Wind River football coach Cullen Noffsinger will step down as the school’s head football coach after four seasons, Noffsinger said via email to wyoming-football.com last week.

The Cougars’ new coach will be Mykah Trujillo, Wind River AD Justin Walker said via email Tuesday.

Trujillo is an alumnus of Lander High School and was an all-state football player for the Tigers in 2003. He teaches elementary school in Lander and previously coached Lander’s middle school teams.

The Cougars finished 7-26 with Noffsinger as head coach. Wind River did not reach the playoffs but just missed last season after falling to Riverside in a triangular playoff qualifier. The Cougars’ 3-6 finish last season was the best for the Cougars in Noffsinger’s tenure.

–patrick

Kemmerer’s all-time winningest coach has stepped aside as the Rangers’ head coach.

After 12 seasons, Shawn Rogers resigned as the head football coach at Kemmerer. Jason Ferrarini, a Kemmerer native who was an assistant with the Rangers, has been named as Rogers’ replacement.

Rogers and Ferrarini verified the changes via emails to wyoming-football.com on Thursday.

Rogers finished his tenure as Kemmerer’s all-time winningest coach, going 63-51 in 12 seasons. He led the Rangers to state championships in 2005 and 2007 and also led the team to a school-record 14 consecutive victories in the 2007-08 seasons. However, Kemmerer has gone winless the past two seasons and enters 2015 on a state-worst 20-game losing streak.

Rogers’ 63 victories at Kemmerer is 20 better than any other coach in program history.

Rogers plans to stay at Kemmerer as the elementary principal, he said.

–patrick

Campbell County School District board members voted Tuesday to add a second high school in Gillette.

Sound familiar? It should.

I’ve written about this issue before: How the logic doesn’t outweigh the emotion of such a decision (December 2014); how reclassification might fall out if Gillette adds a second school (March 2011); and the ties between a third school in Casper and a second in Gillette (October 2010).

Like I wrote in 2011, the decision to add a second high school in Gillette affects much more than what happens on the playing fields and courts. From a reclassification standpoint, though, the decision could create ripples that will be felt throughout the state.

If the new school opened in Gillette today, for all sports except football Riverton would go to Class 3A, Lovell to Class 2A and Riverside to Class 1A to accommodate the new school. And for football, Evanston would go to 3A, Buffalo to 2A, Wright to 1A 11-man and Upton to 1A six-man. (Remember, right now Lingle and Cokeville fall below the 11-man/six-man cutline but opt up to 11-man.)

The moves for four-class sports (basketball, volleyball, track, etc.), three-class sports (wrestling, cross country, etc.) and two-class sports (soccer, swimming, etc.) are less of a struggle than the moves for football. Remember in 2007 when Riverton debated opting down to 3A? The Wolverines could make that switch pretty seamlessly for most sports.

Football, though, could present a challenge. If Evanston grows a little bit, the 11th school in the WHSAA listings will likely be Sheridan. Neither Evanston nor Sheridan will likely want to move down a classification. Wyoming could go back to an 11-school 4A and an 11-school 3A to accommodate, which complicates scheduling among other concerns.

The new school is tentatively scheduled to open in fall 2017 — right in the middle of a two-year reclassification cycle for the WHSAA. That will further complicate matters….

Like I said in 2011, we could see a completely new high school classification system develop, with the new school in Gillette as the impetus.

–patrick

Zack Rosette’s 16-catch performance for Rock Springs in the Tigers’ 2010 season finale against Evanston has been added to the individual records page for Wyoming’s best single-game performance.

Rosette’s 16 catches were for 153 yards — short of the yardage top 10 but the state’s (unofficial) best single-game performance as far as number of catches.

Thanks to Tony Yerkovich for the help with this record!

As always, if you think you have a single-game or single-season performance that should be listed with those individual records, let me know: pschmiedt@yahoo.com.

–patrick

Eventually, Wyoming will have a new high school.

Maybe in Gillette. Maybe in Casper. Maybe in Wamsutter, LaBarge or Linch.

And when that happens, the school will have to choose a mascot and colors for itself.

When Wyoming’s most recent new high school, Cheyenne South, opened in 2011, it went with a color scheme and nickname that surprised some people — the black and gold Bison. The surprise came not from the selection (Bison and Cheyenne are a good fit for a mascot) but from the fact that South used a color scheme and mascot already in use in Wyoming.

