LARAMIE -- It's officially "series season."

This summer, with the help of some longtime Wyoming football followers, we will count down the Top 25 homegrown products in program history.

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As always, what these guys did in professional football doesn't matter. This is all about production in Laramie. A couple of the guys on this final list may not have been born here, but they grew up in Wyoming and graduated from an in-state high school.

Once we put a bow on these selections, we'll move on to other states like Colorado, Nebraska, Texas, etc. You get the picture:


Pederson Selmer 1950 vs. Baylor WMS Dedication 44
Pederson Selmer 1950 vs. Baylor WMS Dedication 44

No. 11 - Selmer Pederson

Safety, 1949-51, Lander, Wyo.


Résumé in Laramie

Once dubbed the "best safety in football" by his Wyoming head coach Bowden Wyatt, Selmer Pederson was a two-time All-Skyline selection. He was also an honorable mention All-American in 1950, the same season the Pokes topped Washington & Lee 20-7 in the Gator Bowl, giving the program its first ever postseason victory. He even picked off a pass in that win, snagging an interception from Gil Bocetti. During his three years in Laramie, Pederson and the Cowboys defense pitched 13 shutouts, including six straight in 1949. Wyoming outscored Colorado State, Montana State, Utah State, Utah, BYU and Northern Colorado 244 to goose egg. That included the most lopsided victory in school history, a 103-0 beatdown of the Bears from Greeley. The Cowboys netted an overall record of 26-3-1 during Pederson's tenure. Opponents only reached double-digits on the scoreboard eight times. Against Denver during the 1950 season, Pederson picked off three passes. That's still tied for the best single-game performance ever with Shamiel Gary and Brian Lee. Pederson was also a standout punt returner in Laramie and still holds the record for return yards and average yards per return with 1,080 and 13, respectively. Pederson set a pair of records in 1949 that still stand today. He averaged 16.1 yards per attempt as a sophomore. Against Montana State that same season, Pederson gashed the Bobcats to the tune of 36.3 yards per return. He also set conference records for most punt returns (83). Pederson was inducted into the school's Hall of Fame back in 2012.


About Lander

Lander sits on the south end of the Wind River Indian Reservation in Fremont County. The population was roughly 7,500 at the last census. Attractions near the Lander area include: Sinks Canyon State Park, Shoshone National Forest and the Wind River Mountain Range. Lander is 180 miles from the front gate of Yellowstone National Park. The area has been home to people such as: Nate Marquart (UFC fighter), Clayton Danks (model of the Cowboy on the Wyoming state trademark) and Sacagawea (Lemhi Shoshone Tribe, assisted Lewis and Clark).


Pokes Football: Best of Wyoming series

* No. 25

* No. 24

* No. 23

No. 22

No. 21

No. 20

No. 19

* No. 18

* No. 17

No. 16 

No. 15

* No. 14

* No. 13

* No. 12


(Cody Tucker and Jared Newland both work for Townsquare Media, which owns Kevin McKinney has been a color commentator of Cowboy football for five decades. Ryan Thorburn now works for the University of Wyoming in a sports information role after spending decades in the newspaper industry, most recently at the Casper Star-Tribune. Sally Ann Shurmur, the daughter of former UW football coach Fritz Shurmur, is also a veteran of the newspaper industry, working as a journalist, columnist at the CST for 43 years. She currently writes for Cowboy State Daily.)

University of Wyoming’s Top 50 Football Players

During the summer of 2021, 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:

- University of Wyoming’s Top 50 Football Players

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