Will ‘Big Horn’ Pelissier impresses in UW spring game
LARAMIE -- Facing a 3rd-and-1 from their own 27-yard line, Gold team quarterback Levi Williams reeled in the shotgun snap, took two steps back and lofted a long ball down the west sideline.
First off, when is the last time the Cowboys threw a pass on third-and-short?
Secondly, who in the world is No. 83?
The first question, would take days of research. The second, Will Pelissier. That took a quick scramble up and down the roster to figure out.
The 6-foot-3, 200-pound wide receiver from Big Horn -- which is also his nickname, according to Wyoming head coach Craig Bohl -- went up for the catch and almost glided. He twisted and contorted, reaching over the trailing defender to snag the underthrown ball.
Most impressive, he got a foot down in bounds. The play went for 24 yards.
Six plays later, the preferred walk-on was lying in the end zone after hauling in a Williams' pass from 34 yards out. That impressive throw and catch came on a 4th-and-5. Pelissier got behind the corner and caught the pass in front of safety Isaac White before carrying him passed the goal line.
So, who in the world is this guy?
He snagged four passes for 70 yards during the Cowboys' annual spring game last Saturday in Laramie. Those were both game highs. That second-quarter score gave the Gold team its lone lead of the day.
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"I ran into my boss (UW Athletics Director Tom Burman) at halftime and he goes, 'is he that good a player?' I said 'yes.' He said the whole Wildcatter (suites) jumped up and down," Bohl said about Pelissier during his postgame press conference. "You know, he's been an emerging guy. He's got good speed, positions his body well, and he caused some problems for us on the scout team last year."
He did it all.
The senior rushed for 1,502 yards out of the Rams' backfield. He found the end zone an eye-popping 25 times that season. Pelissier averaged 198 all-purpose yards per outing. As a wide out, he hauled in seven touchdowns. In that 48-7 victory over Southeast -- which coincidentally took place inside War Memorial Stadium -- Pelissier finished with 214 yards receiving.
Did I mention that was the Rams' second straight title?
Pelissier was named an All-State player for three consecutive seasons. He was also a sprinter on the Big Horn indoor track team.
Could Pelissier be a legit factor this season? His quarterback is sure impressed with him.
"Will is an awesome guy," Williams said. "He's a young guy who hasn't got a lot of game experience yet, but I'm excited."
His coach agreed.
"It's been good to see him go out there and mix it up and play," Bohl said. "You know, there's a case of here's a non-scholarship player from the State of Wyoming who is coming in and contributing."
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