Wyoming Coach Dave Christensen Names Starting QB

Aug. 23, 2011

LARAMIE, Wyo. - The Wyoming Cowboys have a starting quarterback, as head coach Dave Christensen announced Tuesday that freshman Brett Smith from Salem, Ore., will start the season opener versus Weber State on Sept. 3. Christensen decided to make the announcement Tuesday as the focus of practice turns to game preparation for Weber State.

"Brett (Smith) was obviously ahead of the other quarterbacks in his development, having had the experience of going through spring practice," said Christensen. "He played extremely consistent throughout fall camp and did a great job of managing the offense, making decisions and protecting the football. He posted a very high completion percentage during fall camp, and really worked hard to earn the starting spot.

"Colby (Kirkegaard) is a little bit ahead of Adam (Pittser) at this point, so he will be in the No. 2 spot as we head into the season. I think that had a lot to do with Colby playing one year of junior college football before he transferred here this fall.

"Adam of course is right out of high school, like Brett, but he didn't have the luxury of graduating early like Brett did and joining us last spring. I think they are all three great young prospects, and we look forward to working with the three of them and developing their skills as the season goes on."

In three fall scrimmages, Smith completed 48 of 65 pass attempts (73.8 percent) for 563 yards. He threw five touchdown passes and only one interception.

Kirkegaard completed 46 of 65 passes (70.8 percent) for 325 yards, one TD and two interceptions. Pittser connected on 32 of 65 pass attempts (49.2 percent) for 268 yards, two TDs and one interception.

Smith was the 2010 Gatorade Football Player of the Year in the state of Oregon in 2010, playing his high school football at West Salem High School in Salem, Ore. He was also named First Team All-State Class 6A by The Oregonian his senior season. Class 6A is the largest classification in the state of Oregon.

Kirkegaard was the starting quarterback in 2010 at Phoenix College (Junior College) in Phoenix, Ariz. He threw for 1,695 yards and 12 touchdowns at Phoenix College. Kirkegaard played his high school football at Arcadia High School in Phoenix.

Pittser was ranked by Rivals.com as the No. 19 best high school, dual-threat quarterback in the country this past year. He played his high school football at Richmond-Burton High School in Richmond, Ill. Pittser also earned Honorable Mention All-State honors from the Chicago Tribune as a high school senior.