Oct. 15, 2013
LARAMIE, Wyo. -
The Border War and Battle for the Bronze Boot -- Wyoming versus Colorado State -- the series resumes for the 105th time this Saturday. Kickoff is set for noon in Wyoming's War Memorial Stadium.
The series is the oldest rivalry for both schools. Wyoming has won the last four meetings in the series, accomplishing something that it hadn't achieved since 1970-73.
The Border War series has been played in three different centuries, dating back to Nov. 30, 1899, when CSU won the first meeting 12-0 in Fort Collins, Colo. This year is the 114th anniversary of that first meeting.
UW trails in the overall "Border War" series 44-55-5. But since the end of World War II, the Cowboys hold a 39-28-0 lead in the last 67 consecutive meetings since the series was renewed in 1946. There was a three-year break in the series in 1943, `44 and `45 due to World War II. Saturday's game will mark the 68th straight year the two archrivals will meet on the football field.
This year's meeting will be the 46th time the two schools have battled for the Bronze Boot. The Bronze Boot traveling trophy was introduced to the series in 1968. It was an actual boot worn in Vietnam by CSU alum Dan Romero. Wyoming leads the "Bronze Boot" portion of the series 24-21.
For the second consecutive season, the game is being played in Laramie, Wyo. The game has not been played in Laramie in consecutive years since the 1963 and `64 seasons.
Head coach Dave Christensen and his Cowboys have gotten off to a strong start this season, going 4-2 and 2-0 in the Mountain West Conference to lead the Mountain Division. This is the third Dave Christensen-coached team to begin a season 4-2. The 2009 and 2011 teams also began 4-2 and earned New Mexico Bowl bids. The 2011 Cowboys began the season 5-2 on way to an 8-5 record.
The Cowboys have begun the Mountain West Conference race 2-0 this season. The last time a Wyoming team began conference play 3-0 was back in 1998 in Wyoming's final year as a member of the Western Athletic Conference. The Cowboys posted a 6-0 conference start that season, before losing its final two conference games of the year. Wyoming has never begun conference play 3-0 since it has been a member of the Mountain West.
UW is 3-0 at home in War Memorial Stadium this season. The last time a Wyoming team moved to 4-0 at home was the 2004 campaign. The 2004 Cowboys improved to 5-0, before losing the final home game of the season to a No. 7 ranked Utah team. The 2004 Cowboys went on to earn a bid in the Las Vegas Bowl and defeat UCLA 24-21.
In the Cowboys' most recent victory last week versus New Mexico, Wyoming's defense forced three turnovers by the Lobos, playing a key role in the Cowboys' victory. Two of those turnovers forced by the defense led to scores on the ensuing drives by the Pokes.
Wyoming junior quarterback Brett Smith continues to receive national recognition this season. Smith, who ranks No. 3 in the nation in total offense, averaging 379.0 yards per game, was added to the Maxwell Award Watch list this past week. The Maxwell Award is presented annually to the outstanding collegiate football player in America. The Award has been presented every year since 1937 and is named in honor of Robert W. "Tiny" Maxwell.
One of the aspects of the Wyoming-Colorado State rivalry that makes it great are the numerous players who hail from the states of Wyoming and Colorado and in many cases have played against one another since their high school years. There are nine players on the 2013 Wyoming roster who came to UW from the state of Wyoming and 22 who hail from Colorado. Of the 22 Colorado Cowboys, 12 have starting experience. Spencer Bruce is the one Wyoming native who has starting experience for the Cowboys. CSU has 46 players listed on its roster from Colorado but none from Wyoming this season.
Saturday's game will be televised live by ROOT Sports beginning at Noon, Mountain Time. Saturday's 105th Border War will also be broadcast on radio over the Cowboy Sports Network, beginning with the pregame show at 11 a.m.