March 21, 2005
LARAMIE, Wyo. -
With enthusiasm as high as the mountains visible in the distance, Joe Glenn and his Wyoming football team opened 20 days of spring training on Monday, inside War Memorial Fieldhouse.
As is his philosphy, Glenn indicated the training session would emphasize fundamentals, teaching and learning. "We want to get better and stay healthy at the same time," he said Monday. "As I always say, we are not out to beat Wyoming."
Glenn welcomes 48 lettermen from last year's Pioneer PureVision Las Vegas Bowl champions to spring training. That breaks down to 21 offensively, 23 defensively, and four special teams players. There are nine offensive starters and eight defensive starters returning, as well as the punter and placekicker on special teams.
The Cowboys will practice Monday, Tuesday and Thursday this week, then break for the Easter weekend. Beginning next week, they will practice Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. They will practice in War Memorial Stadium. Scrimmages are scheduled for April 9, and for the final practice of the session, April 16.
"It's a great time to be a Cowboy," Glenn said Monday. "We are so excited to pick up right where we left off. The bowl victory was a great boost for this program for so many reasons. The confidence level is very high. We could not be more pleased with the off-season workouts. It was apparent that there has been tremendous `buy-in' by our guys for what we are trying to do. It's a great time to be a Cowboy. I really give a great deal of credit to our weight-training staff, Scott Bennett, Kathy Crowe and Gabe Teeple. They did a tremendous job for us.
"We had 19 all-time records set in the weight room during our off-season program," Glenn continued. "There were 187 different personal bests. It was highly successful, and gives us a great springboard into our training session."
As is usual with Glenn, the Cowboys will begin at ground zero, installing both offensive and defensive packages during spring ball. "We'll have a few wrinkles to add, but we are going to begin from the beginning with everything. We're looking forward to an exciting spring."
While the team is loaded with positives, there are some areas of focus for the coaching staff during this session, according to Glenn. "We are looking for a backup quarterback (to starter Corey Bramlet) and a center to replace Trenton (graduated senior Franz). As always we are looking to create more depth in the offensive line. Because we have so many running backs sitting out the spring, there is an opportunity available for some young running backs to show us what they can do.
"Those are certainly areas of concentration," Glenn said. "But this team has a chance to be better based on competition, and the experience and depth available. We're excited about our prospects in the secondary, at wide receiver in the defensive front, and in our special teams area. We have four solid starters returning in the offensive line as well, which is so important But we need to find a center and create more depth there."
Several Cowboys will miss spring training due to injury, Glenn said. Tight end John Wadkowski (knee), running backs Joe Harris (knee) and Ivan Harrision (knee, shoulder), will miss the entire spring. Players like receiver Jovon Boukinight (navicular), tight end Chris Sundberg (knee), running backs Wynel Seldon (foot), and Alex Renshaw (ankle, leg). offensive lineman Drew Severn (shoulder), linebacker Matt Chase (knee), and tight end Chris Sundberg (knee) could return at some point during the training period.
"There is a lot of motivation by the team to return to the postseason next year," Glenn said. "That ws evident in the off-season program, and I'm sure it will be there during spring training."