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Cowboys prepare for No. 18 Nebraska

Aug 28, 2013 - From staff reports

The long wait for college football fans ends this week as the 2013 college football season will kick off. For the Wyoming Cowboys, the season will open against 18th-ranked Nebraska in Lincoln, Neb., on Saturday, Aug. 31.

Saturday's season opener is scheduled to kick at 6 p.m., Mountain Time (7 p.m., Central Time) from Nebraska's Memorial Stadium.

Saturday's game will feature two of the nation's top quarterbacks, as Wyoming junior Brett Smith and Nebraska senior Taylor Martinez were both selected to the 2013 Manning Award Watch List.

Smith ranked: fifth in the nation in 2012 in points responsible for (20.2 points per game), 11th in passing efficiency (157.70 rating), and No. 16 in total offense (308.5 yards per game). Martinez is among the NCAA's active career leaders in three different categories.

He ranks No. 1 among current Football Bowl Subdivision players in career rushing yards (2,858), is No. 3 in career total offense (9,449 yards) and ranks No. 9 in career passing yards among current FBS players (6,591 yards).

Smith enters the 2013 season having not thrown an interception in his last 174 pass attempts, dating back to Oct. 1, 2012.

Smith is tied with Central Florida's Blake Bortles for the longest current streak entering the 2013 season.

Smith is chasing former Wyoming quarterback Casey Bramlet for the all-time Mountain West record of 178 pass attempts without throwing an interception.

Wyoming and Nebraska will be meeting for the seventh time in history. The Cowboys will be looking for their first win in the series.

UW won three of its last four to end the 2012 season. The last time UW won four out of five games was in the middle of the 2011 season. Wyoming won at home vs. UNLV, on the road at San Diego State, lost at home to TCU, won at Air Force and defeated New Mexico at home in 2011.

The Huskers enter this season ranked No. 18 in both the Associated Press media poll and USA Today Coaches poll.

Of course you can't talk about the Wyoming-Nebraska series without mentioning legendary college football coach Bob Devaney.

Devaney was head coach at Wyoming from 1957-61. He is still the winningest coach in Wyoming history in terms of winning percentage. He won 75 percent of his games at Wyoming, posting a 35-10-5 record in five seasons. He led Wyoming to four conference titles -- two Skyline Conference outright championships in 1958 and '59 and two co-championships in 1960 and '61.

His 1958 squad went 8-3 and won the Sun Bowl. In 1959, the Cowboys compiled a 9-1 record and ended the season ranked No. 16 in the final Associated Press poll. The 1960 Cowboy team posted an 8-2 record, and in 1961 the Pokes were 6-1-2 and concluded the year ranked No. 17 in the final United Press International poll.

Devaney took over as head coach at Nebraska in 1962. For the next 11 years, Devaney led the Cornhuskers to eight Big Eight Conference titles, a 101-20-2 (.829) record, and back-to-back national championships in 1970 and '71. After the 1972 season, Devaney retired with a 136-30-7 (.806) record as a head coach, making him the winningest active coach in the nation at the time.

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