Wyoming Football: Ranking 2022’s Opposing Quarterbacks

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Wyoming Football: Ranking 2022’s Opposing Quarterbacks

Which quarterbacks will be the best that the Wyoming Cowboys face in 2022?

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A few challenges, but nothing impossible.

12. Northern Colorado – Dylan McCaffrey or Jacob Sirmon

The Bears were a mess all the way around in 2021 and the quarterback situation was no exception. Three different players had at least 40 pass attempts and, as a team, UNC completed 58.9% of their throws for 1,845 yards (5.1 yards per attempt), ten touchdowns, and eleven interceptions. McCaffrey, the son of head coach Ed McCaffrey, will have to beat out Sirmon, who’s now on his third stop after stints with Washington and Central Michigan.

11. New Mexico – Miles Kendrick or Isaiah Chavez or CJ Montes

Somehow, the Lobos have had Wyoming’s number over the past couple years, though their quarterback play didn’t exactly torch the Cowboys defense in either 2020 or 2021: New Mexico has managed a combined 204 passing yards in their two recent victories, though that’s buoyed by a 72.4% completion rate.

Will this year be more of the same? That depends on who claims the job. Chavez led the way in both wins, but the Kansas transfer Kendrick has received a lot of helium as the potential QB1.

10. Hawaii – Brayden Schager or Cammon Cooper

The Cowboys let the Paniolo Trophy slip away last season thanks to a scintillating performance from Chevan Cordeiro, but the task of slowing down this year’s Warriors may be more manageable. Schager helped rally Hawaii in their stunning upset over Fresno State, but he also had a down game against Nevada before rebounding in his third start against New Mexico State.

Whether that will be enough to beat out Cooper, a Washington State transfer, remains to be seen. Either way, the Pokes secondary will want to be prepared for a pass-first attack.

9. Tulsa – Davis Brin

Brin’s first year at the helm of the Golden Hurricane offense was an uneven one. Though he completed 59.4% of his throws, averaged 7.9 yards per attempt and had 18 touchdowns, he also had a 3.9% interception rate that included six different games with multiple picks. If he can clean up the mistakes, Tulsa might be hard to stop, but Wyoming might still be good enough to take advantage of that careless play.

8. Illinois – Tommy DeVito

DeVito is a perfect example of how quickly things can change in college football. After pitching in sparingly for Syracuse’s ten-win season back in 2018, he earned the starting job in 2019 and posted a solid campaign even as the Orange fell back in the win column: A 63.2% completion rate, seven yards per attempt, and 17 touchdowns with a 1.5% interception rate. Injuries erased most of his 2020, though, and he’s thrown just 80 passes over the last two years.

If he’s healthy, there’s a good chance he can give the Illini exactly what they want out of a quarterback.

7. Colorado State – Clay Millen

The young gun in Fort Collins certainly has Rams fans excited for the future, but that enthusiasm could be blunted if he can’t improve upon what other Colorado State quarterbacks have managed against the rival Cowboys in recent years. It’s probably not a coincidence that the only Border War clash they’ve won in the past six years, 2020, was the only year in which the Rams had multiple passing touchdowns and zero interceptions in the game.

6. San Jose State – Chevan Cordeiro

Cordeiro’s three games against Wyoming are something of a microcosm for his career to date: His first extended action as Hawaii quarterback came in a victory over the Cowboys back in October 2018, but then he struggled mightly in a 2020 loss before connecting on a number of big plays in a 2021 victory.

Now leading the Spartans, big things will be expected of Cordeiro as San Jose State hopes to rebound from a disappointing campaign.

5. Air Force – Haaziq Daniels

Daniels hasn’t received the kind of attention that some of his Mountain West peers have, but he’s been pretty good in his own right over the pat two seasons and helped the Falcons earn a win over the Cowboys last year with his arm. He completed 7-of-10 passes for 110 yards and a touchdown as the Air Force ground game met heavy resistance, proving that Mike Thiessen’s offense can win in more than one way if circumstances dictate it.

4. Boise State – Hank Bachmeier

Stealing a win against the Broncos has proved elusive in recent years and Bachmeier’s play has been a big reason why. He missed Boise State’s three-point win over the Cowboys in 2019, but he’s completed 68.9% of his passes for 406 yards and two touchdowns in their last two wins over Wyoming. If he can stay protected, Bachmeier has the talent to make the Cowboys miserable for a third straight season.

3. BYU – Jaren Hall

When healthy last year, Hall was one of the best quarterbacks in the Group of 5. He threw for 2,583 yards at 8.7 yards per attempt, added 307 rushing yards on the ground, and accounted for 23 touchdowns against five interceptions. If only replacing first-round NFL Draft picks always looked that easy.

2. Utah State – Logan Bonner

Bonner straight up did not have a good time trying to solve the Cowboys defense last year, putting up one of his worst games of the year (19-of-40, 181 yards, two touchdowns) in a Wyoming rout. For the most part, however, he thrived when the Aggies kept him on his feet and set a single-season program record with 36 passing touchdowns, and he’ll be motivated to set things right in the rematch.

1. Fresno State – Jake Haener

Like Bonner, as good as Haener has been over the past two seasons, Wyoming seems to be the one team that figured out how to slow him down. He completed just 15-of-28 passes for 96 yards and two touchdowns in last year’s defensive fist fight, though it’ll be a tough ask to do it two years in a row.

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Story originally appeared on Mountain West Wire