Quick hits from camp: O-line flexes muscles
LARAMIE -- Craig Bohl fielded questions in the north end zone of War Memorial Stadium Wednesday after the Cowboys wrapped up their fifth practice of the fall.
Here's what Wyoming's head coach had to say:
* Right now the depth chart shows back-to-back Mountain West rushing champion, Xazavian Valladay, as the No. 1 kick returner. Is that really what Bohl wants to see? "That's going to be pretty fluid," Bohl said, adding that the team hasn't worked on a ton of kick returns yet. Senior wide receiver Ayden Eberhardt is listed as the top punt returner. "We have some other good candidates that are back there," Bohl added.
* Jordan Bertagnole, the redshirt freshman defensive tackle from Casper, didn't finish practice Wednesday, per Bohl. He suffered a shoulder injury. Read Sunn also left early. The Cowboys' long snapper and back-up linebacker is still dealing with a hamstring injury.
* Bohl was impressed with his veteran offensive line Wednesday afternoon, saying the team practiced putting pressure on the passer. "I think they've got some really good understanding." The last depth chart lists Alonzo Velazquez (LT), Eric Abojei (LG), Keegan Cryder (C), Logan Harris (RG) and Frank Crum (RT) as the five starters.
* Wyoming quarterbacks didn't complete at ton of balls Wednesday. Bohl said that was more about the secondary playing well than it was the signal callers not being on the mark.
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* The Cowboys will scrimmage Friday in Laramie. Bohl said there will be Mountain West and Big XII officials on the field.
* Meetings in 2020 were done on Zoom calls. Thanks to the COVID-19 vaccine, Bohl said, his players are meeting in person, which is leading to more progression on the field. Bohl added that every player in these meetings is 100% vaccinated. "That shows the commitment of our guys," he said. "... We want to have a chance to win the Mountain West Conference in Wyoming. We've got to do everything we can. For us to be able to meet and to be able to function as a football team is going to be imperative."
* Bohl added that his team -- as a whole -- is still around 96% vaccinated. "This is not about a political issue, this is about trying to win football games," he said.
* Clayton Stewart, a transfer from Texas State, was brought in to add some competition to Wyoming's ongoing battle at the punter spot. Ralph Fawaz is currently atop the depth chart, but Bohl wants to see these two push each other throughout camp. "You know, competition brings out the best in a man," he said.
* When Bohl was asked about emerging leadership on this roster he pointed to two guys: Valladay and defensive back Azizi Hearn. "You know, I've just seen just a real maturity, being able to reach out to all the younger players and having really meaningful comments -- not so much comments that are negative -- I mean, encouraging comments," Bohl said.