Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Mountain West 2010-Wyoming Cowboys
2009 Record: 7-6 (4-4)
Head Coach: Dave Christensen (2nd season, 7-6)
Offensive Coordinator: Marcus Arroyo (2nd season)
Defensive Coordinator: Marty English (2nd season)
2009 Bowl Game: New Mexico Bowl, defeated Fresno State 35-28
Offense: Christensen and Arroyo took a big risk last season and started a true freshman at QB, and all Austyn Carta-Samuels did was produce and bring Wtoming to a bowl in Christensen's first season. Christensen, who was the architect of MIssouri's big time offense, has brought his system with him to Laramie, and although you couldn't tell statistaclly, it was starting to bear fruit. This unit really has to improve behind Carta-Samuels in 2010, as it finished 107th nationally last season. Carta-Samuels was highly accurate, didn't turn the ball over in buckets, and led the Cowboys to 5 come back wins last season. Alvester Alexander, another sophomore, is expected to be the primary RB this season, but Andrew Meredith, a converted CB, could work into the rotation after a solid spring. 3 WRs return, but the right side of the line is being rebuilt.
Defense: Only 3 of the front 7 return from last season. Josh Biezuns and Gabe KNapton both start at DE, but both were starting LBs last season and are both a little small for the DE spots. Brian Hendricks returns at LB, and he had 23 tackles against Air Force last season. The secondary was stellar last season, and the enitre unit retunrs intact. FS Chris Prosinski averaged 10.8 tackles per game in 2009, good for 10th nationally.
Special Teams: All set here. Ian Watts returns for his sophomore year with a scholarship in hand after he won 3 games last season. Austin McCoy is as solid as any punter in the country.
Wins: 9/4 Southern Utah, 10/2 @ Toledo, 10/30 San Diego State, 11/6 @ New Mexico, 11/13 @ UNLV
Toss Up Games: 9/25 Air Force, 11/20 Colorado State
Losses: 9/11 @ Texas, 9/18 Boise State, 10/9 @ TCU, 10/16 Utah, 10/23 @ BYU
The Cowboys will have a chance to make a run at the end of the season, but the front end of the season is loaded with bear traps. Wyoming must play Texas, Boise State, and Air Force in consecutive weeks, and also must play TCU, Utah, and BYU in consecutive weeks. This is gong to be a very challenging slate.
Outlook: Strangely enough, Wyoming may be a better team than last season, but may have the same record or even worse. Expect Christensen to open up more of the play book on offense, as he limited plays due to having a freshman QB last season. Development comes in stages, and I believe that the Cowboys stand to make a real splash in 2011.