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. 65 – Joe DiGiorgio

Center, 1979-82, Levitown, Penn.

Résumé in Laramie
Joe DiGiorgio was a team captain for the Cowboys as a senior in 1982. The Wyoming center was an All-Western Athletic Conference selection in 1981 and '82.

Why DiGiorgio?
Here is another one of those players who endured a lot during his time in Laramie.

Joe DiGiorgio was recruited by Bill Lewis in 1979, played for Pat Dye in 1980 and capped his career under the leadership of Al Kincaid in 1981-82. That equated to a whole lot of mediocrity inside War Memorial Stadium as coaches came and went.

That is except for one season -- 1981.

The Cowboys were coming off a 6-5 campaign in Dye's lone campaign in Laramie. Kincaid took the reins and turned a middle-of-the-road team into an eight-game winner.

Wyoming started the season 3-1 with its lone loss coming on the road at 3rd-ranked Oklahoma. After stumbling at Hawaii, the Cowboys won four in a row and five of six to close out the regular season. During that win streak, DiGiorgio and the Pokes hosted No. 13 BYU in Laramie.

Jim McMahon and the Cougars jumped out to an early 14-0 lead that Saturday afternoon in what looked like a real-life snow globe. Wyoming, behind the running efforts of quarterback Phil Davis, outscored LaVell Edwards' bunch, 33-6 the rest of the way.

DiGiorgio and the rest of his linemates put the Cougars on skates all afternoon long. While BYU couldn't quite get its footing, Wyoming gashed, smashed and ran past one of the top defenses in the nation led by linebacker, Kyle Whittingham.

McMahon threw the ball 47 times that day, completing 29 passes for 393 yards. One of those tosses ended up in the arms of Wyoming's Reggie Fowler.

Wyoming kept the ball on the ground the majority of the game, Davis attempted just 11 passes. One of those, however, was an 81-yard scoring strike to James Williams early in the fourth to give the Cowboys a two-score lead.

Davis finished the afternoon with 16 carries for 151 yards and three touchdowns.

Kincaid was known for the running game. In DiGiorgio's senior season, the Cowboys rushed the ball a school-record 731 times. That averaged out to 60 attempts per outing. Signal caller Craig Johnson benefited from that. So did tailback Walter Goffigan. Both combined to rush for 941 yards.

On April 20, 1995, DiGiorgio died of Hodgkin's lymphoma.



Who else wore No. 65
Leo McClellan
(G), Tom Honig (G), Tony Williams (DE), Dan Cudworth (OT), Travis Studie (DT), Kyle Stumpf (OG), David Benedict (C), Matt Marshall (OG), Brandon Avery (OT), Mike Robinson (NG), Kyle Magnuson (OL), Jessee Wilson (C-OG), Boyd Draeger (OG), Zach Watts (OL-Pictured)

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