Wyoming vs. San Jose State: Cowboys Top Spartans, 24-9
Cowboys use ground game to get the win.
San Jose State didn’t have enough offense
In what was a cold, windy and snowy game in Laramie, the Cowboys did what they do best, effectively run the football and play great defense. Nico Evans carried the ball 33 times for 187 yards while freshman QB Sean Chambers had 129 yards on the ground for a 7.6 yard average. In total, the Cowboys offense racked up 424 rushing yards. The Spartans, on the other hand, were unable to get there offense going until the second half to make it close. In the first half, the Spartans had only 39 yards and two first downs. Josh Love was under duress for most of the game and Tyler Nevins had very little holes to run through.
From the start, Wyoming pounded the ball down the Spartans throats as they went 9 plays and 66 yards to open the game. 8 of those 9 plays were runs with the second play of the game gaining Wyoming 39 yards on a run by Jevon Bigelow. The Spartans were able to hold the Cowboys to a field goal forcing an incomplete pass on 3rd and 5 from the SJSU 9. Cooper Rothe kicked off the scoring with a 26-yard field goal for the Pokes.
San Jose would go 3 and out over there next three possessions as they were only able to muster one yard combined on those possessions. A combination of not many holes opening up, a couple incomplete passes, and a penalty on third down was too much for the Spartans to overcome.
After the first San Jose possession Wyoming took over on their own 34 and continued the success they showed on their last drive, pounding the rock with Nico Evans and Sean Chambers picking up a couple of first downs on runs. They would have to settle for a field goal attempt from 43 yards out after a holding penalty on first down, an incomplete pass and a short gain halted the Cowboys drive. Rothe would miss the 43-yard field goal.
After the second three and out, the Pokes really took control of the game, driving 71 yards on 5 plays converting on 4th and 3 from the Wyoming 36. On the first play of the second quarter, Evans would cap off the drive with a 58 yard TD run. After the third 3 and out for San Jose, Wyoming would fumble twice on the next possession. After picking up a first down, Austin Conway fumbled the ball but he was able to recover it himself. On the next play, Boogie Roberts would force Chambers to fumble and Jonathan Lenard Jr. came up with the recovery.
After the fumble, Tyler Nevins picked up 13 on a run from the San Jose 1 yard line. After an incomplete pass, a false start, and a couple more incomplete passes, Wyoming forced San Jose to punt. The Spartans defense was able to turn it up in the second quarter forcing Wyoming to go three and out on the next couple of possessions but the Spartans were unable to capitalize. San Jose State would also go three and out and in their last possession before the half they picked up a couple of first downs but ultimate the drive ended in a punt.
The Spartans opened the second half with the ball and drove 66 yards on 9 plays. To start the second half, the Spartans got the ball to Josh Oliver, once for 18 yards and then again for 11. With a couple of effective runs and quick passes, the Spartans were able to drive to the Wyoming 9 but had to settle for a field goal from Bryce Crawford to make it 10-3 Wyoming.
Needing to answer the San Jose score, Wyoming continued to go with what was successful in the first half rushing the ball 5 times. On the 5th run, QB Chambers broke free for 64 yards and the score. Unfortunately for the Spartans, they were only able to answer with the first down from Josh Love to Tre Hartley for 15 yards and then were forced to punt.
The Pokes took over and chewed 5 minutes off the clock with there next drive but the Spartans defense held on 4th-and-1. After the stop, Jesse Osuna was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct forcing the Spartans to start from their own 37. For the second drive in a row, the Spartans went to Josh Oliver and this time for 26 yards. Nevins would also pick up a first down after a couple of runs. The crucial play on this drive was a 3rd down completion for 14 yards. San Jose would later be forced to a 4th and 2 but Antonio Hull broke up Josh Love’s pass and Wyoming would take over.
The Cowboys trying to burn some clock coughed the ball up on the 4th play of the drive, giving San Jose hope. The Spartans took over and converted on 3rd and 4 and then the 5th play of the drive got their first touchdown. Once again this week, Tre Walker made an amazing catch in the end zone. The PAT was no good on the next play but in the end, it did not matter much.
When Wyoming needed it most they relied on their rushing attack and were able to drive it down the field on the Spartans on the next possession. A 14 play, 75-yard drive was capped off with a Chambers TD pass to Austin Fort after 13 straight runs by the Pokes. San Jose would take over the final possession but time ran out on them as Wyoming won 24-9.