The Pokes notched their first win of the 2017 season last week with a 27-0 win over Gardner-Webb and it wasn’t as close as the score might indicate. This week the Pokes welcome the Oregon Ducks into War Memorial Stadium. Oregon comes in 2-0 and just beat Nebraska 42-35. This will be a very tough challenge for the Pokes.

There was no spread posted for last week’s game vs Gardner-Webb. The Cowboys come into this week’s contest as 14.5-point underdogs.

 

Straight UpAgainst the Spread

Robert Gagliardi

2-00-1

Brandon Foster

2-01-0
Brad Reed1-1

0-1

Chad Smith2-0

1-0

Connor Cunningham1-1

0-1

Wyoming Cowboys

1-1

0-1

 

Robert Gagliardi, Wyosports.net

What are your thoughts on the Gardner-Webb game? 

First shut out by the defense since 2010 and an efficient game from the passing game. However, a lack of a run game is by far the most glaring concern with this team. Still, Wyoming beat a FCS team like Gardner-Webb like it should — convincingly.

Who was your MVP last week?  WR Austin Conway

Conway, with career-highs of 11 catches for 135 yards. Set the tone for the rest of the passing game in the first quarter. Added a 45-yard punt return later. The guy did it all.

Poke Pick: The run game

Yes, quarterback Josh Allen must be good in the pass game, but Wyoming must have some semblance of a run game to eat up clock and not make the offense so one-dimensional. 

What needs to happen for Wyoming to win?

Be balanced on offense, eat up clock, finish drives with points and adjust to Oregon’s offensive speed and skill sooner than later.

Game Prediction:

I think Oregon has too many weapons on offense, and also more speed and skill defensively than Wyoming can handle. It will be a good game, but in the end Oregon wins. Wyoming 21, Oregon 38

 

Brandon Foster, Casper Star-Tribune

What are your thoughts on the Gardner-Webb game? 

You always have to take an FCS win with a grain of salt, and I thought Wyoming’s second-half performance was disheartening. The offense struggled to run more than it should have against the Runnin’ Bulldogs, and kind of left a sour taste in my mouth, even though the shutout should not be overlooked.

Who was your MVP last week? DE Kevin Prosser

The defensive end is have had a great start for the Cowboys, which I’m honestly not all that surprised by. Keeping that up against Oregon will be key.

Poke Pick: S Marcus Epps

Wyoming’s defense has been great so far but it’s also only faced 22 passes. The Ducks are going to air it out some, even though they have a balanced attack, and Wyoming’s defense hasn’t had to face that yet in 2017. Scottie Hazelton’s defense is supposed to put less pressure on the cornerbacks in coverage, so I’m eager to see how the safeties affect the pass game in this one.

What needs to happen for Wyoming to win?

Wyoming is going to need a huge game from Josh Allen. Frankly, he’s their most talented player, and he plays at the position that can most impact a game. You don’t upset a team like Oregon unless that dude has a big role. Also, don’t allow 70 points.

Game Prediction:

I really think Wyoming is getting slept on in this one because of their poor showing in Iowa City, and I think that’s somewhat of a mistake because the Cowboys play so much better at home. I also think Oregon is really good. Wyoming 20, Oregon 38

 

Brad Reed, Wyonation.com

What are your thoughts on the Gardner-Webb game? 

Not a bad game for the Cowboys. They weren’t flashy on offense but they scored enough points to win. They were good on defense holding the Gardner-Webb Bulldogs to zero points. That’s always a win for the defense, no matter who the opponent is. The Cowboys saw the debut of Trey Woods at running back. Only two carries, but will be interesting to see how he’s used going forward and how effective it will be. Which is my next point, the rushing attack still hasn’t quite gotten the traction it’s wanted yet. Many factors play into this, but with pulling the redshirt off of Woods you can see the coaching staff might be concerned about the direction it’s currently headed. Austin Conway had a big game for the Cowboys, he’s going to be an electric player. All in all, win’s a win, at home.

