Beat the Sheep

Wyoming is an amazing place for many, many reasons. It is home to honest, hard-working people. It’s filled with idyllic, picturesque communities like Buffalo, Sheridan, Cody, and Jackson Hole (not Wheatland, that place is a blight). It is wide open spaces, vast prairies, and pristine mountain forests. Wyoming is hunting, fishing, camping, and hiking. It is four distinct seasons, each bringing its own flavor. Anybody who lives, or has lived in Wyoming can tell you that it’s a place like no other. It’s God’s Country. And for all of its many virtues, perhaps the greatest is the fact that Wyoming is not Colorado.

It truly is unfortunate that we have to share a border with Colorado. It’s like sitting at the Thanksgiving table next to your prep school cousin who’s wearing a plaid sweater vest and can’t stop talking about himself, as he delicately eats one pea at a time. You try to remain civil, while seriously considering bashing him upside the head with a turkey leg. I can only speculate that Colorado was placed next to Wyoming only to illustrate the difference between really cool and really lame.

When you are from Wyoming, you are damn proud of it. When you are from Colorado, you wish you were from Wyoming. Wyomingites all share a very special bond. That bond stems from the gem city of the plains, Laramie. We love our University and we love our football team. Every Saturday in the fall, when there is a home game, people from all over the state make the pilgrimage to War Memorial Stadium to cheer on the Pokes.

The Cowboys have been through some rough times in recent years. Wins have been hard to come by. Coach Bohl and his staff are working hard to try and turn things around. The Pokes are 2-2 this year. They are coming off a tough loss to Eastern Michigan last Friday night. But today, none of that matters. Today, Coach Bohl, the Pokes, and the whole state of Wyoming is focused on one thing……..beating the shit out of CSU.

This is THE game of the year. It’s a heated rivalry, it’s the bronze boot, it’s blue collar toughness versus green pants softness. Wyoming hasn’t beaten the Rams since 2012. Before that, they had taken four in a row. The Bronze Boot has been wasting away in Ft. Collins for too long. Tonight, the Pokes aim to bring it back to where it belongs.

The Rams, just like the Cowboys, are 2-2 coming into tonight’s contest. Their two wins have come at home against UTSA and Northern Colorado. They were blown out by CU, 44-7, and lost a close one to Minnesota, 23-14. None of that matters now. This is an intense rivalry, and both schools know just how much this means to their respective states and fan bases.

Each team has hoisted the Bronze Boot 24 times since the tradition started 48 years ago. This is a game that normally takes place later in the season, but the stakes are high no matter when they lace it up. On offense, Wyoming will rely on star players Josh Allen, Brian Hill, and Tanner Gentry. Hill has already rushed for 463 yards and 6 touchdowns. Allen has thrown for 6 touchdowns, three of those going to Gentry. All three of these guys need to be big tonight.

Defensively, the Pokes are led by Lucas Wacha, Carl Granderson, and Andrew Wingard. These stalwarts will be tasked with limiting a Ram offense led by QB Colin Hill and running backs Izzy Matthews and Dalyn Dawkins. Wyoming will need to do a good job of controlling their emotions, particularly at the beginning of the game, which kicks of at 8:15 pm in Fort Collins. The atmosphere will be intense. The crowd will be drunken and raucous, and there will be a few CSU fans too I suppose.

Neither team has been particularly stout on defense, each giving up over 400 yards per game. Somebody will have to make some plays on that side of the ball. Offensively, Wyoming is averaging 31.5 pts. per game to CSU’s 25.3. On paper, the teams look fairly evenly matched. It will come down to who can control the line of scrimmage and win the turnover battle.

So Wyoming fans, put on your Brown and Gold and get ready. Ice down the man sodas and fire up the grill. It’s time to bring that boot back to Laramie, and send those Rams whimpering back to their mothers. This is about pride and it’s about toughness. It’s about one state and one team. It’s about Wyoming.

All that’s left to say now is….GO POKES, BEAT THE SHEEP!!!

In heaven there is no beer……you know the rest.

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