UW football practices indoors

Wyoming practiced in its indoor practice facility Tuesday morning, but it wasn’t because the weather outside in Laramie was bad.

The weather forecast for the Cowboys’ game at Texas State Saturday night in San Marcos, Texas, is for temperatures in the high 70s to low to mid-80s by kickoff time (5 p.m. MT). There is a 60 percent chance of rain, and the humidity levels will be in the 60 percent range.

“We tried to get the heat turned up in here a little bit and get acclimated to the temperature,” coach Dave Christensen said. “We can’t make it 75 in here, but it was good. They got a good sweat going.”

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UW defensive, special teams depth chart for Nebraska

Friday I wrote what I thought Wyoming’s offensive depth chart for the Aug. 31 season-opener at Nebraska would look like.

Today I offer you what I think the depth chart will look like on defense and special teams. As always, I welcome your comments, thoughts and questions.

DEFENSE

Nose tackle

Patrick Mertens, Sr., 6-5, 295

Uso Olive, RFr., 6-1, 293

Chase Appleby, RFr., 6-0, 289

Defensive tackle

Justin Bernthaler, Sr., 6-2, 260

Troy Boyland, Jr., 6-2, 302

Defensive end

Eddie Yarbrough, So., 6-3, 257

J.J. Quinlan, Sr., 6-1, 248

Buck

Sonny Puletasi, Jr., 6-3, 251

Saiosi Hala’api’api, So., 6-2, 248

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VIDEO: Eddie Yarbrough

Wyoming sophomore defensive lineman Eddie Yarbrough talks about getting a look at defensive tackle recently, after playing last season and most of the spring at defensive end in this interview that was done on Monday, April 22, 2013 in Laramie.

For more on Yarbrough and other potential changes on defense, see Tuesday’s Wyoming Tribune Eagle and Laramie Boomerang, or log on to www.wyosports.net.

VIDEO: Chris Tormey

Wyoming defensive coordinator Chris Tormey talks about some of the latest changes, or experiments, he and the coaches are looking at along the defense this spring during this interview on Monday, April 22, 2013 in Laramie.

For more on this story, see Tuesday’s Wyoming Tribune Eagle and Laramie Boomerang  or log on to www.wyosports.net.

Olive getting his chance for Cowboys

Uso Olive

Uso Olive

The time has come for Wyoming’s Uso Olive.

The 6-foot-1, 300-pound redshirt freshman defensive tackle has had a lot of hype for the Cowboys since he signed last year. Even though he redshirted last season and didn’t play, many consider Olive a key in improving UW’s run defense that allowed 232 yards per game last season.

Olive moved up to the No. 1 defense last week after an injury to senior Justin Bernthaler, who played defensive end last season.

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McNeill out for season finale vs. San Diego State

To me, Wyoming receiver Chris McNeill has been “Mr. Reliable” throughout his career.

No matter who threw the ball, McNeill often was the one the quarterback wanted to get the ball to when it was third-and-8 or even on fourth down. More often than not, McNeill came up with the catch.

Unfortunately, McNeill’s career is done as he suffered a knee injury after a catch in the fourth quarter in UW’s 28-23 win at UNLV last Saturday and won’t play in the season finale at home against San Diego State Saturday in Laramie.

“I have countless memories of Chris,” senior center and co-captain Nick Carlson said. “I feel like every fourth down situation we’ve been in it has been him that came up with a catch. That comes from his understanding of the offense, his awareness in space and how to be found by (sophomore quarterback Brett Smith).”

Carlson quickly recalled a fourth-down catch at Air Force last season, and one in Smith’s first game against Weber State at home. I’m sure UW fans can come up with several more.

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Video: Justin Bernthaler

Wyoming junior defensive end Justin Bernthaler was born and raised in Germany and found his way to Laramie. Here is his story and he likely will make his third career start when the Cowboys play at UNLV at 2 p.m. today.

For more on Bernthaler and the game, see today’s Wyoming Tribune Eagle and Laramie Boomerang, and go to www.wyosports.net. Also check out WyoSports senior editor Robert Gagliardi’s live chat/blog from today’s game, which starts at 1:30 p.m. Log on here at the blog or at wyosports.net.

Biggest key to fall camp for UW

Wyoming begins fall camp Monday morning, and I talk about the top five concerns/things to watch in my column in Sunday’s Wyoming Tribune Eagle and Laramie Boomerang, and also online at www.wyosports.net.

Here is my No. 1 thing to watch, and would love to hear what you think. Hope you will read the rest of the column in the papers or online and give me your feedback.

1. Defense

Much of this involves the defensive line, and who exactly will play.

This unit took a hit when senior Ben Durbin, a projected starter at defensive end, left after the spring semester and will finish his career at Iowa State.

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Thoughts on MW preseason poll, team

For the most part, the Mountain West Preseason All-Conference team and predicted order of finish was similar to what I submitted.

There were 30 people who voted. Here’s the predicted order of finish:

1. Boise State (27)            296

2. Nevada                            244

3. Fresno State (2)           231

4. Wyoming                        213

5. San Diego St. (1)          173

6. Air Force                         170

7. Hawaii                              116

8. Colorado St.                   111

9. UNLV                                63

10. New Mexico                   33

I had Wyoming third, San Diego State fourth and Fresno State fifth. Other than that, everything was the same.

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