April 5, 2003
LARAMIE, Wyo. -
The first week of spring practice for the Wyoming Cowboys wrapped up on Saturday with a two and one half hour practice at the "North Forty" practice field on the UW campus. The fourth of 15 spring practices for the Cowboys began in bright sunshine on a calm day in Laramie, but by the end of the day Cowboy fans, out to watch the full-padded practice, experienced a beautiful spring snow shower.
"We went through about three weather changes today," said University of Wyoming head football coach Joe Glenn. "We had some sunshine, then it got a little colder and then it started snowing before it ended up being a balmy spring game. This is good for us, and we've talked about this as a team. We are going to play three games at home next November. This is Wyoming and if it starts snowing in one of our games next fall, you'll see smiles come on our faces."
When asked how he felt after the first week of spring drills, Glenn emphasized the great attitude by his team.
"We are really excited about the attitude" said Glenn. "There is a great desire to win here, and I see that in the players eyes. Their eyes have the same look as the look I see in those of the people of Wyoming -- everyone here wants to compete and win. With that said, we're working hard. I've told several of our boosters that we're going to win, or we're going to die trying. I feel good about everything so far, we just don't have a measuring stick yet.
"We continue to make a little progress each practice. It will take us almost all 15 practices for us to get the majority of our offense installed. You can get through special teams just about twice during spring, with six areas of special teams. I think defense will get their system in a little bit sooner than the "O", they'll probably get it done in about 10 practices. But it will take almost the entire spring football to put in what we want to do offensively, and even then we won't add all of our specials and our trick plays."
Saturday's practice concluded with a few series of 11-on-11 team work. The team work involved "thud" only contact -- hitting without taking players to the ground. Offensively, Wyoming displayed an effective mid-range passing game, incorporating a number of screen passes. On the other side of the ball, the Cowboy defense came up with two interceptions in the team period -- one by senior cornerback Chris Dixon and a second one by senior free safety Nate Young that he returned 35 yards for a touchdown.
"I thought that Nate (Young) had a great pick," said Glenn. "We always tell the guys when you catch a ball, whether you're on offense or defense, take it to the house. He did a nice job of getting to the end zone. But even a better play I saw the defense make was on a deep post to Ryan McGuffey, when the two defenders made a great sandwich out of him to break up the pass. The defense is starting to do some things here early in spring ball that I like in terms of making plays and not giving up big plays. That is real encouraging."
In terms of 11 on 11 scrimmaging, there are only two dates scheduled -- Saturday, April 12 and Saturday, April 26.
The first of those two scrimmages will be on Saturday, April 12 at 1:00 p.m. Coach Glenn said the Cowboys will go through a normal pregame warm-up, with the scrimmage starting around 1:20 to 1:30 p.m. The scrimmage will take place in War Memorial Stadium.