.

“We’re very excited about this win and what it means to the conference for us,” said junior receiver Chris McNeill, who posted career-highs with eight catches for 111 yards and two touchdowns — all in the first half.

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UW Media Monday

Wyoming faces the nation’s leading rusher Saturday in San Diego State sophomore Ronnie Hillman, who averages 138.8 yards per game and has 10 rushing touchdowns.

Do you think he’s the best back UW has faced?

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Nine UW players recognized by Phil Steele

Nine Wyoming football players made Phil Steele’s midseason All-Mountain West team, which was released today.

In my earlier Twitter post on this, I said there were eight. Sorry, math and counting were never my specialty. LOL

None made the first team, but three made the second team and six made the third team.

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