The transfer portal is in full swing and has more action in college football right now than any portal in your favorite science fiction show or movie. Teams from every conference in college football have been impacted. There has been a lot of action in the Mountain West with the coaching changes at Nevada and Colorado State while at Hawai’i the breakdown of the relationship between the coaches and the players is so bad the head coach’s own son has entered the portal.
The Cowboys have lost a total of 10 players in the month of December and now have some significant holes to fill. The NCAA will allow Wyoming to sign up to 32 players this signing cycle due to the 10 transfers that have left the team. Wyoming only signed 15 high school players in December so, in theory, they could sign another 20 players (HS, JUCO or Portal) but they would have to get down to the 85 scholarship limit for next August.
Wyoming has lost players at running back and safety but looks to have enough quality and depth on the roster to not need to dip into the portal to replace the outgoing players. The below breakdown is short on details because of the nature of the portal. The players in the portal are essentially only public knowledge if a school or player acknowledges they are in the portal and any offers they receive once in the portal are only known if announced by the player.
Now onto the position breakdown…
This is by far the most important position on this list. Both Wyoming quarterbacks who started games the past four seasons have left the program. Levi Williams who was the Potato Bowl MVP has announced his commitment to conference and division rival Utah State where reportedly his girlfriend/fiance is a volleyball player. Sean Chambers also entered the portal but to date, no offers for Chambers have been made public.
The only offer Wyoming has made that has been made public since the help wanted statement from Coach Bohl on Twitter has been to University of Buffalo Bulls graduate transfer Kyle Vantrease. The Bulls QB threw for 1,865 yards this season completing 61% of his passes while throwing 8 touchdowns and 6 interceptions. Digging through the portal list the only QB I’ve found with a Wyoming offer coming out of high school is Purdue transfer Jack Plummer.
Playing the connections game, another QB to keep your eye on is Duece Hogan from Iowa who current Wyoming offensive coordinator Tim Polasek would know about from his time as the offensive line coach in Iowa City. Hogan was a three-star prospect out of high school with scholarship offers from nine power five programs.
There are numerous other QBs in the portal who would fit Wyoming’s prostyle system but it’s a pretty competitive environment out there to land a quality QB. Wyoming has a job with playing time to offer but how many top QBs are going to want to come into a system where the passing game is not a priority and is inefficient? The coaches can try to sell Josh Allen all they want but he left Laramie four seasons ago and the QB production since then has been among the worse in the country. Wyoming has their work cut out and I like you will be very interested to see who they eventually land on.
Wide Receiver (1)
It came as no surprise that WR Isiah Neyor was hitting the portal. A wide receiver with his speed, size and talent isn’t going to waste his time in an offense that is allergic to the passing game. Wyoming now has no proven WR at the D1 level on its roster with the top returning WR being Joshua Cobbs who had 25 receptions for 245 yards as a freshman. Wyoming does have a stable of guys with good size who are all six feet tall or taller who will be learning on the job. Like the QB position, the self-imposed limitations on the offense will make it hard for Wyoming to attract a quality WR. Their best bet might be to get a package deal and convince a WR who played at the same school as whoever ends up being the transfer QB to join that QB in Laramie.
The Cowboys have lost both of their starting cornerbacks in CJ Coldon and Azizi Hearn. These departures only leave 5 scholarship CBs on the roster (including the incoming HS CB Josh Dixon) and of these only two (Stone and Glinton) have played in a college game and Glinton is currently listed as the starting nickel linebacker. The Pokes are in desperate need of cornerback help and need two experienced hands to keep the pass defense a strong point of the team.
Defensive End (1)
Garret Crall has graduated and Victor Jones has hit the portal so Wyoming has lost 2 of the 4 players on the two-deep on their depth chart at the defensive end position. Wyoming could use a ready-made defensive end with the strength and size to step right in and be a productive player. This would allow the younger players behind this transfer to get another year of size and strength under their belts. Right now there are plenty of defensive ends in the portal and Wyoming’s defensive success should attract a good player if Wyoming wants one.
Tight End (1)
This is a bonus position on my list. Wyoming doesn’t have an immediate need at this position but if they want to improve the offense they need more playmakers and need to bring in a pass-catching tight end. Right now the Pokes only have Treyton Welch as a capable pass catcher. He had 19 receptions for 163 yards this season and the other tight ends on the roster only contributed for an additional 3 receptions for 33 yards. Wyoming is in need of a tight-end talent injection to help the offense score more points.
The only problem here is Wyoming will insist that all their tight ends are reliable run blockers given the emphasis on the running game out of two tight-end sets. This is where Wyoming needs to reevaluate its system and look to inject talent onto the offense in an area where they lack playmakers.
Tom Burman made an appearance on Cheyenne radio last Thursday and stated that he and Bohl have sat down and made a plan on how to utilize the transfer portal for incomings. You can listen to that interview HERE. Wyoming 100% needs to utilize the portal as they have too many key positions lacking experience on the current roster. My plan above is a middle ground between the Wyoming status quo (no transfers) and the Utah State plan (15+ transfers last season) that saw them win a Mountain West Conference title in Blake Anderson’s first year as head coach.
Sabastian Hurst has to fit in as defensive end, was tough as nails in high school looked good on special teams?