Well the Wyoming Cowboys (3-9) sure know how to finish the season with a bang. The Pokes dominated their rival Colorado State Rams (3-9) on both sides of the field in the 102nd edition of the Border War. The victory means that Wyoming keeps the Bronze boot for a second straight year and now lead the Bronze Boot series 22-21.
This was the largest margin of victory in the history of the Border War and first shutout by the Wyoming defense this year. The man who accounted for most of the damage was RB Alvester Alexander who had 147 yards rushing and a school record five touchdowns. He also tied a Mountain West Conference record for rushing scores. Alexander was impressive the entire game and his second effort on runs resulted in two of the touchdowns.
As great as Wyoming played the Rams just simply didn't show up today. More stats and analysis after the jump.
The Wyoming offense out gained their opponents 479-156 and the Pokes had NO turnovers the entire game. CSU fumbled once in the red zone and Pete Thoma was intercepted once. The fumble occurred right before the half ended and LB Brian Hendricks recovered and would have returned it for a touchdown. The refs called the play dead and said the player was down. After a review it was determined a fumble but Hendricks never got the touchdown he deserved.
Austyn Carta-Samuels was a truly leader on the field today. He was 23 of 36 for 266 yards as well as 46 yards on the ground and a score. ACS looked calm under pressure and was able to convert on short and long passes all game long. His favorite target was Mazi Ogbonna who had five catches for 65 yards. Other performances were TJ Smith with 3 catches for 58, David Leonard 6 catches for 49 yards and Zach Bolger 3 catches for 47 yards.
A big reason for the great performance was the blocking by the Cowboys. Obviously the offensive line did a great job of opening up running lanes but the a shoutout also goes to the receiving corp who blocked at the line of scrimmage and downfield on screen passes. This had been a problem area for most of the season but not today.
Wyoming's defense put pressure on Pete Thomas all day long and totaled five sacks. The freshman QB has now been sacked 43 times to start his career. His 90 yards was just enough to set a new MWC record for passing yards by a freshman at 2,655. The Rams only had 13 first downs in the game and three of those came on penalties.
The Rams were forced to punt nine times and only had 66 yards rushing on the day. Chris Nwoke had 69 yards himself but the loss of yards due to sacks dropped the team total. This is the first shutout by Wyoming's defense since 2006 which also came in a Border War game. Wyoming won 26-0 in Laramie under coach Joe Glenn.
This season may not have turned out the way Wyoming fans expected but one for game this season it feels really damn good to be a Cowboy fan.
Cowboy Joe: Alvester Alexander earned this due to his record setting performance. Big props to the offensive line for opening up all those running lanes.
Cowboy Low: Can't give this one out. When you shutout your rival 44-0 there can't be many bad performances.
Cowboy Foe: Ricky Brewer ran his mouth about grabbing the Bronze Boot after the Rams won the game. Uh, nice one there Ricky. Thanks for the motivation and glad your last game as a Sheep was an embarrassment.