For fans of the sport, there’s just something about football. Whether you’re on the field, in the stadium, watching from your couch or a nearby bar, you’re part of the game. You share your team’s success; you feel their failures. You cheer on their touchdowns, and you bemoan every fumble.This is especially true of college football. And if you’ve spent any time in Wyoming, you’ve heard a thing or two about the Wyoming Cowboys.
College football, like anywhere, is a bedrock sport here. Wyoming fans brave the biting Wyoming wind, snow, sleet or rain to support our team. We’ll plan our vacation days around home games. We’ll slap that symbolic steamboat on every t-shirt and car window we can manage. And we’ll cheer for our team with vigor.
This week, Wyoming fans have something historical to cheer for.
University of Wyoming quarterback and golden boy, Josh Allen, is expected to be a first-round NFL draft pick this Thursday night, which hasn’t happened since 1976. He’s a household name in Wyoming. And soon, he could be a household name nationwide. He’s expected to be drafted higher than 14th overall, which is a first in UW history.
Allen’s time as the Cowboy’s quarterback has earned him high marks within the football community. And at the NFL Combine last month, he stood out for his size and his potential. Despite less-than-stellar stats, he’s consistently been among top choices in mock drafts.
Joining him in potential football fame is Wyoming-born Taven Bryan, who played for the Natrona County Mustangs through high school before going on to play defensive tackle at the University of Florida. Like Allen, Bryan is looking like a top choice in the first-round. Unlike Allen, he’s kept a relatively low profile among football fans. In Wyoming, however, he’ll soon represent a historical first.
Never before has Wyoming sent both a collegiate and a high school player to the first round of the NFL draft. And there hasn’t been a Wyoming-born first-rounder for close to two decades.
We’ve watched Allen on the field at War Memorial Stadium all season. We’ve followed their progress at the Combine. We’ve cheered every touchdown. We’ve cursed every fumble. We’ve felt their failures; and now we’ll share their success.
Good job to them both; and good luck.