LAS VEGAS (AP) -- The last time Wyoming won a bowl game, Cowboys'
coach Joe Glenn was still in high school. Most of his players
wouldn't even be born for another 18 years or so.
Wyoming beat Florida State 28-20 in the 1966 Sun Bowl, then lost
in six consecutive bowls.
The 55-year-old Glenn, wrapping up his second year as the
Cowboys' coach, obviously hopes to end that 38-year drought for a
number of reasons. Among other things, he doesn't want to
disappoint a pal of his.
"Tom Frazier, a captain on that team that beat Florida State,
is a friend of mine, still very active in the program," Glenn said
as the Cowboys prepared to face UCLA in Thursday night's Las Vegas
"He sent a very nice letter to our team, hoping that we could
get it back on track. Our kids obviously are very aware of how long
The Cowboys haven't even played in a bowl since a 52-17 drubbing
by Kansas State in the 1993 Copper Bowl.
Glenn said his players realize just getting to a bowl for the
first time in 11 years isn't enough.
"Our goal wasn't just to go to a bowl; our goal is to win a
bowl," Glenn said.
Both Wyoming and UCLA, which have never met in football before,
finished the regular season with 6-5 records.
UCLA, in a bowl for the seventh time in eight years, will make
its second appearance in the Las Vegas Bowl. The Bruins beat New
Mexico 27-13 in the 2002 game.
Last year, they lost 17-9 to Fresno State in the Silicon Valley
Classic to finish their season with five consecutive defeats.
Bruins coach Karl Dorrell, like Glenn, is in his second year on
the job, and he noted the similarities between the teams.
"It's two programs trying to prove themselves, get themselves
in position to get some national recognition," Dorrell said. "We
hope to use this game to keeping moving on, to jump start us for
Neither team was highly regarded heading into this season, with
Wyoming picked to finish last in the Mountain West Conference and
UCLA predicted to finish eighth in the Pac-10. The Cowboys wound up
fourth in their conference and the Bruins tied for fifth in theirs.
"I guess we've had kind of a chip on our shoulder," Glenn
said. "Our guys wanted to prove people wrong."
The game matches teams with productive offenses and defenses
that have struggled at times.
Wyoming quarterback Corey Bramlet threw for 2,232 yards and 10
touchdowns this year, and he's also a threat to run. Jovon
Bouknight had 58 catches for 968 yards and seven TDs, and Ivan
Harrison was the leading rusher with 614 yards on 154 carries.
"We know UCLA is pretty good on the perimeters, so we're
definitely going to have to put a lot of points on the board,"
The Bruins' offense relies on the passing of Drew Olson, who has
thrown for 2,469 yards and 19 touchdowns; and a versatile running
game featuring three different tailbacks.
Manuel White is a big, powerful runner, while Maurice Drew and
Chris Markey both are dangerous in the open field.
Drew, who has been hampered by an ankle injury, has rushed for
881 yards despite missing most of three games.
Flanker Craig Bragg and tight end Marcedes Lewis provide
sure-handed targets for Olson.
The Bruins, coming off well-played 29-24 loss to top-ranked USC,
will be without linebacker Ben Lorier and defensive tackle Eyoseph
Efseaff, who were sent home for violating team rules. Dorrell would