Another Border War classic is in the books and for the third straight year the Bronze Boot is staying in Laramie. All the freshmen for the Cowboys learned that is an intense rivalry and anything can happen. The game time temperature was chilly but tempers were running hot. This game featured 17 total penalties including a large number of personal fouls as both sides kept the intensity up after plays were done.
With four lead switches either team had a shot at winning this one. The Rams put together a very strong third quarter to take a 19-14 lead. The Pokes kept things together and used an incredible fourth quarter effort to seal the victory. Brett Smith found Josh Doctson in the corner of the end zone for a 35 yard touchdown and gave the Pokes a one point lead. The Cowboys went for the two point conversion but failed. Later Brett Smith was picked off at the Ram five yard line the defense picked things up. Mike Purcell sacked Garrett Grayson in the end zone for a safety and now the Pokes led 22-19. Wyoming failed to run out the clock and punted with one minute remaining.
After picking up a first down Grayson went for a deep pass into heavy pass coverage. The ball bounced off the Ram receiver's helmet as he fell to the ground. The ball jumped up and fell into the arms of Blair Burns who ran for a few yards and then wisely took a knee. All that was left was a final kneel down and the game was done.
With three turnovers for each team this game could have been a lopsided victory. Despite the Rams having an awful season they certainly showed up for this one. But their execution was lacking at times and it cost them big time. At the end of the first half they scored a touchdown but it was called back due a false start penalty. Then Grayson was picked in the end zone. In the third quarter they had a chance to extend their lead but missed a field goal when it hit the crossbar.
Afterwards Coach Fairchild was fired on Sunday after completing his third straight 3-9 season. It will be interesting to see who the Rams hire to try and turn around the program. Whoever gets the job will have a tough time getting the Bronze Boot back in Fort Collins.
NOTE: This recap was delayed since I attended the game and spent time visiting with family afterwards. Later this week I'll post my thoughts from the game day experience and share the photos I took.