Pokes look to get back on the right track in Saturday matchup with Wofford
The Wyoming Cowboys will welcome the Wofford Terriers to War Memorial Stadium on Saturday in the first meeting between the two schools. Wofford College is located in Spartanburg, S.C. It is only the third time in history that Wyoming has played a team from the state of South Carolina. Saturday’s game is schedule to kick off at 2 p.m., M.T., from Jonah Field at War Memorial Stadium. Tickets to Saturday’s game are still available by: going online at GoWyo.com/tickets, calling the UW Athletics Ticket Office at 307-766-7220, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by stopping by the UW Athletics Ticket Office on the west side of the Arena-Auditorium. On game day, tickets will be available for sale on the east side of War Memorial Stadium.
The Wyoming Cowboys will be looking to even their 2018 record at 2-2 this week when they host the Wofford Terriers. Wyoming began the 2016 and ’17 seasons with 2-2 records and went on to post records of 8-6 in 2016 and 8-5 in 2017 on way to bowl bids each season.
Another in a Series of Challenging Opponents
Wyoming’s 2018 season features a challenging schedule that includes seven opponents who advanced to bowl games a year ago and three teams who won bowl games. This week’s opponent, Wofford, also appeared in postseason last season. Wofford is a talented team that advanced all the way to the quarterfinals of the 2017 NCAA Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) Playoffs before losing to eventual national champion North Dakota State. The Terriers have won both of their previous games this season, defeating The Citadel, 28-21, in Week 1 and VMI, 59-14, last week. Wofford posted a 10-3 record in 2017.
Each of Wyoming’s first four opponents this season — New Mexico State, Washington State, Missouri and Wofford — appeared in postseason last season.
Playing Teams From South Carolina
The only other South Carolina teams that Wyoming has previously played are Furman and The Citadel. The Cowboys are 1-0 versus Furman, having defeated the Paladins 20-14 in 2001 in Laramie. Furman is based in Greenville, S.C. Wyoming is also 1-0 versus The Citadel from Charleston, S.C. In 2002, UW defeated The Citadel by a score of 34-30 in Laramie.
The Wofford Terriers are only the third current member of the Southern Conference that Wyoming has played in its history. The other two previous SoCon opponents faced by the Cowboys are those same two South Carolina teams Furman (2001) and The Citadel (2002).
Wyoming’s Record Versus NCAA Football Championship Subdivision Teams Since 2000
Since the 2000 season, the Wyoming Cowboys have played 15 games against teams from the Football Championship Subdivision, formerly Division IAA. The Cowboys have posted a 13-2 record in those games. All 15 games have been played in War Memorial Stadium.
Cowboy strong safety Andrew Wingard has moved into very rare company this season. With his 20 tackles in this, his senior season, Wingard now has 387 career tackles.
In his most recent game, he recorded 12 tackles versus Missouri. Those 12 tackles moved Wingard into the No. 3 spot on Wyoming’s career tackle list, passing former Cowboy safety John Salley, who was credited with 379 career tackles from 1979-82. Wingard has also passed two other former Cowboy greats this season — Chris Prosinski, who was credited with 373 tackles during his career from 2007-10, and Gabe Knapton, who made 368 tackles from 2008-11.
The only former Cowboys who Wingard is chasing atop the Wyoming career tackle list are: linebacker Jim Talich, who made 440 career tackles from 1994-97, and school record holder Galand Thaxton, who recorded 467 career tackles from 1984-87. Wingard is 53 tackles away from tying Talich and is 80 tackles away from Thaxton.
Wingard is also approaching the Mountain West Conference record for career tackles. That record is held by Carmen Messina of the University of New Mexico, who was credited with 454 tackles from 2008-11. Wingard trails Messina by 67 career tackles.
Junior place-kicker Cooper Rothe is having another outstanding season in 2018. Rothe is a perfect 5 of 5 in field-goal attempts this season, including making a career long 51-yarder at Missouri last week. His five field goals this season were made from 36 and 39 yards at New Mexico State, from 30 yards vs. Washington State and from 51 and 36 yards at Missouri.
A year ago, Rothe made 15 of 18 (83.3 percent) field-goal attempts. Combined over the past two seasons, he has now made 20 of his last 23 field-goal attempts (87.0 percent).
Rothe has made his last eight consecutive field goals, including making all three of his attempts in the 2017 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl victory. His last miss was a 49-yarder in his final attempt at San Jose State in the last regular-season game of the 2017 season. He is tied for No. 1 in the nation in both field-goal percentage (100%) and point-after-touchdown percentage (100%) this season, and ranks No. 22 in the nation in field goals made per game (1.67 per game).
Antonio Hull Becoming a Takeaway Specialist
After missing the 2017 season due to injury, redshirt junior cornerback Antonio Hull has bounced back strong this season. Hull has been very productive through the first three games of the season, particularly in creating takeaways for the Cowboy defense.
Hull has a team high two takeaways this season. He intercepted a pass against Washington State, and against Missouri he both forced a fumble and recovered that same fumble when he stripped the ball out of the arms of a Tiger receiver. Prior to missing last season, Hull started nine games as a true freshman in 2015, and started 11 games in 2016. He is perhaps best remembered for knocking down a two-point conversion pass attempt in 2016 on the final play of the game to preserve a 34-33 win over #24 ranked San Diego State. That win was critical to Wyoming capturing the 2016 Mountain Division title and earning the right to host the 2016 Mountain West Conference Championship Game.
Hull is tied for No. 10 in the nation in fumble recoveries this season and ranks No. 20 in interceptions.
Special Activities at Saturday’s Game
There are many special activities planned around Saturday’s Wofford-Wyoming game, including: Energy Day, Ag Day, Band Day, Fan Fest and Buddy Walk.
Saturday’s game will be video streamed on GoWyo.com, on the Mountain West Network and on Stadium. The game will be broadcast on radio over the 26 affiliate stations of the Cowboy Sports Network. The radio pregame will begin at 1 p.m. this Saturday.