Magic Memories: Cowboys Win Over Georgia State in Arizona Bowl Saturday Replay on Cowboy Network

Tracy Ringolsby

From the office of Tim Harkins/Wyoming Athletic Department

Laramie – A season best 524 yards of total offense by the Wyoming Cowboys combined with a stifling Poke defense that gave up only 17 points to Georgia State helped Wyoming record a 38-17 win in the NOVA Home Loans Arizona Bowl last Dec. 31. Wyoming's 38 points were the most the Cowboys have scored in a bowl game.

Cowboy football fans can re-live the 2019 win in the Arizona Bowl this Saturday, when the radio call of the game will be re-broadcast on Cowboy Sports Network (CSN) affiliate stations. Fans unable to access the radio re-broadcasts on a Cowboy Sports Network affiliate may listen to the broadcast by clicking on the link that accompanies this story on the Wyoming Football page at GoWyo.com.

The Arizona Bowl began with Georgia State scoring first, driving 75 yards in six plays on its first possession and scoring on a four-yard touchdown run by quarterback Dan Ellington. 

Wyoming responded with a score of its own on the Cowboys' first possession. The Pokes capped off an 11-play, 39-yard drive with a career long 53-yard field goal from senior place-kicker to make the score 7-3. 

The Wyoming defense did not allow the Panthers another score in the first quarter, while the UW offense scored two touchdowns on an 18-yard pass from true freshman quarterback to senior wide receiver and an eight-yard TD pass from Williams to sophomore running back . The score at the end of the first quarter was 17-7 in favor of the Pokes.

In the second quarter, Georgia State once again scored on its first possession of the period, concluding a 13-play, 57-yard drive with a 25-yard field goal by place-kicker Brandon Wright. Late in the second quarter, Williams would throw his third TD pass of the game -- a 51-yarder to junior wide receiver Ayden Eberhardt, who made a spectacular run after the catch. The first half ended with UW leading 24-10.

Wyoming extend its lead on a five-play possession covering 86 yards in the third quarter. The big play of the drive was a 63-yard pass play from Williams to Valladay down to the Georgia State one-yard line. Valladay carried the ball into the end zone on the next play to build a 31-10 lead for the Cowboys. But that 21-point lead would only last for 35 seconds. 

The Panthers' Ellington completed a pass of 31 yards on first down followed by a completion of 44 yards for a touchdown on the second play of the drive to cut the Wyoming lead to 31-17. That would be the final score of the game for Georgia State.

 Wyoming would add one more third quarter touchdown on a four-play, 74-yard drive that featured a 62-yard run by Valladay and a six-yard TD run by Williams to give the Cowboys 38 points -- the most it had ever scored in a bowl game. Neither team could find the end zone in the fourth quarter and Wyoming had captured its second consecutive bowl victory, this one by a final score of 38-17.

The offensive attack for the Cowboys featured a balance of rushing and passing. Wyoming ran for 290 yards and threw for 234. UW's defense in addition to holding Georgia State to only 17 points saw First Team All-Conference seniors and record 11 and seven tackles, respectively, to lead the Pokes. Halliburton also intercepted a pass in the first quarter that would later lead to a Wyoming touchdown.

The Cowboy rushing attack was led by another MW First Team All-Conference player in Valladay, who ran for 204 yards and one touchdown. Valladay also led all Cowboy receivers with three receptions for 91 yards, including a long reception of 63 yards that set up his rushing TD. The sophomore would add an eight-yard touchdown reception in the game. He would end the day with 295 all-purpose yards.

Halliburton was named the NOVA Home Loans Defensive Player of the Game, and Valladay was named the Offensive Player of the Game. At the conclusion of the college bowl season, Valladay's performance also earned him a spot on the Associated Press All-Bowl Team. He was one of only three running backs named to the team, joining Penn State's Journey Brown and Florida's Lamical Perine.

True freshman quarterback Williams made his first career start in the game. He completed 11 of 26 passes on the day for 234 yards, three touchdowns and one interception. He also ran for 53 yards and another score and accounted for 287 yards of total offense.

Saturday's re-broadcast will feature a pre-game segment with the Cowboy Sports Network's radio broadcast team of Dave Walsh and reminiscing about the game followed by the original broadcast of the game and the original postgame interviews conducted the day of the game. Walsh and McKinney will also have some closing comments at the end of each broadcast.

This Saturday's re-broadcast will be the final Cowboy Classic of the fall.

The Cowboys' will kick off the 2020 college football season on Saturday, Oct. 24 live from Reno, Nev. The Cowboy Sports Network will be broadcasting the 2020 season opener versus the Nevada Wolf Pack over the CSN affiliate stations beginning one and a half hours before kickoff. Next Saturday's kickoff from Reno will be at 5 p.m., Mountain Time and the pregame show will begin at 3:30 p.m., M.T.

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