Week 5 is just around the corner, and Wyoming turned in what turned out to be another underwhelming performance. The 0-4 Cowboys will travel to the east coast to take on the 2-1 Appalachian State Mountaineers of the Sun Belt Conference.

The Cowboys were a slight home underdog last week and were not able to cover the spread. They are now 1-3 ATS and come into this week’s game as a 25 point underdog on the road.

The standings are as follows:

 

Straight Up

Against the Spread

Robert Gagliardi

1-31-3

Ryan Holmgren

1-3

3-1

Brad Reed1-3

1-3

Chad Smith

2-2

2-2

Connor Cunningham

1-3

1-3

 

Robert Gagliardi, Wyosports.net

Thoughts on last week’s game?

Pretty much same-story, different game. The defense gave up too many big plays (three touchdowns on plays of 56, 64 and 43 yards), and the offense couldn’t score when it needed to the most. New Mexico sold out on stopping Wyoming run game,and it worked with only 42 yards.

Pokes Pick: Defensive back 7

With changes at linebacker and in the secondary, can this group be consistent enough to keep the Cowboys in the game? Wyoming’s allowed 101 points in the first half this season, and the defense must play better at the start of games — and late in games, too — for this team to have a chance.

The Cowboys win if…

The defense is more consistent from start to finish, and the offense can finish drives. 

Game Prediction:

I don’t see any of those things happening Saturday at Appalachian State. This may be the best defense Wyoming has faced to this point, and the Mountaineers have some formidable weapons offensively. Appalachian State 38, Wyoming 14

 

Ryan Holmgren, Casper Star-Tribune

Thoughts on last week’s game?

Well, that was a wildly disappointing outing by Wyoming last week. UW simply failed to put the ball in the end zone and once again couldn’t stop the big play. It seems like it’s the same story each week. I was pleased with Cameron Coffman’s play despite the two late interceptions, tough.

Pokes pick: Cameron Coffman, QB

Appalachian State has only allowed 72.7 rushing yards per game — 2.3 per carry. Assuming Wyoming has trouble running, like it did against fellow three-down defenses like North Dakota and New Mexico, the Pokes will be reliant on the pass. Coffman completed 11 straight passes at one points last week before throwing that costly pick. Still, he leads the Mountain West Conference in passing yards per game, and he’s completed nearly 70 percent of his passes over the past two weeks. He’ll need to be brilliant for Wyoming to remain competitive.

The Cowboys win if…

Wyoming needs to eliminate the big play to win this game. Appalachian State has some serious play-makers, which makes that a tough task. If the Cowboys can do that, they might have a chance at spoiling the Mountaineers’ homecoming.

Game Prediction:

Coffman will throw for three more touchdowns, but UW’s offense won’t be able to keep up and the Pokes’ defense, with some changing parts, will struggle to slow down the Mountaineers. Appalachian State 49 Wyoming 21

 

Brad Reed, Wyonation.com

Thoughts on last week’s game?

Wyoming is probably thinking they’d like to have that game back. So much more of the same, one step forward, two steps back. Wyoming is a very penalized team and they seem to come rolling in at the most inopportune times. Getting beat is one thing, getting beat by yourselves is certainly not helpful either. Cameron Coffman once again had a solid performance, this coming against the Lobos. Tanner Gentry also turned in another 100 yard performance. These two are clicking just right. Jake Mulhardt had another nice game for the Cowboys as well. However, the disappearance of the rushing attack is fairly concerning. Brian Hill had a very down performance compared to his previous two weeks. With Shaun Wick battling an illness Hill was left to his own for the most part and he couldn’t find many running lanes. Hope is starting to dwindle with the Cowboy fanbase, that game looked pretty winnable on paper.

Pokes Pick: Cam Coffman, QB

Hard to argue against Cam Coffman right now. He’s playing at a very high level, as are his two top targets Gentry and Mulhardt. A couple of more receivers need to step up and make their name known, as those three, plus Brian Hill, can’t carry the load on their own and win football games.

The Cowboys win if…

This is going to be a strange game. There is a hurricane bearing down on the Carolina’s right now and even though I picked Coffman to be the Poke Pick, there’s a very real possibility that the Cowboys may not be able to throw the ball in very rainy and possibly windy conditions. That being said, this could turn into a war in the trenches. Wyoming isn’t necessarily equipped for this kind of battle offensively, but Brian Hill has proven he can run behind this line. If Shaun Wick can somehow get going, plus having Hill running at full speed maybe there’s a chance for the Cowboys to slow down the very dynamic Appalachian State offense. A perfect combination of those two things could lead to a Cowboy victory, and in some pretty odd circumstances in Boone anything could happen.

Game Prediction:

I predict there’s going to be some soaking wet Cowboys by the time this game is finished. I don’t know if the Cowboy defense is up to the task of putting the Appalachian State offense to rest this week. I think the Cowboys will probably cover the spread, but I don’t think they’ll win. Appalachian State 38, Wyoming 20

 

Chad Smith, Wyonation.com

Thoughts on last week’s game?

A home game versus New Mexico was one of the most winnable remaining games on paper and the loss will hurt the Cowboys. Cam Coffman played well and that was good to see but football is a team game and the Cowboys needed more from their defense. I’m not sure if that will happen this season.

Pokes Pick: Cam Coffman, QB

The stout App State rushing defense only allowing 2.29 yards per carry will force the Pokes to throw to move the ball and Cam Coffman will have another strong game.

The Cowboys win if…

The Appalachian State Mountaineers decide to take a team hike up and down the Appalachian Trail instead of playing football on Saturday afternoon.

Game Prediction:

The Pokes played reasonable well in their only road game to date but traveling out east is a different animal than traveling west. I’m not a big fan of comparative scores because every game is different but App State just beat an Old Dominion team 49-0 that beat Eastern Michigan 38-34 early in the year. It’s going to be a long day for the Pokes.  Appalachian State 42 Wyoming 17

 

Connor Cunningham, Wyonation.com

Thoughts on last week’s game?

In one word, disappointing. Wyoming again showed they are not able to prevent the big play. The defense played a better second half, but you can’t dig yourself a 28-7 hole so early in a football game. This football team has a long ways to go, and I don’t know if there is a win left on the schedule at this point.

Poke Pick: Brian Hill, RB

Brian Hill is the team’s best play and he has had 2 outstanding games and 2 not so outstanding games. Which will show up on Saturday? The answer to that question will likely determine if Wyoming can find a way to stay in this football game. App State has a stout defense and is arguably the best football team Wyoming will have seen to date. To travel across the country with 25 freshman is not favorable either. Brian Hill needs to have a big game.

Wyoming wins if…

They cause 3 or more turnovers. That is a big if for a football team that has caused one turnover all season and has struggled to make the easy play, let alone the big one.

Game Prediction:

25 freshmen traveling across the country to play the best team they have seen to date, along with a sorry defense, and against a good defense. That is a recipe for disaster. I think the Pokes get some points in garbage time and manage to cover, but this game won’t be close.

Appalachian State 52 Wyoming 28

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