Aug. 18, 2011
LARAMIE, Wyo. - The 2011 fall football camp for the Wyoming Cowboys will conclude its first phase this Saturday, Aug. 20 when the Cowboys will hold a 10 a.m. practice open to the public and media in War Memorial Stadium. Originally, the Cowboy coaching staff had scheduled its fourth and final scrimmage for Saturday, but on Thursday head coach Dave Christensen said that he and his staff had decided to forego the fourth scrimmage due to the progress his team had made up to this point.
Beginning next Tuesday, the Cowboys will enter a new phase of fall camp when they will begin to focus on their season-opening opponent Weber State.
"I'm very pleased with where our team is at, and where we're at from a health standpoint," said Christensen. "We put a lot of physical work into our early practices. That physical work included more live tackling than we had incorporated into either fall camp our first two years. Our kids have given great effort every practice, and because of that we've been able to accomplish a lot in each of our first 17 practices.
"Our players have had between 125-150 live snaps each to this point. We feel that we have a good handle on which players are going to be able to help us this year.
"We've been able to install virtually all of our offensive and defensive schemes.
"What we will focus on Saturday, rather than scrimmaging, is to fine tune our gameday procedures. We want to rehearse what happens in an actual game -- substituting, signaling in plays -- we will try to simulate a gameday setting.
"I feel like we are where we need to be as we enter next week when we will start to focus on preparation for our first game versus Weber State."
While fall practice has gone very well to date, the Cowboys were not able to escape fall camp without losing some players to injury. Senior H-Back Bryson Studnicka, senior linebacker Oliver Schober and sophomore running back Nehemie Kankolongo are all lost for the season due to injury. Sophomore tight end Spencer Bruce will be out for at least two months.
A couple key positions that Christensen and his staff were anxious to see develop during fall camp have pleased the third-year head coach. Those positions are offensive line and receiver.
"I'm really pleased with the offensive line's progress," said christensen. "Obviously, the receivers depth has improved dramatically. The difference between the offensive line and the receiver depth is the offensive line depth includes more experienced players. At the receiver position, it's just a matter of bringing some of those young guys along."
As was originally announced at the conclusion of spring practice, the Cowboys will name game captains each week this season rather than naming season-long captains. The first game's captains will be released the week leading up to the Weber State game.
Christensen will announce an updated depth chart on Monday, Aug. 29 at his first weekly press conference of the season.
Christensen will also announce at his Aug. 29 press conference the opening-day uniforms the Cowboys will wear versus Weber State. The opening-day uniforms will be determined by the vote of Wyoming fans, who have been voting throughout the month of August at www.WyomingAthletics.com. Voting for the opening-day uniforms will close on Thursday, Aug. 25.