LARAMIE – Sean Chambers has an impressive stiff arm.
Just ask Missouri fans.
Wyoming are hoping Chambers, 6-3, 225 pounds, can finally show their golden arm this season.
Chambers was named to the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award preseason watchlist on Thursday. The material is presented to the nation’s top upper-class quarterback each year.
Due to a red shirt year, three seasons cut short by injury and the frozen 2020 eligibility deadline, Chambers is technically a fourth-year student still trying to hold Levi Williams for the starting position.
“It’s been tough, especially last year, not being able to play football,” Chambers said after recent fall camp training. “But I’m happy and healthy and grateful to be able to play again.”
In 13 starts, Chambers led the Cowboys to a 9-4 record passing for 1,187 yards and 10 touchdowns and rushing for 894 yards and 10 scores.
In the third snap of the 2020 campaign, Chambers suffered a season-ending leg injury.
Williams started the remainder of the season cut off playing with an injury to his pitcher’s shoulder. The third-year rookie had 1,220 yards and four touchdowns and rushed for 281 yards and eight touchdowns.
UW head coach Craig Bohl said none of the candidates stood out in Thursday’s practice.
“I thought we were probably a little too sloppy with the two-quarterback football with the first two groups,” Bohl said.
Saturday’s scrum will be crucial in the quarterback’s assessment before the Cowboys focus on the Sept. 4 opener against Montana State at War Memorial Stadium.
Bohl sang the praises of true first-year wide receiver Jaylen Sargent all week. Importing Logan, Utah, should help Chambers and / or Williams improve the passing game, which has been an area of importance under first-year offensive coordinator Tim Polasek.
“There’s some natural catcher stuff out there when it comes to a natural catcher,” Polasek said of Sargent. “He has the ability to play fast, especially when we’re in the repetitions. The key with Jaylen is being able to take the opportunity this week to prove to ourselves, “Hey, there’s a percentage of that offense that I fully understand.”
Bohl said fans should expect to see Sargent on the pitch this season.
Another member of the 2021 recruiting class with a chance to make an immediate impact is running back DQ James.
The coaching staff already know what veterans Xazavian Valladay and Trey Smith are capable of, so they give James 5-7, 180 pounds a healthy share of training reps.
“As we go into the camp, there are certain pieces that we’re looking at that we’re going to introduce a certain guy to,” Bohl said. “DQ has exceptional capabilities. He can run really fast, so you’ll see us do that with DQ.
New shine for the boot
The Bronze Boot, the traveling trophy UW and Colorado State have been fighting for since 1968, looked his age when the Rams grabbed him on the sidelines after beating the Cowboys last season in the Canvas Stadium.
Thus, the competing programs have agreed to restore the Boot during the offseason.
CSU volunteer historian John Hirn helped identify The Bronzery in Escondido, Calif., The only remaining foundry in the United States that could tan a material object, as a venture to double the boot so that it still lasts more than 50 seasons.
“I know both schools are extremely proud and passionate about the rivalry we share, and The Bronze Boot has been a symbol of this rivalry since 1968,” UW Director of Athletics Tom Burman said in a statement. “More than that, it truly is one of the greatest traveling trophies of all college sports. We are delighted that fans will see the boot restored this coming season.
UW, who runs the Boot 28-24 series, is hosting CSU on November 6 at War Memorial Stadium.
Follow UW beat writer Ryan Thorburn on Twitter @By_RyanThorburn