Pokes peeved about predictions? Not quite
LAS VEGAS, Nev., -- Wyoming was picked to finish second in the Mountain Division last season.
You saw how that worked out.
The votes were tallied this week at Mountain West Media Days in Las Vegas, and let's just say, the Cowboys are not a popular bet. Craig Bohl's squad was picked fifth in the Mountain Division, one slot below Colorado State and a rung above lowly New Mexico.
What do the players themselves think?
"I love it, to be honest," UW linebacker Easton Gibbs said Thursday inside a ballroom at Mandalay Bay. "It just adds to it, you know? It just adds to the drive. I think for our team, we're young and we know not a lot of people believe in us. I think we're better off for it because it makes you go out and play harder.
"I think being picked fifth, I wouldn't want to be any place else. Maybe sixth. Pick us last."
Running back Titus Swen doesn't put much weight into preseason voting -- to say the least.
"I don't really think anything about that," the junior from Fort Worth said. "We can just let the cards lay where they lie. At the end of the day, we we're going to see."
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Gibbs, along with Swen, Frank Crum and Cole Godbout, were also listed on the All-Conference ballots.
None landed on the first or second teams.
"I mean, it doesn't really matter to me," said Swen, who rushed for 785 yards and scored seven touchdowns in 2021. "Stat for stat, I'm up against anyone."
Air Force's Brad Roberts and Fresno State's Jordan Mims earned the nod over Swen.
Gibbs tallied 89 tackles from the outside linebackers spot last fall. He added two sacks and four pass breakups. The Temecula, Calif., product will make the move to the middle this season, taking over the Chad Muma, who was selected in the third round of last spring's NFL Draft.
Gibbs was also passed over for Vince Sanford (Air Force), Caden McDonald (San Diego State) and Kyle Harmon (San Jose State).
Does it bother Gibbs?
"That's even better for me," the sophomore said. "I don't care really about what any of that stuff says, it just adds a chip to the shoulder. You know, most of the guys on our team were under-recruited like I was. I know plenty of guys are seeing that and it just adds to it. Adds to the drive."
2022 MOUNTAIN WEST FOOTBALL PRESEASON ALL-CONFERENCE TEAM
QB Jake Haener** Sr. Fresno State
WR Jalen Cropper** Sr. Fresno State
WR Jesse Matthews Sr. San Diego State
RB Jordan Mims Sr. Fresno State
OL Isaac Cochran Sr. Air Force
OL John Ojukwu* Sr. Boise State
OL Dontae Bull Sr. Fresno State
OL Aaron Frost** Sr. Nevada
OL Alama Uluave Sr. San Diego State
TE Tanner Arkin RS-Fr. Colorado State
DL Scott Matlock Sr. Boise State
DL Keshawn Banks** Sr. San Diego State
DL Jonah Tavai Sr. San Diego State
DL Viliami Fehoko* Sr. San José State
DL Cade Hall Sr. San José State
LB Vince Sanford** Sr. Air Force
LB Caden McDonald* Sr. San Diego State
LB Kyle Harmon* Sr. San José State
DB JL Skinner** Sr. Boise State
DB Evan Williams* Sr. Fresno State
DB Jerrick Reed II Sr. New Mexico
DB Patrick McMorris* Sr. San Diego State
P Aaron Rodriguez Jr. New Mexico
PK Jonah Dalmas* Jr. Boise State
PR Jordan Byrd Sr. San Diego State
KR Jordan Byrd* Sr. San Diego State
Offensive Player of the Year: Jake Haener, Sr., QB, Fresno State
Co-Defensive Player of the Year: Patrick McMorris, Sr., DB, San Diego State and Cade Hall, Sr., DL, San José State
Special Teams Player of the Year: Jordan Byrd, Sr., PR/KR, San Diego State
* - member of the 2021 All-Mountain West first team
** - member of the 2021 All-Mountain West second team
* Mountain West Conference press release
Just The Facts: Size Doesn't Matter For Wyoming's War Memorial Stadium
- Just The Facts: Size Doesn't Matter For Wyoming's War Memorial Stadium