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Wyoming at Air Force: Subplots we'll watch, including the role of two local players on the Cowboys' defensive line

November 10, 2017 Updated: November 10, 2017 at 4:35 pm
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photo - Wyoming's Dalton Fields, left, and Shiloh Windsor embrace after defeating San Diego State 34-33 during the first half of an NCAA college football game in Laramie, Wyo., Saturday, Nov. 19, 2016. Fields is a Colorado Springs native who attended Pine Creek High School. (AP Photo/Shannon Broderick)
Wyoming's Dalton Fields, left, and Shiloh Windsor embrace after defeating San Diego State 34-33 during the first half of an NCAA college football game in Laramie, Wyo., Saturday, Nov. 19, 2016. Fields is a Colorado Springs native who attended Pine Creek High School. (AP Photo/Shannon Broderick) 

Storylines, keys and trends we'll track as Wyoming visits Air Force on Saturday night.

Pivotal game for Air Force

A loss on Saturday would extinguish Air Force’s already dim hopes for a conference title and would put it in a situation where it would have to win at Boise State and home vs. Utah State in the final two weeks to secure bowl eligibility. In short, this is a game that will demand a sense of urgency. Will Air Force and a fan base asked to show up for a late, chilly game be able to provide that?

Rivalry rekindled?

No players remain from the 2012 season, when then-Wyoming coach Dave Christensen went after Air Force coach Troy Calhoun with a postgame tirade that made for a viral video. With that incident all but faded from memory, this rivalry lost some of the bite it was developing – but not all. “I don’t think there’s any love lost between us two,” Wyoming quarterback Josh Allen said. Perhaps the style or play or another incident will surface to reignite this rivalry.

Local players could factor prominently

Wyoming has grown thin on the defensive line. Ravontae Holt went down with a knee injury last week to make it three defensive tackles missing for the Cowboys. Of course, that could have big ramifications when it comes to stopping Air Force’s running attack. It also means local products Dalton Fields (Pine Creek) and Josiah Hall (Falcon) could see expanded roles on Saturday. Hall has 16 tackles this year, including 1.5 for loss. Fields, who has moved between offense and defense, has two stops.

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