Nov. 3, 2005
LARAMIE, Wyo. -
The Wyoming Cowboys and Utah Utes have a lot on the line this week when they play for the 78th time in the two schools' histories. Both the Cowboys and Utes enter Saturday's game with identical records -- 4-4 overall, 2-3 in Mountain West Conference play.
A team must post a winning record overall to earn bowl eligibility. Wyoming and Utah each have three games remaining on their schedules, and must win two of those three to become bowl eligible.
In 2004, the Cowboys and Utes were two of three teams in the MWC to earn bowl bids -- the other being New Mexico. Wyoming and Utah were the only two MWC teams to win their respective bowl games in 2004. UW defeated UCLA, 24-21, in the Pioneer PureVision Las Vegas Bowl. Utah defeated Pittsburgh, 35-7, in the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl.
Wyoming and Utah first played against each other on the football field on Oct. 31, 1904. Utah won that first meeting 23-0 in Laramie. The Utah series is the second longest rivalry for the Wyoming Cowboys. The only school Wyoming has played more times is Colorado State -- 97 meetings.
The Wyoming series is the third oldest for Utah. Utah's oldest rivalry is versus Utah State. The Utes and Aggies have played a total of 105 times, including a 31-7 Utah victory earlier this season. The Utes' second longest rivalry is against BYU. The meeting between Utah and BYU later this season will be the 87th.
Wyoming senior wide receiver Jovon Bouknight enters this week with 225 career receptions. He needs only seven more receptions to pass former Cowboy Ryan McGuffey for third place, and Bouknight needs only 15 more catches to pass former two-time All-American Ryan Yarborough for second place. McGuffey caught 231 passes during his college career from 2000-03. Yarborough had 239 receptions for the Cowboys from 1990-93. The Wyoming school recordholder is Marcus Harris, who caught 259 passes from 1993-96. Harris twice was named an All-American and also won the 1996 Biletnikoff Award as the nation's top receiver.
Saturday's game is scheduled to kick off at 1:07 p.m. from Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City. There is no television coverage for Saturday's game, but as with all Wyoming Football games the Cowboy Sports Network will broadcast the game live on radio beginning one-half hour prior to kickoff.