Wyoming’s Un-Sweet 16: No. 1 Reid Family vs. No. 4 Frank Arnold
LARAMIE -- There's a few things that can land you on a list like this one.
Beating Wyoming with regularity certainly makes you a thorn in the side. Making stupid decisions will also draw the ire of fans. Being an all-round jerk will do it, too.
This is our version of the Un-Sweet 16, pitting the biggest villains in Wyoming Cowboys basketball history against one another and eventually crowning the worst of the worst. This won't be our opinion, it's yours. You can vote for who will advance to the next round by clicking on the box at the bottom of this page.
We did our best to round up the ultimate enemy of the Cowboy State. We reached out to people in the know, from different decades of UW hoops. Don't be surprised to see plenty of rivals on this list.
Here's today's matchup:
No. 1 Reid Family vs. No. 4 Frank Arnold
"There is something inherently annoying about these virtuous, square-jawed sibs with the Bart Connor 'dos and Donny Osmond smiles."
If that doesn't describe the BYU backcourt duo of Robbie and Randy Reid, I don't know what does.
You can find that sentence above in a 1995 Sports Illustrated article titled "Stormin' Mormons."
"Of course, you can't blame opponents for being irked by the Reids," the article continues.
Count Cowboys fans as irked and annoyed by the brothers, who played together in Provo during the 1993-95 season. To make matters more vexing, their father, Roger Reid, was the Cougars head coach.
Randy Reid, a 6-foot-2 guard, began his career at BYU during the '92 campaign. Robbie showed up a year later.
During their two years together, the Cougars went 44-20 overall and made one trip to the NCAA Tournament in 1995 (Randy also helped lead BYU to the tourney in 1993). The Reids topped the Cowboys both times that winter, including a 58-52 victory inside the Arena-Auditorium. In fact, Randy finished his career 7-1 against Wyoming. Robbie, who transferred to Michigan after his sophomore season, topped the Pokes three times in four tries.
Roger, who coached at BYU from 1989-96, was 10-4 all-time against UW. He resigned seven games into the 1996 season. Interim coach Tony Ingle took both L's against the Cowboys that year.
Roger did have one memorable quote about the UW faithful. That came during the 1991 WAC tournament, played inside the Arena-Auditorium. The Cougars played Hawaii in the semifinals before meeting rival Utah in the title game. The home crowd was a fan of anyone who played BYU.
“I look at it this way. We’re the underdogs," he told the Deseret News. "Saddam Hussein could have been playing tonight, and they’d have cheered him.”
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One word landed Frank Arnold on this list -- Despicable.
That's what BYU's head coach called the Wyoming fanbase in 1981 after the Cowboys knocked off the No. 15 Cougars 86-84 in double overtime inside the War Memorial Stadium Fieldhouse.
Here is an excerpt from a Deseret News article titled "Harassment reaches high, fans stoop low."
"The biggest perpetrators - at least as far as BYU is concerned - are the Wyoming fans. In the old Wyoming basketball arena, the court was mounted on a dirt rodeo floor, lending an air of recklessness to the proceedings. Fans chanted anti-BYU obscenities en masse whenever the Cougars came to town.
Of course, nobody had more talent at attracting abuse than former BYU coach Frank Arnold. Arnold would call time out and glare into the crowd, attempting to point out to security officials which fan was throwing things at him. The moment he'd turn back, the abuse rose to the next level. Fans would hold pennies with tweezers, heating them up until they were red hot and then flip them at the BYU bench. Players were also pelted with rotten fruit, game programs and other materials.
Arnold became so disgusted with the behavior of Wyoming's fans, he termed the crowd "despicable." For years after Arnold left BYU, the Wyoming crowd would gleefully chant "We're despicable!" whenever BYU came to town."
Was Arnold loathed? You bet.
The Ogden, Utah native coached in Provo from 1975-83, winning 137 games. He led the Cougars to the NCAA Tournament three times, including during that '81 season when Danny Ainge sank a last-second shot to knock off Notre Dame to advance to the Elite Eight.
In 16 meetings with the Cowboys, Arnold featured a 10-6 record. Arnold's contract was not renewed after BYU finished just a game over .500 during the 1982-83 season. He eventually took the head coaching job at Hawaii in '85. In two seasons on the islands, Arnold racked up an 11-45 record.
Wyoming beat the Rainbow Warriors in all four meetings.
WYOMING'S UN-SWEET 16 SERIES:
Monday: No. 1 Reid Family vs. No. 16 Paco Larsen (Reid Family moves on with 95.5% of the vote)
Tuesday: No. 2 Danny Ainge vs. No. 15 Antonio Davis (Ainge moves on with 93.4% of the vote)
Wednesday: No. 3 Rick Majerus vs. No. 14 David Turcotte (Majerus moves on with 92% of the vote)
Thursday: No. 4 Frank Arnold vs. No. 13 Lee Cummard (Arnold moves on with 74.8% of the vote)
Friday: No. 5 Larry Eustachy vs. No. 12 Joe Scott (Eustachy moves on with 58.1% of the vote)
Monday: No. 6 Michael Smith vs. No. 11 Norm Ellenberger (Smith moves on with 61.4% of the vote)
Tuesday: No. 7 Rafael Araujo vs. No. 10 Petie Gibson (Araujo moves on with 94.8% of the vote)
Wednesday: No. 8 Key Injuries vs. No. 9 MW Officials (Key Injuries moves on with 72% of the vote)
Thursday: No. 1 Reid Family vs. No. 8 Key Injuries (Reid Family moves on with 57.4% of the vote)
Friday: No. 2 Danny Ainge vs. No. 7 Rafael Araujo (Ainge moves on with 80.1% of the vote)
Monday: No. 3 Rick Majerus vs. No. 6 Michael Smith (Majerus moves on with 80% of the vote)
Tuesday: No. 4 Frank Arnold vs. No. 5 Larry Eustachy (Arnold moves on with 56.9% of the vote)
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