Former Missouri assistant coach looks to continue improvement of Wyoming football team

Thursday, April 22, 2010 | 12:00 a.m. CDT

CHEYENNE, Wyo. — Wyoming coach Dave Christensen is making sure the Cowboys aren't satisfied with last year's surprising bowl appearance and win.

"I think our kids understand that we have a lot work to get done here," Christensen said Wednesday. "We try to focus on the process and not on the big picture. Nothing is going to change from what it was the day I got here, that we focus on the process of daily improvement and making sure that each and every day that we become a better team than we were the day before."

Since guiding Wyoming to a 7-6 record and beating Fresno State in overtime in the New Mexico Bowl in his first season as coach, Christensen, a one-time offensive coordinator at Missouri, has been busy building and improving his team.

Christensen said Wyoming completed a productive spring practice last weekend.

"We've been able to increase our team speed drastically from a year ago. We made a change defensively from a three-man front to a four-man front. I thought our players adapted well to that," he said. "Our offense continued to make improvements, gained depth at the receiving position and offensive line positions."

Special teams also is improving, he said.

Sophomore quarterback Austyn Carta-Samuels, who was named freshman of the year in the Mountain West Conference last season, is making strides on improving his movement in the pocket, decision-making and protecting the football, Christensen said.

"I think he's continuing to grow in those areas and doing the things that you need from the quarterback position to have a chance to be successful," he said.

Christensen also has switched from a 3-4 defensive scheme to the more traditional 4-3.

As a result Wyoming will feature much faster linebackers, he said.

The goal for next season is to play in another bowl game.

"When you can start going to bowl games and do it back to back to back, then I think what it shows is your program is on the rise and you're starting to be successful and to run a successful program," Christensen said.


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