Sunday, October 11, 2009

Cowboys happy, but not satisfied

UW photos
Wyoming quarterback Austyn Carta-Samuels congratulates running back Alvester Alexander after Alexander's 33-yard touchdown run in the first quarter against New Mexico. At left, the UW defense swarms over a New Mexico running back.

By Richard Anderson

Is it too early to talk about a bowl game for the Wyoming Cowboys?

Yes … kind of.

The Cowboys don’t want to get caught up in the bowl talk with a tough schedule ahead, but when pressed, they admit it is their goal and each win puts them closer to that goal.

Opening the season at 4-2 will do that to a team.

“I know there is a locker room that is excited to be 4-2 right now,” Wyoming head coach Dave Christensen said after Saturday’s 37-13 win over New Mexico. “They have probably exceeded a few of your (media) expectations at this time. The kids are playing hard, they have bought in and they continue to come out and play every single game from start to finish. We know the schedule is going to get harder and harder, we have a very difficult game next week against a very good Air Force opponent.”

Have the Cowboys exceeded Christensen’s expectations? Not even close.

“They haven’t met mine, yet,” Christensen said. “We plan on winning every single time we play. I said that the beginning and that is the way it is going to be in this program.”

Wyoming freshman Austyn Carta-Samuels said that 4-2 is a good start, but it is just that – a start.

“We’re going to take it one at a time definitely because we have a tough schedule and that starts with Air Force next week,” Carta-Samuels said. “That’s all we are going to think about. We’re going to take it in stride and hopefully we can keep stacking wins, keep stacking wins. A bowl will be talked about eventually, but we’re not going to talk about that yet or we will lose sight of our goals.”

Cowboy senior linebacker said they aren’t satisfied with being 4-2. They want to be 5-2 after next Saturday’s game with the Falcons. That is their next goal.

“All of the coaches have high expectations for us,” Johnson said, “and I think we are just starting to scratch the surface of what we can do. We have to take it one game at a time and we have a good Air Force team next week.”

Wyoming senior defensive end Mitch Unrein said they are playing with much more confidence and that started with the coaching staff.

“We’re not worrying about if a mistake is going to happen,” Unrein said. “We know good things are going to happen. That is one of the things you can tell in our locker room and in our practices, the meeting room. The team has a whole new look at the program.”

Christensen said that they talk to the team about putting streaks together, winning back-to-back-to-back games. He said that is what you have to do to have success and do the things that you want to do.

“You can’t win a game, lose a couple, win a game, lose a couple. You have to put together back-to-back-to back game to start some streaks. So, it is huge," Christensen said. “The thing is we are changing the landscape and they are learning to do things and what it takes, how to think like a champion. They are doing a great job, but they have along ways to go, believe me. We have no arrived, but we are playing hard, learning how to finish, learning how to compete. Right now, I am happy with where we are at.”

Happy, but not satisfied.

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