Wyoming Cowboys basketball

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Wyoming Cowboys
2015–16 Wyoming Cowboys basketball team
Wyoming Cowboys athletic logo
University University of Wyoming
Conference Mountain West
Location Laramie, WY
Head coach Larry Shyatt (6th year)
Arena Arena-Auditorium
(Capacity: 11,612)
Nickname Cowboys
Colors

Brown and Gold

            
Uniforms
Kit body thinsidesonwhite.png
Home jersey
Kit shorts blanksides2.png
Team colours
Home
Kit body thingoldsides.png
Away jersey
Kit shorts thingoldsides.png
Team colours
Away
Pre-tournament Helms champions
1934
NCAA Tournament champions
1943
NCAA Tournament Final Four
1943
NCAA Tournament Elite Eight
1941, 1943, 1947, 1949, 1952
NCAA Tournament Sweet Sixteen
1952, 1953, 1967, 1987
NCAA Tournament Round of 32
1981, 1982, 1987, 2002
NCAA Tournament appearances
1941, 1943, 1947, 1948, 1949, 1952, 1953, 1958, 1967, 1981, 1982, 1987, 1988, 2002, 2015
Conference tournament champions
1987, 1988, 2015
Conference regular season champions
1928, 1931, 1932, 1933, 1934, 1936, 1941, 1943, 1946, 1947, 1949, 1952, 1953, 1958, 1967, 1969, 1981, 1982, 1986, 2001, 2002

The University of Wyoming men's basketball program, which competes in the Mountain West Conference, has a lengthy tradition dating back to 1905. Cowboys fans can claim something that few other teams' fans can: an NCAA Championship, won in 1943 under Hall of Fame coach Everett Shelton and behind star guard Ken Sailors, who pioneered the jump shot that is now the standard in basketball. Wyoming has made a total of 15 appearances in the NCAA Tournament, though the closest it has come to the lofty heights of the 1943 team was a Sweet 16 appearance in 1987. Since the Mountain West was formed in 1999, Wyoming has won two conference titles, including an outright championship in 2002. Prior to that, Wyoming won five championships in the Western Athletic Conference, eight championships in the Skyline Conference, and one championship in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference.

History[edit]

The Wyoming basketball program began in 1904 when a group known as the "Laramie Town Team" challenged a team from the university to a basketball game; Wyoming won that game by a score of 17–5.[1] The team became a powerhouse in the 1930s under coach Willard "Dutch" Witte, who led the 1934 Cowboy team to a 26–3 record. In those days before the NCAA Tournament had begun, college basketball's national champion was determined by a set of poll voters for the Helms Foundation, which selected Wyoming as its national champion. Witte coached a total of nine seasons in Laramie and compiled a 134–51 record.

After Witte stepped down in 1939, Everett Shelton took over the team and went on to become the winningest coach in Wyoming history in his 19 years in Laramie. Although Shelton went just 6–10 in his first season, his teams would win 20 or more games seven times during his career. In 1943, the Cowboys went 31–2 and won the NCAA Tournament. That team was led by Ken Sailors, who scored 16 points in the championship game victory over Georgetown on his way to being named the tournament's Most Outstanding Player. In addition, Sailors was named college basketball's Player of the Year in 1943 and again in 1946 after returning from fighting in World War II. In all, the Cowboys made eight NCAA tournament appearances under Shelton, though they only won one game aside from the three-game run in 1943.

After Shelton retired in 1959, Wyoming basketball lay dormant for some time. Including Shelton's last four campaigns as head coach, the Cowboys endured nine consecutive losing seasons from 1956 to 1964. Coach Bill Strannigan, who succeeded Shelton, had just six winning seasons in fourteen years as head coach and made one NCAA Tournament appearance in 1967 in which the Cowboys were handed a lopsided loss at the hands of eventual national champion UCLA and its All-American center Lew Alcindor, who later changed his name to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Again from 1971 through 1978, the Cowboys had one winning season, a 17–10 campaign under Don DeVoe in 1976–77.

