Which Wyoming Cowboy wore it best? No. 85
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. 85 – Ryan McGuffey
Wide receiver, 2000-03, Riverton, Wyoming
Résumé in Laramie
Ryan McGuffey led the Cowboys in receptions in three separate seasons, racking up more than 2,650 yards in the process. He was named first-team all-conference in 2001, and is still in the Top 10 in school history in most statistical categories. McGuffey is one of the best receivers to come from the Cowboy State and play at UW. He was also a team captain in 2001 and 2002.
There were certainly more talented receivers in Wyoming history.
Marcus Harris. Ryan Yarborough. Jovon Bouknight.
But rarely did anyone work as hard as Riverton native, Ryan McGuffey.
After winning a pair of state titles, McGuffey came to Laramie a bit of an unknown. It didn't take long for him to get up to speed, snagging 63 passes for 696 yards and four touchdowns as a freshman.
McGuffey and Wheatland quarterback Casey Bramlet had an instant connection. The wins weren't piling up, but the yards were. McGuffey caught 168 more passes over his final three seasons. He racked up 1,983 total yards and nine more scores.
McGuffey's name is still littered throughout the Top-10 lists in school history: Career yards (2,679 - 6th), receptions (231 - 4th) and touchdowns (13 - 10th).
"I think I’m falling rapidly on those (all-time) lists,” McGuffey told the Casper Star Tribune back in 2015, “but it is nice (to still be up there) and I was just so proud to play for the University of Wyoming and play for my home state.”
McGuffey earned first-team All-Mountain West honors in 2001. He was an honorable mention in 2000 and 2003.
During that 2001 campaign, McGuffey had his best outing against visiting UNLV. The sophomore caught 15 passes for 144 yards. That is still the fourth-best single-season game by a Cowboy receiver. McGuffey made the Top-10 list again with a 13-catch performance against Kansas in 2003. That day he finished with 135 receiving yards.
McGuffey signed with the St. Louis Rams as a free agent out of college. He didn't make the roster, instead leaving football all together and becoming an attorney, which he still is today.
Clarence "Bugs" Carter (1953-55) earned back-to-back All-Skyline Conference honors as a junior and senior. Carter was one of the Cowboys leading receivers under head coach Phil Dickens, catching passes from quarterback Joe Mastrogiavanni.
Carter's teams were undefeated against rival BYU and beat Colorado State in two of the Border War rivals' three meetings.
In 1955, Wyoming finished the season 8-3 and, for only the second time in program history, played in a bowl game.
The Cowboys knocked off Texas Tech 21-14 in front of 14,500 fans inside Kidd Field, which would later be renamed the Sun Bowl.
That team will forever be enshrined in the UW athletics Hall of Fame.
Who else wore No. 85
Harlan Schreiner (end), Jim Walsh (TE), Brian Tipton (DE), Scott Joseph (SE), Ryan Vowers (TE), Jeremy Gilstrap (TE), Jason Ringenberg (TE), David Gough (LS), John Hutchison (TE), Prince Ledbetter (WR), Jesson Salyards (TE), Mark Willis (DT), Jarrod Darden (WR), Tyree Mayfield (TE), Mason Gallegos (WR),
*** All available rosters and photos courtesy of the University of Wyoming. If we missed one, please email Cody@7220sports.com. ***