Friday, November 21, 2008

It's payback time for Cowboys

Richard Anderson photo
Wyoming running back Devin Moore needs just 20 yards on Saturday to become the all-time leading rusher for the Cowboys.

By Richard Anderson

It’s déjà vu all over again in reverse for the Wyoming Cowboys.

The Cowboys want to play the spoiler and keep Colorado State from being bowl eligible when the two teams meet for the 100th time Saturday, beginning at noon at War Memorial Stadium.

Wyoming (1-6 in MWV, 4-7 overall) saw its bowl eligibility hopes dashed last week in the 22-14 loss to UNLV. CSU (3-4, 5-6) can get to that plateau with a win over Wyoming.

Last year, the Rams knocked off the Cowboys as they were looking for their sixth victory in what turned out to be head coach Sonny Lubick’s final game with the program.

Will this be Joe Glenn’s swan song on Saturday? It has been reported in various media outlets this week that Glenn met with athletics director Tom Burman for a 14-minute meeting and Burman and UW president Tom Buchannan will meet possibly Saturday night to decide Glenn’s fate.

If Saturday is Glenn’s last game at Wyoming, he said he has no regrets in his six years at the helm.

“It’s been a great six years. There have been some great wins, some great people," Glenn said. “Just high times for me in my life to play in a Division I bowl game, to play at places like Tennessee, Florida, Texas A&M, Ole Miss, Virginia. It has been really sensational. I would have to place the people and the players I have worked with and that I know around the state as probably the highlight of my past six years.”

Glenn, however, admitted this season has been a different one for him. The Cowboys were expected to challenge for a bowl game this season, but five straight losses in the middle of the campaign have -- five lopsided defeats -- have put a damper on the enthusiasm.

Wyoming did win two straight games over San Diego State and Tennessee before falling to UNLV.

“It’s been a different feel," Glenn said. “A lot of the stuff throughout the year has a different feel to it than maybe with other circumstances.”

For now, Glenn is looking at the future and the future is Saturday against the Rams. Last year’s game in Fort Collins came a day after Thanksgiving and while it is a week earlier this season, the game is once again the finale for both programs.

As far as Glenn is concerned, that is the way it should be.

“We just moved this game last year to the end of the season,” Glenn said. “You can anticipate that this is the biggest game of the year, regardless if we are going to a bowl game or not matter what. You throw out all of that other stuff. You put it at the end and there is a crescendo for schools; there is something to play for at the end of the season. I’m way fired up about it.”

While the Rams (3-4) have a good running game with Gartrell Johnson (228 rushes, 1,056 yards) it’s the passing game that the Cowboys have to be at their best.

“They have two good guys, Dion Morton (42 catches, 676 yards) and Rashaun Greer (58, 995) who are really having big seasons for them,” Glenn said. “We’ve got to hold out there. We were in pretty good shape all of the year last year until they threw a couple over our head. There is a lot of concern in my mind and when I talked to the defensive coaches that we have to be able to hold up in the pass.”

Quarterback Billy Farris has completed 201 of 325 passes for 2,442 yards, 11 touchdowns and 14 interceptions.

“It’s the Border War and it is the biggest game of the year,” Glenn said. “On our goal sheet, it is the first goal that we set every year in capital letters … BEAT CSU.”

Wyoming freshman quarterback Chris Stutzriem looks to bounce back after a sub-par game at UNLV when he threw for two interceptions. Stutzriem had no interceptions in wins over San Diego State and Tennessee.

Glenn said that Stutzriem will again start at quarterback against CSU.

“He feels horrible about what happens, but he absolutely turned down his first read on a couple of plays in critical times in the fourth quarter,” Glenn said. “Both of the guys were wide open and he threw the ball to the wrong people, which resulted in an interception, and that is not him. He is better than that, he is smarter than that and we don’t anticipate him doing that again. Karsten (Sween) will be ready to go. But we have to eliminate stuff like that that is just devastating. It can’t happen.”

The Cowboys look to answer on the grounds with seniors Devin Moore (231, 1,225) and Wynel Seldon (126, 530). Moore needs just 20 yards to become the program’s all-time leader rusher and Seldon needs 41 yards for third place all time.

Glenn said for the Cowboys to be successful on Saturday, they just have to play their own game and not to put any pressure on themselves individually.

“I talked about it a pretty good length after the game to the team, everybody doing your own job and don’t be making things up,” he said. “They need to know like you are taught and play within yourself and play within the system, good things will happen. If you make up stuff, good things won’t happen.”

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