LARAMIE -- There are very few football coaches who know what Dave Christensen is going through this week.

Connecticut coach Randy Edsall is one of them.

Less than a year removed from the murder of cornerback Jasper Howard, Edsall remembers all too well the emotions that Christensen is facing after losing freshman linebacker Ruben Narcisse in a car accident Monday morning.

Edsall said late Tuesday night that he'll reach out to lend his support to Wyoming's second-year coach.

"I just learned of it [Tuesday] and I'm just very saddened for the football team and the young man's parents," Edsall said. "That's just a tough situation to have to go through and to have to deal with right when your season's taking place.

"I am definitely going to reach out to him and help him and give any advice that could help him out."

Christensen said after Wednesday's practice that he had not yet heard from the Huskies coach as the Cowboys returned to the field for the second time since Narcisse's death.

Once again, the practice served a dual-purpose, doubling as a therapy session.

"I thought the intensity level was good," Christensen said. "I think we're making some progress [in recovering]. Obviously it's going to take time, as they all know and we all know. We just try to do our best to take it one day at a time."

While the two coaches most recently involved in tragic midseason situations haven't spoken, Christensen seems to be utilizing some of the same procedures Edsall did last year.

The Cowboys will play this Saturday, but will do so while honoring Narcisse with a helmet decal. Narcisse's jersey will be worn during every game for the rest of the season. And Narcisse's locker has been kept intact and will be for the next few years.

Similarly, at Connecticut, Howard's locker is still intact as he would have been a senior this year and the Huskies are not using his jersey number again until after he would have graduated.

Edsall said the road to recovery is shaped by the leader's -- in this case the coach's -- personality.

"You don't have time to think," Edsall said. "What you have to do is just go by what you feel is the best way to do things. When you're a leader, you have to do that. When you're the person in charge, you have to be the strong force out in front of everybody.

"It's not in a coach's job description to have to identify a body. But, when the time comes and you're a leader, you have to stand up and be strong and help people get through this."

Unfortunately, Edsall and Christensen know that all too well.

TEXAS WILL HONOR NARCISSE: The Texas Longhorns will honor Narcisse before kickoff on Saturday.

The tribute will include a moment of silence and Narcisse's photograph on Texas' massive scoreboard video screen. The Texas band will also play a song for the Wyoming team.

"They're a class program," Christensen said. "There's no secret why they're successful. They do everything first-class down there."

MEMORIAL SERVICE: UW has scheduled a memorial service for Nacrisse at 5 p.m. on Monday at the UniWyo Sports Complex.

The Ruben Narcisse Memorial Fund has also been set up through the Cowboy Joe Club. Checks may be made payable to Cowboy Joe Club and sent to Ruben Narcisse Memorial Fund, Cowboy Joe Club, University of Wyoming, Dept. 3413, 1000 E. University Ave., Laramie, WY, 82071.

Contact sports reporter Eric Schmoldt at Check out his blog at


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