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Wyoming will play BYU in the 2016 Poinsettia Bowl

Wyoming will make their return to the postseason in a renewal of the most intense unofficial rivalry

NCAA Football: Mountain West Championship-San Diego State at Wyoming Troy Babbitt-USA TODAY Sports

After finishing off a surprising 8-5 season, Wyoming will reignite an old WAC rivalry in the Poinsettia Bowl.

These two programs have 77 games, 88 years of history, and one racially and religiously charged event to tie them together. Everyone thought the 2010 game would be the last iteration of BYU-Wyoming. Guess again.

Neither fanbase would be caught dead calling this a rivalry: Wyoming fans believe that Colorado State is their only rival, and BYU fans argue that they’ve won all but seven games since 1970.

No matter how you spin it, these two programs have a deep-seeded dislike for each other, and the addition of the postseason is going to make this game so much better.

Let’s get to the matchup.


Coming off a disappointing 2-10 season, the Cowboys turned their misfortune around. They finished the year with an 8-5 record and as Mountain Division Champions.

Wyoming was 2-2 coming into conference play. They then rattled off six straight wins, most notably against then-undefeated Air Force, Boise State (who was ranked 13th in the country), and Colorado State.

A win against then-ranked San Diego State sandwiched between losses to UNLV and New Mexico finished off the regular season.

Wyoming ended the season with a berth to the Mountain West Championship, which they lost to San Diego State, 27-24. It was their only home loss of the year.


BYU finished their season with a solid 8-4 record, the best among the Independents.

This season was pockmarked by “what if’s” since their four losses were by a combined margin of eight points.

Those four losses came to Boise State, Utah, UCLA, and West Virginia.

Notable wins during the season included a 28-10 victory over in-state rival Utah State, a 51-9 shellacking of UMass, a 55-53 shootout against Toledo, and a 31-14 victory over a reeling Michigan State team.

Date and time: Dec. 21, 9 p.m. ET


Streaming: WatchESPN

Location: San Diego, CA

Stadium: Qualcomm Stadium