CHEYENNE -- Do you ever see a number on a Wyoming football jersey and think of all the great players to wear it? Yeah, me too. In this daily series, I’ll give you my take on which Pokes’ football player was the best ever to don each number. The criteria are simple: How did he perform at UW? What kind of impact did he have on the program?

No. 47 – Tyler Gottschalk

Linebacker, 2000-03, Hays, Kan., 

Résumé in Laramie
Tyler Gottschalk was named an All-Mountain West Conference Honorable Mention in 2002 and 2003. The Kansas native is still ranked 10th all-time in career tackles in school history with 334.

Why Gottschalk?
BYU head coach Gary Crowton saw a mismatch before the Cougars traveled to Laramie in October of 2003.

Tight end Daniel Coats, who enjoyed a five-year NFL career and snagged 86 catches for 966 yards and nine touchdowns during his four years in Provo, was lined up against Wyoming tight end Tyler Gottschalk.

Boy, was he wrong.

Gottschalk stepped in front of a John Beck pass in the second quarter and returned it 60 yards for a touchdown, scoring the Cowboys only touchdown of the day. It was the senior’s first interception of his career.

And It was just enough to get the Cowboys in the win column.

Wyoming knocked off the Cougars 13-10, snapping a three-game
losing streak against BYU.

“This feels great,” Gottschalk told reporters following the game. “BYU does have one of the better offenses in the conference, but our defense came up big today … We knew there was going to be a turning point and today I think we finally crossed over and made that turn.”

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That was the fewest points the Cowboys allowed in a game
since giving up seven at Air Force in 1999.

"Wyoming played a good game, they had a lot of energy
and made some plays when they needed to make them," Crowton told the
media. "We came back, played hard and had a chance to tie or win the game
but had a tipped ball intercepted and that was the game."

Gottschalk and the Cowboys didn’t do a lot of winning during his first three seasons in Laramie under former head coach Vic Koenning.

Wyoming won just five games in that time. Only three of those were against Division-I programs. When Joe Glenn showed up in 2003, things started to turn for the Pokes.

So, when the Cowboys knocked off a three-win BYU squad that
season, the fans tore down the goal posts. Gottschalk saw that three different
times during his career in Laramie. The first time when the Cowboys upset the
22nd-ranked Air Force Falcons in 2002. The third time is when
Wyoming beat Colorado State two weeks after the BYU upset.

UW won four games in 2003.

Honorable mention
Joe Cummings (1992-95) earned All-Western Athletic Conference honors during his final season in Laramie. He registered eight sacks and 10 tackles for loss that season.

The Missoula, Mont., product helped lead the Cowboys to an
8-4 record in 1993 and a berth in the Cooper Bowl.

Cummings played three seasons in the NFL, two for the
Buffalo Bills and one for the San Diego Chargers. He had a lone sack in just
four starts. He also played in the XFL.

Cummings is now a fishing guide in Montana.

Who else wore No. 47
Roger Teat (K), John Fraser (FB), Ken Jones (DB), Steve McMillon (CB), Jay Wandler (LB), Jay Wojtkiewicz (LB/DE), Travis Cook (LB), Mike Neuhaus (LB), Greg Saydjari (DE), Brandon Lukenbill (CB), Matt List (FB), David Lee (S), Darth Tesinsky (FB), Louis Horton (Bandit), Drew Harvey (LB)

  • All available rosters and photos courtesy of the University of Wyoming. If we missed one, please email Cody@7220sports.com.