LARAMIE -- OK, we're a few days late getting to this.

My fault.

It was not easy getting on an airplane in Phoenix and leaving 70-degree weather en route to reality. Here we are, though, back in the saddle. Before we shift out focus completely to offensive coordinators, buzzer beaters, more recruiting and a headline-filled offseason, let's take a look back at the year that was.

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Craig Bohl's swansong was one for the record books. Wyoming, for the first time since 1996, won nine games in a season, starting with a double-overtime thriller over Texas Tech.

There was the miracle victory over Appalachian State, the upset of No. 24 Fresno State and yet another win over Border War rival Colorado State, the seventh in the last 10 meetings.

Bohl certainly owned that series, didn't he?

The Cowboys capped the 2023 campaign in walk-off fashion, John Hoyland connecting from 24 yards out as time expired to upend Toledo 16-15 in the Arizona Bowl. Bohl, Manhattan in hand, rode off into the sunset with a 61-60 record in Laramie.

Now, it's Jay Sawvel's task to do do what he couldn't -- win a Mountain West championship. That clock started ticking the minute the ball dropped.

Here are the Top-10 most-read stories on this website in 2023. Some are obvious. Others, hell, even I was shocked. Let's check it out:

 

Wyoming running back Harrison Waylee left Saturday night's 24-19 victory over No. 24 Fresno State with an apparent leg injury./ DJ Johnson photo
Wyoming running back Harrison Waylee left Saturday night's 24-19 victory over No. 24 Fresno State with an apparent leg injury./ DJ Johnson photo
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10. Wyoming football staff punching back in NCAA Transfer Portal

If you only look at the sheer numbers, it appears Wyoming has been getting worked in college football's version of free agency. It hasn't. Harrison Waylee, Andrew Peasley, Jakorey Hawkins, Ayir Asante, and other Cowboys who led this program to nine wins this fall, all came from other schools. Check out that story right HERE.

 

Easton Gibbs (from left), Kolbey Taylor and Shae Suiaunoa combine to bring down Fresno State wideout Jaelen Gill during the Cowboys' 24-19 victory Saturday night in Laramie./ DJ Johnson photo
Easton Gibbs (from left), Kolbey Taylor and Shae Suiaunoa combine to bring down Fresno State wideout Jaelen Gill during the Cowboys' 24-19 victory Saturday night in Laramie./ DJ Johnson photo
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9. Rants and Raves: Fresno State Edition

Ahh yes, the ever-popular weekly feature, Rants and Raves, which comes out every Saturday after a Wyoming football game. This is a mishmash of fan comments on the internet. It's funny, it's maddening, it's real. Check that out right HERE.

 

Wyoming wide receiver Ayir Asante outraces the Portland State secondary for a 64-yard touchdown in the first quarter Saturday afternoon in Laramie./ DJ Johnson photo
Wyoming wide receiver Ayir Asante outraces the Portland State secondary for a 64-yard touchdown in the first quarter Saturday afternoon in Laramie./ DJ Johnson photo
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8. Tuck's Take: Wyoming, this is your wake-up call

The Cowboys always seem to struggle with that one FBS team on the schedule each year, don't they? While Bohl's 'Boys handled Portland State last September, the Vikings -- fresh off an 81-7 loss at Oregon -- made things a little too interesting in the fourth quarter. Wyoming held on for the 31-17 victory, but in this column I asked the simple question: Why does this program consistently not show up for this annual meeting? You can read that HERE.

 

Wyoming head coach Craig Bohl looks up at the Jumbotron before emerging from the home locker room./ DJ Johnson photo
Wyoming head coach Craig Bohl looks up at the Jumbotron before emerging from the home locker room./ DJ Johnson photo
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7. Tuck's Take: Craig Bohl, Wyoming football is at a crossroads

Roughly a month before Bohl announced his retirement, this subject became a quick headline after Wyoming was all but eliminated from the Mountain West title race. With just one year remaining on his contract, surely Bohl would not enter 2024 a lame duck. Either an extension or a retirement announcement must be on the horizon. Now, we know. Read that column right HERE.

 

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - MARCH 02: Head coach Jeff Linder of the Wyoming Cowboys looks on during his team's game against the UNLV Rebels at the Thomas & Mack Center on March 02, 2022 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Rebels defeated the Cowboys 64-57. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - MARCH 02: Head coach Jeff Linder of the Wyoming Cowboys looks on during his team's game against the UNLV Rebels at the Thomas & Mack Center on March 02, 2022 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Rebels defeated the Cowboys 64-57. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
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6. Wyoming's Jeff Linder releases statement about recent exodus

What a difference a year makes, huh? After sneaking into the NCAA Tournament in 2021-22, just 12 months later, Wyoming lost nearly its entire roster to the NCAA Transfer Portal, including leading scorer Graham Ike, after a 9-22 campaign. Head coach Jeff Linder released a statement, pleading with fans to embrace change. Read that again, if you dare, right HERE.

