Freshmen Will Have Big Impact For Wyoming This Year

The last two recruiting classes for Wyoming have been strong ones and those players are looking to be making an early impact.  With the transition from Glenn's players to Christensen's there have been a number of freshmen that have played since they fit the new system better.  This year there are a number of freshmen that will play this year and it could reach double digits.

Christensen said it was just a guess on his part, but that he had taken a look and thought maybe 10 freshmen could play this season. Some of those will undoubtedly be receivers. "Basically if they make it to the two-deep, they're going to play. ... If they're on the two-deep when I release it for the first game, you can pretty much count on it."

That depth chart won't be released for a while longer but we can still narrow down the candidates.

Here is a breakdown of the list of freshmen that are most likely to play this year and their chance of playing.

CERTAIN TO PLAY - 100%

QB Brett Smith - If Smith doesn't start the season as the starting QB then he must have gotten injured.  That seems to be the only way he isn't the starter against Weber State.  He has certainly shown that he is the most ready player right now to lead the Pokes. 

LS Zach Ewan - One of the top two high school long snappers in the nation last year and will be a fixture here at Wyoming for the next four years.

OLB Mark Nzeocha - He will either start at the LEO position or stay co-starters with Korey Jones at that spot.   The German player will have fours of eligibility at Wyoming despite being 20. 

K Daniel Sullivan or Stuart Williams - Both are freshmen and have been banged up recently.  One will win the job and Williams a walkon has been the more consistent of the two.  This battle may continue during the season if one of them struggles. 

WR Sam Stratton - The converted quarterback had an impressive spring and has continued that progress this fall.  He won't be starting this year but will certainly see the field plenty of times. 

CB Darrenn White - The redshirt freshmen will backup Tashaun Gipson and will also see the field on dime and nickel coverage.

LIKELY TO PLAY - 75%

RB Kody Sutton - Sutton is listed at just 5'8 but he has certainly turned some heads so far this camp.  The Pokes have solid depth this year at running back so it will be interesting to see where he ends up on the depth chart.  He is contending for roles as a kick and punt returner.

WR Dominic Rufran - The Colorado product has improved in camp and has gone from working with the third team to getting reps with the #1 offense over the last week.  The main question is where he ends up on the depth chart which will determine how much time he'll see on the field.  Also a contender for kick return duty.

OL Daniel Fleischman - The redshirt freshmen was injured in the off season and had surgery during the spring.  It was expected that he would miss the entire year but he has progressed incredibly quickly in his rehab.  He is now taking reps with the second team linemen and may even be ready for the season opener.

WR Trey Norman -In high school he starred at quarterback but has found the transition to receiver an easy one since arriving in Laramie.  He led the team with five receptions for 33 yards in the most recent scrimmage.

 

CHANCE OF PLAYING - 50% Or Less

OL Travis Bogard - He is the backup to starting center Nick Carlson but may fill in elsewhere along the line if needed. 

WR Josh Doctson - Over the last two scrimmages the speedy Doctson has impressed the coaches and the media with his play.  Had three catches for 36 yards and a touchdown on Tuesday.  Depending on how others perform he could see the field this year.

DE Eddie Yarbrough - The case with Yarbrough is definitely a good problem to have.  He has been playing phenomenally  this fall and the coaches think he has All-American potential down the road.  Two senior starters at defensive end and plenty of depth means that the Pokes aren't forced to play him right away.  It will exciting to watch him play whenever he does see the field.

TE Kevin Robertson - With the injury to Spencer Bruce there is a void left at the backup TE spot now.  TJ Smith is still the starter but the 6-4 Robertson may see the field as well.  On Tuesday he pulled in three catches for 54 yards and a touchdown.   

CB Blair Burns - He has been learning a lot from veteran Tashaun Gipson  and could be on the field for nickel and dime coverage. 

QB Adam Pittser - Pittser is still battling with Colby Kirkegaard for the backup spot behind Smith.  You can never predict how the season will play out and it could be hard for Smith to take every single snap this year.  Injuries are never expected but they are always possible.  The staff may do everything possible to make sure that Pittser keeps his redshirt intact this year.

 

Having freshmen play can certainly be a double edged sword for any team.  First off it shows that you are recruiting impact players who can make a difference for your program.  However they are lacking in collegiate experience and every game will be a new opponent that they have never faced before.

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