Panel Of Pokes: Air Force One

Chip Somodevilla - Getty Images

Talking about those Air Force Falcons with our crew.

Just two days away from homecoming and the Pokes hopefully getting a second straight win over Air Force.

Here are the latest standings for the Pick Em contest. Three way tie for first place. Seven folks finished with six correct picks last week. Every single person in the contest picked Air Force to beat Navy and we were all wrong.

1 MrTitleist FTW! 36 36-10
2 Rowdie Road 36 36-10
3 ForeverBlue 36 36-10
4 buckeyeman11 35 35-11
5 Wyoming Cowboys All Day 35 35-11

I believe we have a Panel of Pokes first this week with a punter being chosen the Poke Pick. Keep reading to find out more.

Share your thoughts and predictions in the comments below.

Ian @ GoWyoGo.com

Poke Pick: Brett Smith

Score Predition: Wyoming 31 Air Force 25

The Cowboys could easily be 4-1 right now versus 1-4, if Brett Smith stays in Toledo and Nevada games, and plays against Cal Poly. The margin between losing and winning can be thin. This is a critical game for the Pokes against the Falcons, because a win would put them in a decent position to make a second half run and get to bowl eligibility while a loss would damper those chances.

The Cowboys had positives against Nevada and showed they can hang on the road against one of the league's best teams. They did a better job against the run holding Nevada to 127 yards rushing but was hurt by big plays in the Wolf Pack passing game. Wyoming matches up well against Air Force and has for the most part done a good job in the past controlling the Falcon option run game.

The sense of urgency, a homecoming game and the combination of enough defense and offense will get Wyoming to victory on Saturday.

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Matt Blaylock - POKE PRIDE

Poke Pick: Tim Gleeson

Score: Pokes - 19 Fly Boys - 10

This game should be low scoring and hard hitting. Air force is not as good as they have been in years past and Wyoming is better than their 1-4 record shows. The Pokes defense finally stepped up against the run last week holding the nations leading rusher to under a 100 yards. Look for a repeat performance this week. The Cowboys play the Falcons every year so they are use to the option and will look to shut it down. If the Pokes make Air force air it out they will be grounded and the Cowboys should win easily. Air Force will score but it will not be enough as Wyoming finally starts to get things on track with a win heading into the meat of conference play.

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Brad Reed - WYONATION

Poke Pick: My Poke pick this week will continue to remain unchanged.. Brett Smith. Still waiting for someone else to step it up. Last week Ghaali Muhammad had a terrific game for the Pokes earning some national recognition for his effort. The defense did some great things in shutting down the Wolfpack rushing attack.. unfortunately the passing attack was neglected. Baby steps. Back to my pick, the offense needs playmakers to step up. Robert Herron returned last week and caught a pair of touchdowns. Welcome back, Robert. If Herron is healthy this week I think the Pokes can be pretty effective through the air. Need a big day from Smith, but also need him to keep his head in the game and no be ejected. Smith was pretty down on himself after the game, but the kid obviously plays this game with a lot of passion and fire.. I wish everyone on the team played with his fire. I didn't get to watch the game but it sounded like the calls against Smith might have been a little iffy.. but when you're playing on the road you have to be on your best behavior sometimes.

Score Prediction: Last year's game in Colorado Springs was a close one and took some late game shenanigans for the Pokes to win. I suspect this game will be much of the same way. It seems like the Cowboys and Falcons play a lot of really close games against each other as they're typically two pretty evenly matched teams even when one team is up while the other is down. The Pokes will need the defense to really be focused on playing assignment football and keep the missed tackles in check. Running back Cody Getz is for real and has been tearing defenses a part all season long. Falcon quarterback Conner Dietz isn't a slouch rushing the football himself. As always the Falcons are near the top in the country for rushing yards per game and I don't think I have to mention where the Cowboy defense ranks in rush defense. Last week against Nevada was a great start, with any luck the Cowboys can keep playing well against the run and limit Air Force's passing options. I think much like last year we're going to see this game come down to the final drive. Cowboys 24, Air Force 20.

The Cowboys played very well against Nevada last week and it sure appeared that they should have won that game. It's really frustrating for everyone either within the program or supporters of the program to get this close in games and not be able to win them. To win football games you have to play at 100% for 60 minutes and unfortunately for the Pokes, the last 2 minutes of the game sure hurt them. I don't know whether we should be encouraged by the progress being made by the Pokes that they're taking a team like Nevada to the wire or we should be irate as fans wondering why can't our program get over this hump. I think we saw a fair amount of frustration boil over last weekend with two Brett Smith personal fouls. This Cowboy team is better than their record, but if you want to play in the post season close wins don't make you go bowling. The Falcons, as always, are a solid football team. They played a very good game against Michigan at the Big House and probably should have beaten Navy this past weekend. If anything, Air Force definitely wins the award for the best uniforms. Last weekend's F-22 Raptor/B-2 Spirit sure were great to see. Conner Dietz and Cody Getz seem to be a two man wrecking crew on the ground right now, that's a team that rushes the football very well. Normally Air Force gets a lot of yards up the middle of the field, but Getz seems to have great speed and vision and gets to the outside in a hurry and takes off down the sidelines. He runs much bigger than he is and is a ton of fun to watch. The Cowboys need to corral that guy if they want to win the game. He's had three 200 yard rushing days so far this year. Is he the best running back in the Mountain West? I'd say he's probably got the edge of Nevada's Stephfon Jefferson. The emergence of Tedder Easton last week gives me hope they we won't see nearly as many 3 and outs this week.. that's encouraging! This should be another great Cowboy/Falcon game in the long line of this rivalry. This weekend we get over the hump. Go Pokes!

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Matt Hargleroad - COWBOY ALTITUDE

Poke Pick: Ghaali Muhammad

Score: Wyoming 27 Air Force 23

Ghaali has become a tackling machine after locking up the starting job. With 15 tackles against Nevada he now leads the defense it total tackles (45) and solo tackles (28). He has faced the triple option of Air Force his freshmen and sophomore years. He'll need to be able to stop Cody Getz from turning runs on the edge into big gains. Missed tackles can not be an issue this week for the Cowboy defense.

Last week my reverse psychology almost worked as I predicted a loss and the Cowboys nearly prevailed. Since they lost I'm scrapping that and predicting another very close game with Air Force. You can pretty much throw the records out when these two teams meet. A loss here would put Wyoming on the verge on being eliminated from a bowl game.

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