In 1978, Jim Brandenburg became the Cowboys' head coach and the program experienced a resurgence. In his nine seasons, Wyoming did not have a single losing season and made four NCAA Tournament appearances. In 1981, the Cowboys were 24–6 and reached the second round of the NCAA Tournament. In addition to being the Cowboys' first tournament appearance since 1967, it was their first 20-win season since 1952–53 and first NCAA Tournament victory since 1952. After guiding the Cowboys to the Sweet 16 in 1987, however, Brandenburg left the Cowboys to become the coach at conference rival San Diego State.[2] He was replaced by Benny Dees, who went 26–6 in his first year with the Cowboys and returned them to the NCAA Tournament where they lost in the first round of the 1988 NCAAs to Loyola-Marymount.

Larry Shyatt went 19–9 in 1997–98, his only season in Laramie before becoming the head coach at Clemson University. After his departure, Steve McClain took over the head coaching job and had three consecutive 20-win seasons from 2001 to 2003, including conference titles in 2001 and 2002 and an NCAA Tournament appearance in 2002. On March 22, 2007, Wyoming hired former Portland State head coach Heath Schroyer to become its next head coach. Shyatt was hired yet again as Wyoming's head coach after the 2010–11 season ended due to the firing of Heath Schroyer.[3] The 2010–11 team's top two scorers left the program[4] afterwards, with Desmar Jackson and Amath M'Baye transferring to Southern Illinois University[5] and the University of Oklahoma,[6] respectively.

Head coaching records[edit]

Coach Tenure Seasons Record Win Pct.
W. Yates 1904–1906 2 4–2 .667
Lt. Coburn 1906–1908 2 5–7 .417
Elmer Hoefer 1908–1909 1 3–3 .500
Harold I. Dean 1909–1912 3 9–13 .409
Leon Exelby 1912–1913 1 2–5 .286
Ralph Thacker 1913–1915 2 3–7 .300
John J. Corbett 1915–1924 9 37–41 .474
Stewart Clark 1924–1928 4 43–24 .642
George McLaren 1928–1930 2 28–10 .737
Willard Witte 1930–1939 9 134–51 .724
Everett Shelton 1939–1959 20 328–201 .620
Bill Strannigan 1959–1973 14 179–187 .489
George Radovich 1973–1976 3 24–55 .304
Don DeVoe 1976–1978 2 29–25 .537
Jim Brandenburg 1978–1987 9 176–97 .645
Benny Dees 1987–1993 6 104–77 .575
Joby Wright 1993–1997 4 53–60 .469
Larry Shyatt 1997–1998 1 19–9 .679
Steve McClain 1998–2007 9 157–115 .577
Heath Schroyer 2007–2011 4 49–68 .419
Larry Shyatt 2011–present 5 96-64 .600
Totals 20 coaches 112 seasons 1482–1121 .569

Postseason[edit]

NCAA tournament results[edit]

The Cowboys have appeared in the NCAA Tournament 15 times. Their combined record is 9–20. They were National Champions in 1943.

Year Seed Round Opponent Results
1941 Elite Eight
Regional 3rd Place Game
Arkansas
Creighton
L 40–52
L 44–45
1943 Elite Eight
Final Four
National Championship Game
Oklahoma
Texas
Georgetown
W 55–50
W 58–54
W 46–34
1947 Elite Eight
Regional 3rd Place Game
Texas
Oregon State
L 40–42
L 46–63
1948 Elite Eight
Regional 3rd Place Game
Kansas State
Washington
L 48–58
L 47–57
1949 Elite Eight
Regional 3rd Place Game
Oklahoma A&M
Arkansas
L 39–40
L 48–61
1952 Sweet Sixteen
Elite Eight
Oklahoma City
Santa Clara
W 54–48
L 53–56
1953 Sweet Sixteen
Regional 3rd Place Game
Santa Clara
Seattle
L 52–67
L 64–80
1958 Round of 24 Seattle L 51–88
1967 Sweet Sixteen
Regional 3rd Place Game
UCLA
Texas Western
L 60–109
L 67–69
1981 #5 Round of 48
Round of 32
#12 Howard
#4 Illinois
W 78–43
L 65–67
1982 #8 Round of 48
Round of 32
#9 USC
#1 Georgetown
W 61–58
L 43–51
1987 #12 Round of 64
Round of 32
Sweet Sixteen
#5 Virginia
#4 UCLA
#1 UNLV
W 64–60
W 78–68
L 78–92
1988 #7 Round of 64 #10 Loyola Marymount L 115–119
2002 #11 Round of 64
Round of 32
#6 Gonzaga
#3 Arizona
W 73–66
L 60–68
2015 #12 Round of 64 #5 Northern Iowa L 54–71