 

LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 7, 2023: USC Trojans offensive lineman Jonah Monheim (79) and USC Trojans offensive lineman Emmanuel Pregnon (70) work to keep Arizona Wildcats defensive lineman Russell Davis II (99) and Arizona Wildcats linebacker Jacob Manu (5) from getting to USC Trojans quarterback Caleb Williams (13) at the LA Memorial Coliseum on October 7, 2023 in Los Angeles, California.(Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 7, 2023: USC Trojans offensive lineman Jonah Monheim (79) and USC Trojans offensive lineman Emmanuel Pregnon (70) work to keep Arizona Wildcats defensive lineman Russell Davis II (99) and Arizona Wildcats linebacker Jacob Manu (5) from getting to USC Trojans quarterback Caleb Williams (13) at the LA Memorial Coliseum on October 7, 2023 in Los Angeles, California.(Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
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5. Portal Tracker: Let's check in on former Wyoming football players

Remember when Wyoming football faced an exodus of its own? After the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl in 2021, starters -- lots and lots of starters -- started announcing their decision to leave the program on social media. A year later, we checked in on those guys and how they were performing at their new schools. Though most crowed about not caring, the page views say otherwise. Read that HERE.

 

Craig Bohl looks on before the opening kickoff against Hawaii in what would be his final home game as the head coach at Wyoming./ DJ Johnson photo
Craig Bohl looks on before the opening kickoff against Hawaii in what would be his final home game as the head coach at Wyoming./ DJ Johnson photo
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4. Social media reacts to Craig Bohl's retirement at Wyoming

Fans, friends and former players all shared their thoughts on Bohl's retirement announcement on the world wide web. There were some great tributes to the three-time national champion, who then became the longest-tenured head coach in Wyoming football history. Check those out right HERE.

 

Wyoming fullback Caleb Driskill (No. 36) celebrates a four-yard touchdown pass in the second quarter of a 35-33 double-OT victory over Texas Tech Saturday in Laramie./ DJ Johnson photo
Wyoming fullback Caleb Driskill (No. 36) celebrates a four-yard touchdown pass in the second quarter of a 35-33 double-OT victory over Texas Tech Saturday in Laramie./ DJ Johnson photo
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3. Rants and Raves: Texas Tech Edition

What did I tell you, people love to rant ... and even rave sometimes. There was plenty of love flowing after the Cowpokes pulled off the 35-33 upset in double-overtime. What a night that was. Read about it HERE.

 

CHAMPAIGN, IL - AUGUST 27: Wyoming Cowboys running back D.Q. James (7) warms up for the college football game between the Wyoming Cowboys and the Illinois Fighting Illini on August 27, 2022, at Memorial Stadium in Champaign, Illinois. (Photo by Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
CHAMPAIGN, IL - AUGUST 27: Wyoming Cowboys running back D.Q. James (7) warms up for the college football game between the Wyoming Cowboys and the Illinois Fighting Illini on August 27, 2022, at Memorial Stadium in Champaign, Illinois. (Photo by Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
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2. BREAKING: DQ James dismissed from Wyoming football program

Fans certainly love the drama of the game, don't they? Whether its the portal or a dismissal, it definitely becomes the news of the day. That was apparent when running back DQ James was let go after the Cowboys' miracle win over Appalachian State. The speedy back from Texas is currently in the NCAA Transfer Portal and has yet to find a new home. Read about that right HERE.

 

Wyoming tight end John Michael Gyllenborg stretches the ball over the line for a touchdown during the second overtime of the Cowboys 35-33 upset victory Saturday night over Texas Tech in Laramie./ DJ Johnson photo
Wyoming tight end John Michael Gyllenborg stretches the ball over the line for a touchdown during the second overtime of the Cowboys 35-33 upset victory Saturday night over Texas Tech in Laramie./ DJ Johnson photo
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1. Turning point, unsung hero and what's next for UW football

If I'm being honest, this is probably my favorite weekly feature to write during football season. What play or moment shifted all the momentum? Who did something important and received little to know credit? What are the best quotes to come out of the postgame press conference. This is a fun one. The most read story of 2023 came after that improbable win over the Red Raiders on opening day. More than 200,000 people spent an average of 2:34 reading that piece. That was fun to re-read. I hope you check it out, too. You can do that right HERE.

University of Wyoming’s Top 50 Football Players

During the summer of 2021, 7220Sports.com counted down the Top 50 football players in University of Wyoming history, presented by Premier Bone & Joint Centers, Worthy of Wyoming.

The rules are simple: What was the player's impact while in Laramie? That means NFL stats, draft status or any other accolade earned outside of UW is irrelevant when it comes to this list.

This isn't a one-man job. This task called for a panel of experts. Joining 7220's Cody Tucker are Robert GagliardiJared NewlandRyan Thorburn, and Kevin McKinney.

We all compiled our own list of 50 and let computer averages do the work. Think BCS -- only we hope this catalog is fairer.

Don't agree with a selection? Feel free to sound off on our Twitter: @7220sports - #Top50UWFB

Gallery Credit: 7220Sports.com

- University of Wyoming’s Top 50 Football Players

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