Wyoming Football Kicks Off Fall Practice Wednesday
* University of Wyoming press release
LARAMIE -- The 2023 Wyoming Cowboys will take to the practice field for the first time on Wednesday, Aug. 2 to begin preparations for the 2023 college football season. Wednesday’s first practice will begin a one-month countdown to the season opener versus Texas Tech on Saturday, Sept. 2 in War Memorial Stadium.
Wyoming will conduct 20 fall camp practices prior to game week vs. the Red Raiders of Texas Tech.
UW will rotate their practices between War Memorial Stadium, the North 40 practice fields and the practice field south of War Memorial Fieldhouse. Practices are closed to media and the general public.
A year ago, the Wyoming Cowboys entered the 2022 college football season as one of the youngest teams in the country. But given that, the Cowboys went on to record a 7-6 record, finish second in the Mountain West Conference Mountain Division and earn a spot in the Barstool Sports Arizona Bowl. Along the way the ‘22 Pokes defeated rivals Air Force, Colorado State, Hawai’i, Utah State and American Athletic Conference member Tulsa.
Plenty of Talented Experience Returns in 2023
As Wyoming approaches the 2023 season, the outlook is much different than it was a year ago. A total of 17 of 24 starters return this season, with 10 of 11 starters returning on defense, a group of five starters on offense plus its starting place-kicker and starting punter.
Those 17 returning starters are among 48 returning letterwinners -- 22 on offense, 22 on defense and four on special teams.
The Pokes will not be shy of leadership either. While team captains for the 2023 season will not be voted on until fall camp, all four team captains return from last year in linebacker Easton Gibbs and nose tackle Cole Godbout on defense and quarterback Andrew Peasley and tight end Treyton Welch on offense.
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Nine returning Cowboys earned some type of All-Conference recognition last season. Gibbs, Peasley and Welch were among those returners honored. Defensive tackle Jordan Bertagnole, offensive tackle Frank Crum, defensive end DeVonne Harris, center Nofoafia Tulafono, place-kicker John Hoyland and punter Clayton Stewart also received All-Conference accolades in 2022.
A 10th Cowboy, Godbout, earned All-Conference recognition in 2021 and was well on his way to earning honors again last year before he was injured mid-season.
Five Cowboys were named to the 2023 Preseason All-Mountain West Team announced in July at Mountain West Media Days in Las Vegas. Those five were led by linebacker Gibbs, who was named the Mountain West’s Preseason Defensive Player of the Year. Defensive tackle Bertagnole and defensive end Harris were also named to the Preseason All-MW defense. Offensive tackle Crum was Wyoming’s one offensive player named to the preseason team and place-kicker Hoyland was named on special teams.
Hoyland returns as one of the nation’s most prolific kickers. He has been selected a 2023 Preseason Second Team All-American by Athlon Sports and was named a Preseason Third Team All-American by Phil Steele.
Overall Team Evaluation
With an experienced defense returning and an offense that will blend a group of key returnees with exciting newcomers, it is easy to be optimistic about the 2023 Wyoming Cowboys.
Head coach Craig Bohl not only likes the talent and depth coming back from last season, but he likes the mental make-up of his 2023 team.
“I like the attitude of this team. They’re a hard-working group and we do have good ability,” said Bohl. “I think our conference is a great conference. We certainly have a very competitive non-conference schedule this year, but I’m excited about coaching this team and we’ll see how far we go.”
Part of the chemistry that has developed in the Wyoming Football program during Bohl’s tenure has come about due to building a team with players who have a passion for being Wyoming Cowboys and adding transfers who fit the team identity that Bohl and his staff have fostered.
“What has occurred is we’ve been able to distill the players who really want to be here and appreciate that it’s a privilege for them to wear the Brown and Gold,” said Bohl. “They work hard. They play together. They’re the type of team that I got into coaching for. This has been a really good group. They want to learn. They want to play together and want to do things the Wyoming way.
“What we’ve done with the transfers is we’ve done our homework and got some really good character references from people we knew and trusted who had worked with these guys before. I think that has helped. We haven’t hit on 100 percent of them, but for the most part these guys have fit into our program. One of the reasons we had another winning season last year is we had good chemistry in the locker room, and that wasn’t by chance. Every year is a new year, but it (2022) was probably one of the most enjoyable years I’ve had as a head football coach because I thought the team chemistry was outstanding. We had a lot of guys who achieved close to their potential, which is one of the things you always look for in a program. It was a good year for us.”
Fall Practice Schedule and Post-Practice Interviews
Wyoming fall practices will be conducted in the mornings.
While practices are closed to media and the general public, post-practice media interviews will be conducted with head coach Craig Bohl and requested players and assistant coaches.
At the request of media members covering the Cowboys, interviews will be conducted three times per week after Monday, Wednesday and Friday practices. Interviews will be conducted in person in the High Altitude Performance Center (HAPC) Team Room.
Beginning on Monday, Aug. 28, Coach Bohl’s regular weekly press conferences will be held in the HAPC Team Room at Noon each Monday. Immediately following Coach Bohl’s Monday press conferences, requested players and assistant coaches will be made available from 12:20 to 2:15 p.m.
Tickets to the 2023 Season
Fans interested in purchasing tickets to the 2023 Wyoming Football season may: go online at www.GoWyo.com/tickets; email firstname.lastname@example.org; call the UW Athletics Ticket Office at (307) 766-7220; or stop by the ticket office on the west side of UW’s Arena-Auditorium. Season tickets start as low as $170 and single-game tickets start as low as $20 for adults.