Wyoming Football: News and Notes Ahead of CSU
LARAMIE -- Craig Bohl said he failed to convey to his team what they were walking into Saturday afternoon.
Yes, Boise State was a game under .500. Yes, its defense has been leaky, especially on the backend. Yes, that team appeared to be beatable.
Colorado State, the Cowboys' next opponent, scored 21 unanswered points with 4:02 remaining in regulation in the Broncos' last outing. The Rams, with the aid of a Hail Mary, pulled off a 31-30 stunner in Fort Collins.
We all know better.
Boise State has been the bully of the Mountain West essentially since it arrived in the Mountain West back in 2011. On its famous blue turf, the Broncos simply don't lose. That overall record now sits at 63-14 since joining the conference.
Only nine of those setbacks have come against league schools, none of which are Wyoming.
"I think what I failed to do was really express to our team the type of opponent that we were going to be playing," Wyoming's head coach said Monday at his weekly press conference in Laramie. "I think our players might have looked and said, 'OK, you know what, they've got a losing record. They're not like Boise. You know, this is our chance. We're going to whip up on them.'
"I knew enough that they were going to come in and be like a caged animal and play really relentless, hard and aggressive. I failed to get that across."
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The Cowboys are now 1-17 all-time against Boise State -- 0-9 on the road -- after that 32-7 loss inside Albertsons Stadium. Wyoming rolled up a grand total of 112 yards in the process, including just 27 on the ground.
Bohl's 'Boys never crossed midfield on offense and converted just one third-down attempt on 11 tries.
He said the team didn't play with the "chip on the shoulder" that led to earlier wins over Texas Tech and Fresno State. Bohl added he gave his roster more time off during the bye week than he typically does. Did that play a part in what unfolded against the Broncos? "I commiserated about that a great," he said, adding he was pleased with practices.
"I failed to get our football team ready," he said. "So, we can't do anything about that. We have to move on."
Here are some other tidbits from Bohl's press conference:
* Bohl was eager to move on from the Boise State debacle. He said he called his team into the meeting room Sunday, expressed his concerns and spoke about his disappointment. He even had a prop with him. "I brought out the (Bronze) Boot," he said. "I talked to our team about, you know, the importance of this trophy and the importance of the rivalry and we flipped the page and we moved on."
* While Bohl and the players have supposedly moved on, it's hard to ignore what transpired last Saturday in Boise, particularly on the offensive side of the ball. Andrew Peasley completed just 10-of-20 throws for 85 yards to go along with a touchdown and an interception. The Cowboys' senior signal caller was also sacked twice and hit four more times. Was it simply a case of wide receivers not getting any separation? "He never was comfortable, where you've seen him be comfortable before," Bohl said of Peasley. "Some things got sped up and he held the ball a little bit too long. There was some breakdown in protections. They zero blitzed, which they had not shown. He got hit a lot. You know, he's a warrior, but he's got to get in sync and our receivers need to, as you say, they need to separate. We had some separation, but the windows were not nearly as profound as what they were against Air Force. They did a good job game planning us."
* Harrison Waylee made his return to the field Saturday in Boise after suffering a lower-body injury Oct. 7 in a win over Fresno State. It didn't go as planned. The junior rushed for just 18 yards on 10 carries. That's an average of 1.8 yards per tote. As a team, the Cowboys finished with just 27 yards on the ground. "It's embarrassing," Bohl said bluntly. "Our offensive line was, you know, unhappy about it, I was unhappy about it and coach (Tim) Polasek was unhappy about it. We have to be able to run the ball better."
* Did this Wyoming team really get ahead of itself and ditch the "1-0 mentality?" Bohl thinks that could've been an issue. "One, if you look out too far out there in front of you and you take your eye off the opponent and you start thinking about, 'OK, we're in position if we do this and this bowl game and conference championship' -- that only comes about by beating Boise State," he said. "Well, we didn't do it. We can't do anything about that now. We damn sure have to do something about Colorado State."
* Does Bohl still believe in this team? "Wes, I have great belief," he said. "They're a great group. We didn't play well and I didn't coach well."
* Wyoming and CSU will meet for the 115th time in history this Friday night. Bohl was asked how he will manage emotions in a rivalry game like this? "You know, that comes down to constant communication with them, a belief and a trust," he said, adding that you're dealing with 18 to 22-year old's. "That needs to be reciprocated. You know, like I said, we addressed our shortcomings in the Boise game and I was really explicit with the men in this room yesterday on what I saw. Then, we booked it, and we said, OK, now turn the page because Colorado State doesn't care that we got our butts kicked. I told our team, I said, 'we just got taken to the woodshed by a team that beat them. So we better get our stingers up and quit feeling sorry for ourselves and believe in what the coaches are doing.'
* Wyoming escaped Boise relatively healthy, according to Bohl. He said everyone should be available for Friday night. Late in regulation, Cole Godbout, Jordan Bertganole and Wyett Ekeler appeared to suffer injuries. Bohl said postgame he was never told any player couldn't come back in the game if need be.
* Bohl said he was happy with Sunday's practice. Defensive coordinator Jay Sawvel said it went so well it actually surprised him. "I did not see remnants of, you know, a hangover," Bohl added. "But I need to caution this, I did not see a train wreck coming. I saw what I thought was going to be a really, really good opponent, I did not see us perform the way we did. We've made too many steps. We looked somewhat like we used to look and that's got to get done. We need to start fast, we need to finish strong, we need to tackle -- all the things that you know, we were deficient. That's got to change. It's got to change in a hurry."
* A number of players on Wyoming's roster have never played in a Border War. Bohl said he tried to convey Sunday what this one means. "I talked about the gravity of the moment, the exhilarating feeling when you grab the boot, and the pain and regret when you see the other team grab the boot," he said. "I mean, it's profound." Bohl is 6-3 all-time against the Rams.
* Wyoming trails the all-time series with the Rams 59-50-5, but has won 10-of-14 against CSU, including two straight.
* Kickoff is scheduled for 6 p.m. Friday night and the game will be televised on CBS Sports Network.
PRESS PASS: Roaming The War
Gallery Credit: DJ Johnson/ 7220sports.com
-PRESS PASS: Roaming The War