NIT results[edit]

The Cowboys have appeared in the National Invitation Tournament (NIT) eight times. Their combined record is 7–8.

Year Round Opponent Result
1968 First Round Villanova L 66–77
1969 First Round Army L 49–51
1986 First Round
Second Round
Quarterfinals
Semifinals
Championship Game
Texas A&M
Loyola Marymount
Clemson
Florida
Ohio State
W 79–70
W 99–90
W 62–57
W 67–58
L 63–73
1991 First Round
Second Round
Butler
Colorado
W 63–61
L 75–83
1998 First Round Gonzaga L 55–69
1999 First Round
Second Round
USC
Oregon
W 81–77
L 72–93
2001 First Round Pepperdine L 69–72
2003 First Round
Second Round
Eastern Washington
North Carolina
W 78–71
L 74–90

CBI results[edit]

The Cowboys have appeared in the College Basketball Invitational (CBI) four times. Their combined record is 2–4.

Year Round Opponent Result
2009 First Round Northeastern L 62–64
2012 First Round
Quarterfinals
North Dakota State
Washington State
W 76–75
L 41–61
2013 First Round
Quarterfinals
Lehigh
Western Michigan
W 67–66
L 67–75 OT
2014 First Round Texas A&M L 43–59

National Campus Basketball Tournament results[edit]

The Cowboys appeared in the only National Campus Basketball Tournament. Their record is 1–2.[7]

Year Round Opponent Result
1951 Quarterfinals
Semifinals
3rd Place Game
Duquesne
Bradley
Utah
W 78–61
L 63–77
L 52–55

Arena[edit]

Main article: Arena-Auditorium

The Arena-Auditorium, which seats 11,612, serves as the home court for the Cowboy basketball team. Since its opening in 1982, the Cowboys have enjoyed a strong homecourt advantage at the AA.

Wyoming's first home court was a small, red brick building known as the "Little Red Gym." That was followed by the Half Acre Gym, which served as the Cowboys' home from 1925 to 1951 and seated just over 4,000; the Cowboys had a record of 222-44 in the building. The Cowboys moved into War Memorial Fieldhouse in 1951 and remained there until the Arena-Auditorium opened in 1982.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "The Wyoming Way" (PDF). Grfx.cstv.com. Retrieved 2015-07-01. 
  2. ^ "SPORTS PEOPLE - Wyoming Coach Exits". The New York Times. 1987-03-25. Retrieved 2015-07-01. 
  3. ^ "Columns - CBSSports.com". Sportsline.com. 2015-06-26. Retrieved 2015-07-01. 
  4. ^ "Wyoming Cowboys' Desmar Jackson, Amath M'Baye won't return to team next season". Sports.espn.go.com. 2015-01-07. Retrieved 2015-07-01. 
  5. ^ "Wyoming guard Desmar Jackson transfers to Southern Illinois - Southern Illinois University Official Athletic Site". Siusalukis.com. 2011-04-13. Retrieved 2015-07-01. 
  6. ^ "Wyoming F Amath M'Baye Transferring to Oklahoma". Cowboyaltitude.com. 2011-04-18. Retrieved 2015-07-01. 
  7. ^ "National Campus Tournament 1951". Luckyshow.org. Retrieved 2015-07-01. 

External links[edit]