Who was your MVP last week? WR Austin Conway

The guy did it all. Caught over 100 yards in passes, ran very well when returning punts. At some point this season he’s going to make a team pay big for punting to him. So fun to watch.  

Poke Pick: LB Logan Wilson

The guy is going to have his hands full this week stopping Royce Freeman and Justin Herbert. I think he’s going to have a big game to lead the Cowboy defense.

What needs to happen for Wyoming to win?

Don’t get burned by the big play. Oregon is full of speed and big plays and can beat you multiple ways. Cowboys need to keep the ball in front of them. Defense needs to be on its toes every play. Oregon is so good at the skill positions, the Cowboys need to be disciplined and not miss tackles. That said, the Cowboys need their own big plays to get a lot of points on the board as this could be a track meet.

Game Prediction:

At the beginning of the season I thought the Cowboys had a pretty good shot at winning this game. New coach, new philosophy, just didn’t think the Ducks were gonna be good. Watched them last weekend vs Nebraska, and saw the 77 points they laid on Southern Utah and well.. My thoughts have gone astray. I’ll be happy to be wrong with this prediction, but Wyoming 35, Oregon 48.

 

Chad Smith, Wyonation.com

What are your thoughts on the Gardner-Webb game? 

You can’t complain about the defense. The first shutout since 2010 against CSU is something to be happy about and shows progress under Scottie Hazelton. The other side of the ball though seems to be still finding their feet. Josh Allen and the passing game got back on track against Gardner-Webb but the running game looked bogged down in mud.

Who was your MVP last week? The defense

The entire defense gets the game ball for producing 3 sacks, 7 tackles for loss and 1 interception while conceding zero points. 

Poke Pick: S Andrew Wingard

I have no idea what to expect from the offense this week. With Oregon RB Royce Freeman primed to have a prominent role in the Ducks offense look for Andrew Wingard to continue to be Andrew Wingard.  

What needs to happen for Wyoming to win?

Wyoming will have to play a perfect or near perfect football game to win this game. That would include no turnovers and re-establishing the run game to levels acceptable to Coach Bohl. It will also require Josh Allen to play at the top of his with perhaps a big running play or two from the signal caller.

Game Prediction:

The Wyoming defense is improved but I don’t see the Wyoming offense scoring enough points to come out on top. Wyoming 23, Oregon 38

 

Connor Cunningham, Wyonation.com

What are your thoughts on the Gardner-Webb game? 

I thought the Cowboys dominated from start to finish and probably could’ve scored every possession if they would have thrown more or allowed Josh Allen to use his feet. With that being said, the running game was atrocious. They still can’t seem to get it going.  I think it will get better going forward with Allen using his legs and I like the freshman Trey Woods. He reminds me a little bit of Brian Hill.

The defense had a nice day and dominated. GW didn’t stand a chance, as they were just simply over matched.

Who was your MVP last week? The Defense

Conway was the player of the game, but the defense didn’t allow GW to do anything and their dominance made it an easy day for the O. They overpowered GW so match that the Cowboy offense kind of went into cruise control and tried some different things. They didn’t seem too concerned with scoring.

Poke Pick: QB Josh Allen

His numbers against P5 schools have not been good, but he has never played a P5 at home. Allen has always played well at home. I think he is due for a big performance and he needs it in order for the Cowboys to have a chance.

What needs to happen for Wyoming to win?

They need to dominate the time of possession, limit turnovers, and cause a few of their own. If the Cowboys get out to a good start the crowd and momentum could allow for some things to happen. Oregon is fast, athletic, and talented. The more their offense is on the field, the worse it is for the Cowboys. Allen needs to extend drives and make some big plays.

Game Prediction:

I think that War Memorial will have an electric feel to it. I think they make some big plays early and hang around but I am afraid the Cowboys are just over matched and won’t be able to hang late. Wyoming 24, Oregon 37

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