LARAMIE -- Thursday marked the completion of the first week of Fall Camp for the University of Wyoming football team. Thursday morning’s practice was conducted in perfect conditions, with cloud cover providing a very comfortable environment in the upper 60s as the Cowboys practiced in War Memorial Stadium for the first time this week, according to a press release.
After practicing in full pads for the first time on Wednesday, the Cowboys practiced in spiders on Thursday, focusing more on technique rather than the more physical style of Wednesday’s practice session.
Head coach Craig Bohl continued to be impressed with the play of quarterbacks Sean Chambers and Tyler Vander Waal. Bohl also singled out a number of receivers who caught his eye on Thursday.
We didn’t go in full pads today. We backed off that a little bit,” said Bohl. “But I thought we really got some good work done. We worked in the red zone. We opened up the playbook a little bit more. I thought Sean executed things better, certainly he is much further along than where he was last year. Tyler is doing some good things there, as well.
“I thought our receivers caught the ball well in today’s practice. Rocket (Ismail Jr.) particularly had a good day out there. I think you are seeing Rocket doing good things in terms of his explosion. Ayden Eberhardt is a guy I see making a lot of plays and a lot of catches. And as I’ve said before, Treyton Welch is doing some good things at the tight end position.
“Gunner (Gentry) made a couple really good catches in the red zone today. He’s got good size, good presence. He tracks the ball well. Certainly, his catch radius is excellent. He’s a big strong guy. What’s going to be important for him to do is assimilate a little bit more into our offense and make sure he is running his routes with a little bit more confidence, but he is certainly making good strides.”
Bohl reserved judgment on the play of his offensive and defensive lines in Thursday’s sixth practice of Fall Camp, mainly due to the nature of the practice. “It is pretty tough to evalute offensive and defensive linemen when you’re not in full pads, other than to evaluate whether they are completing their assignments properly,” Bohl said.
With one week of four weeks of preparation now in the books leading up to the season opener versus Missouri, Bohl was asked where he thought his 2019 football team was at as a whole.
“I think we’re about where I thought we’d be at this stage of camp,” said Bohl. “We are still in the process of installing (offense, defense and special teams). We are a little bit healthier than what we’ve been in the past. There comes a time where need to put your foot down on the gas pedal and amp things up and we’re doing that now.
“In the kicking game, Cooper (Rothe) is probably further along that what I thought. We’re maybe a little bit behind in the punting game, but we are looking to get caught up there.
“We’re certainly not where we need to be to start the season, but we’re making good progress.”
The head coach did provide an update on the status of two players who were unable to complete practices earlier this week. Those two players being sophomore offensive guard Eric Abojei and redshirt freshman nose tackle Mario Mora.
“Eric is fine. He was back out there today, and Mario was back out there at full speed too,” Bohl said. “We’re pretty much at full strength right now.”
The Cowboys will return to practice at 8:35 a.m. Friday.