Flack Friday: Strap Up and Stripe Out

Flack Friday: Strap Up and Stripe Out

UW Photo.

I began working at SweetwaterNOW a year ago today. I’ve enjoyed every second I’ve had being out and about in Sweetwater County. I’ve grown, discovered and learned much from my role as a member of the media. Throughout the last year, I’ve witnessed the laughs, tears, cheers and frustrations that sports bring. Thank you for allowing me to be a part of Sweetwater County sports.

Much like the beginning of a new “year” for me, athletes around the state are ready to strap up and compete across various sports. The majority of competitions begin today and continue throughout the weekend.

If you’ve been a loyal reader of this column at any point in the last year, I applaud you first and foremost. Secondly, you can expect continued original content and the most intriguing coverage and opinion on athletics in our community. Flack Friday will continue each and every Friday. I invite you to be a part of the column. With that said, strap up, hang on, and welcome back to another great sports season!

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Wyoming vs Missouri

Wyoming Cowboy football is set to kickoff the 2019 season in historic fashion against the Missouri Tigers on Saturday, August 31. The Pokes will have a chance at revenge against the visiting SEC team which beat Wyoming in 2018 by a score of 40-13.

Mizzou comes in as the second SEC team to ever play in Laramie. Wyoming has certainly expedited the hype surrounding the game with the first-ever planned “Stripe Out” game where fans have been asked to dress in either brown or gold depending on their section in the stadium to create a stripe colored pattern in the stands of War Memorial Stadium.

Not only does this game carry a lot of excitement and buzz with a quality opponent visiting War Memorial, but Saturday’s home opener against Mizzou has a handful of headlines that we should keep an eye on.

Here are a few headlines to look out for against Missouri:

Bohl’s 200th game as a head coach

Craig Bohl will put on his headset for his 200th game as a head coach against the Tigers on Saturday evening. The season opener will be his 100th game as a collegiate head coach as he enters into his sixth year as the Cowboys’ head coach with a 28-35 record.

I propose that, “In Bohl We Trust.” Bohl’s 200th game isn’t about his achievements. Rather, it’s a reminder to every Wyoming fan that this season may be more about trusting Bohl’s process. He’s 200 games into his head coaching career. He knows what’s best for the program. How often do we forget that he produced Carson Wentz and Josh Allen as a collegiate coach? I’m suggesting that we allow Saturday’s game to be more about trusting Bohl no matter the outcome. Experience coupled with trust is powerful.

Pokes’ defense is still top notch

I’m not entirely sure why everyone in the national media disregards Wyoming’s defense, but the Cowboys still maintain a hard-nosed defense that will once again show up to play this season. In fact, if there’s one mistake Mizzou could make coming into this game, it would be to overlook this defense.

Last year the Tigers struggled to produce much offensively in the first half against the Cowboys. Despite Wyoming losing several starters to the NFL, plenty of talent fills those holes along with a solid linebacker core in Logan Wilson and Cassh Maluia.

Mizzou’s transfer quarterback, Kelly Bryant, will face a solid defense come kickoff. I believe we’ll learn a lot about Bryant and this Wyoming defense based on what transpires on the field.

Offensive line will tell the story of this season

I feel like this is pretty obvious, but as much as the position is overlooked, the offensive line is going to be telling of what we can expect this season.

If you don’t believe me, Bohl told me before the start of fall camp, he’ll have a “pretty good idea” where this football team is at by “halftime” against Mizzou.

I don’t claim to be a football guru, but the one sure way you can judge where a football team is going to be based off of a single half of a game only points to the offensive line. Certainly that was a concern heading into fall camp, and injuries did occur. If I’m honest, I don’t know what to expect from the offensive line. I suppose that’s the biggest thing I’ll be keeping an eye on Saturday night.

It’s a story that will soon be written.

Brayden is a sports and community reporter for SweetwaterNOW. His column, Flack Friday, will be posted every Friday. You can submit comments, questions or ideas regarding the column to brayden@sweetwaternow.com.