Border War importance not lost on Glenn

Updated: October 31, 2003, 2:23 PM ET

CHEYENNE, Wyo. -- He has never coached a "Border War" game, but first-year Wyoming coach Joe Glenn knows the importance of rivalries.

At Montana, he was expected to beat Montana State every year. In his stint at Northern Colorado, it was North Dakota State.

Glenn said it's no different with Colorado State -- a team that has beaten the Cowboys four straight times and hasn't lost in Laramie since 1991. The Rams visit War Memorial on Saturday for the 95th annual "Border War."

"These games are of the utmost importance," Glenn said. "They define you and your time at your school. There isn't anything more important as a football player than winning this game."

Wyoming (3-5, 1-2 Mountain West) enters the game in a 5-15 slump dating to last season. It is struggling on offense after racking up points against Utah State and others earlier this season.

The team lost a tough 25-20 game at San Diego State last week, but Glenn said the CSU rivalry has the competitive juices flowing.

"The eyebrows are down on our football team. You can just see it," he said. "There's a real sense that this game is different and it's special."

The Rams (5-3, 2-1) are coming off a bye week after winning three straight behind senior quarterback Bradlee Van Pelt and one of the nation's best wide receivers in sophomore David Anderson.

The Rams are also averaging just under 197 yards rushing per game, something Glenn said Wyoming must stifle if the Cowboys are to win.

"This is a juggernaut coming to town," he said. "We've got to do better offensively and defensively and we've got to hold the run down. ... They'll steamroll your butt if they can and I hope to God that doesn't happen."

Wyoming has the league's second-best passing attack behind senior quarterback Casey Bramlet, who leads the conference in passing efficiency and has completed 166 of 298 passes for 2,055 yards, 17 touchdowns and seven interceptions.

Sophomore wide receiver Jovon Bouknight has been a surprise, racking up 269 yards in kickoff returns and scoring six touchdowns on 34 catches this season. Wyoming's porous defense of last season has also improved.

With no undefeated teams in league play, both coaches said they believe a team could lose two conference games and still win the Mountain West title, making Saturday's matchup all the more important.

"Who knows if it's not for the conference championship?" Glenn said. "If we win, we're 2-2. If they lose, they're 2-2."

This story is from's automated news wire. Wire index