Behind the numbers: Wyoming vs. Air Force
LARAMIE --When you play these guys, numbers are bound to be a major part of the storyline.
Typically, they're gaudy ones, too.
For instance, Air Force averaged more than 508 yards rushing per game, coming into this one. The Falcons embarrassed Northern Iowa and Colorado, running the trademark triple option to perfection.
Turns out, Wyoming isn't either one of those teams.
"You have to give credit to them," Air Force head coach Troy Calhoun said postgame. "They played really well, especially up front. We have to block better. We'll learn from this."
Something tells me you might enjoy the stats behind the Cowboys' 17-14 upset of their Front Range rivals Friday night inside of War Memorial Stadium:
Entering this one, Air Force, by a long shot, was the top rushing team in America. Tonight, that number above is what the Falcons racked up on the ground on 40 attempts. If you're keeping score at home, that's an average of just 4.3 yards per carry.
Brad Roberts was the fifth-leading rusher in the nation after two weeks. He gashed the Panthers and Buffs to the tune of 288 yards on just 33 carries. Tonight, the senior fullback carried the ball just 15 times. The number above is on his final stat line.
That's how many yards the Falcons rushed for in the first quarter on seven attempts.
That's the amount of yards Calhoun's offense finished with in this one, far below its average of 567 per game.
That's how many yards per play the Falcons were averaging before tonight. The Cowboys held them to just five.
On the flipside, this is how many yards Wyoming ran for against a Falcons' team that allowed just 115 coming in to the Mountain West opener. Titus Swen led the way for the Cowboys, rushing for 102 yards on 19 carries. He also scored the go-ahead touchdown in the fourth quarter.
Wyoming won the time-of-possession battle against a team that simply never allows that to happen. The home team also ran 58 plays compared to just 54 for the Falcons.
That's how many sacks Air Force had allowed through two games. Now that number sits at one, courtesy of UW defensive end DeVonne Harris.
Carson Bay didn't punt one time in the Falcons' 48-17 season-opening victory over UNI. He did put boot to ball twice in last Saturday's 41-10 thrashing off in-state rival, Colorado. Tonight, he was a tad busier than that. Bay punted four times against the Cowboys, averaging 42.8 yards per kick.
That's how many times these old rivals have now met on the football field. The Falcons still hold a 30-27-3 edge in the series.
Wyoming has now pulled to .500 in Mountain West Conference openers. The Cowboys are now 11-12 overall against Air Force since the league was formed back in 1999.
That's Andrew Peasley's completion percentage against the Falcons. Wyoming's QB connected on 18-of-23 throws for 162 yards and a touchdown in the win. His only blemish, a telegraphed interception on the first play of the second quarter. Peasley's completion numbers have exceeded 63% or better in three straight games. Coincidentally, all UW victories.
That's how many catches UW wideout Joshua Cobbs came down with against the Falcons, tying a career high he set against Utah State last November. The sophomore from San Antonio finished with a team-best 45 yards.
That's how many different receivers snagged passes from Peasley in the win.
Wyoming's opening drive of the game took that many plays, chewed up 7:32 of game clock and rolled up 73 yards, eventually culminating in a 20-yard chip-shot field goal from John Hoyland.
UW needed its veteran defensive tackles to be their best players on defense tonight. They were. Cole Godbout tallied that many tackles against Air Force and added a tackle for loss and two quarterback hurries. His running mate, Jordan Bertagnole, finished with six. Their ultimate impact didn't necessarily end up on the final stat sheet. But you can ask Roberts how good this duo was.
These are Hoyland's updated stats when it comes to career field goals. The back-to-back Mountain West Special Teams Player of the Week got a much-deserved break in this one, drilling only a 20-yarder in the win.
That's the temperature of the fever Easton Gibbs said he was running this afternoon after coming down with a sickness Thursday night. It was a brutal 24 hours for the sophomore linebacker, who wasn't cleared to play until right before kickoff. The California product tallied six tackles, including a tackle for loss, in the win.
The smallest crowd in three games this fall entered through the turnstiles tonight. Yes, it was a Friday night game. It was still an electric atmosphere in The War.
Raise your hand if you thought this would be Wyoming's record after four games? Remember that opening-day clunker in Illinois? Seems like ages ago, right? Wyoming and BYU will renew a rivalry next Saturday night in Provo that stretches all the way back to 1922.