The black and gold on a Bison uniform? Yep, Buffalo High had been doing that for decades.

The repetitiveness of South’s choice is unique in the Equality State. Only four other pairs of schools repeat color schemes and mascots: Sheridan and Cody (the blue-and-yellow Broncs), Burns and Jackson (the black-and-orange Broncs), Cokeville and Powell (the black-and-orange Panthers), Moorcroft and Green River (the green and white/black Wolves). And one of those is pretty tenuous, as Cody has made a strong move to switch from yellow to gold in recent years.

However, none of these schools is new. They’ve all used their colors and mascots for decades. So when a new school repeated a color scheme and mascot of an existing school — especially when numerous other options were available — it rubbed some people the wrong way.

So what color scheme and mascot options exist for Wyoming’s next new school?

Color schemes

I took a look at existing NFL and major college (FBS) schools to see what unique color schemes aren’t being used in Wyoming right now. Then, using the Ripon Athetic jersey simulator, I made some templates. Some options include:

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Aqua and orange: Like the Miami Dolphins. Aqua would be a unique choice, what with Wyoming’s big blue skies and all, but I’m not sure the pairing with the orange would work. Still could make for a cool base color to pair with something else.

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Silver and black: Like the Oakland Raiders. But Raiders colors in Wyoming? Maybe not.

 

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Red and gold: Like the San Francisco 49ers. Red is a prevalent color in the state, but no Wyoming school has matched it with a true gold. Big Horn, Star Valley and now even Laramie mix maroon and yellow, but the state has no true red/gold combos.

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Light blue and gold: Like UCLA. This, especially accentuated with black, could be a good look. Arvada-Clearmont mixes a light blue and yellow and it looks pretty sharp, but gold would be a unique twist.

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Orange and white: Like Texas or Tennessee. Lots of Wyoming schools have orange, but it’s almost always paired with black. It’d be a bold step to do orange/white with NO black.

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Green and gold: Like South Florida. A bunch of Wyoming schools do green and yellow but, again, true gold is rare.

Screen Shot 2015-04-30 at 8.45.55 AM

Maroon and gold: Like Florida State or Boston College. Again, where’s all the gold uniforms in Wyoming? (Yeah, I know… the simulator I used has its maroon look really purplish.)

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Maroon and orange: Like Virginia Tech. Then again, I can see why no one has done this… blech.

The big takeaway here? Only three Wyoming teams really embrace gold as a GOLD consistently — Buffalo, Wright and Cheyenne South — and all three are black and gold mixes. Other schools dabble in gold on some uniforms and have yellow on others.

Maybe, in retrospect, Cheyenne South wasn’t all that far off in choosing gold. Maybe pairing it with something other than black would have assuaged the doubters and given the school a unique spin untouched by any other school in the state.

———-

Mascots

The top 20 most common high school mascots in the U.S., in order, per this site, are as follows: Eagles, Tigers, Panthers, Bulldogs, Wildcats, Warriors, Lions, Cougars, Indians, Knights, Mustangs, Falcons, Trojans, Vikings, Rams, Cardinals, Raiders, Spartans, Patriots, Pirates.

Of these, mascots that aren’t active in Wyoming right now are the Wildcats, Lions, Knights, Falcons, Cardinals, Raiders, Spartans and Pirates. Albin used to be the Wildcats, and Huntley used to be the Cardinals, and Goshen Hole used to be the Spartans, and Reliance used to be the Pirates. But they’re all closed now.

Surprisingly, no Wyoming high school has opted for the Cowboys. And “wild” but common mascots like the Falcons, Hawks and Bears make a lot of sense, but no active Wyoming school has opted for one of those, either.

Still, I think the best mascots are the unique ones — the ones that embody a community. A few years ago, I looked at the state’s best and worst mascots, and I noted that some of my favorites were the Punchers (Big Piney), the Miners (Hanna), the Doggers (Lingle) and the Oilers (Midwest) because of how well they embody the community they represent.

Ultimately, the decision for any new color scheme and mascot depends on the community in which the school is built.

In a state as small as Wyoming, though, a unique combination shouldn’t be that hard to find.

–patrick

Eight players have been added to the rosters for the Shrine Bowl — four on the North squad and four on the South.

Douglas’ Hunter Haman, Mountain View’s Logan Lupher, Cokeville’s Macen Petersen and Cheyenne East’s Nathan Taylor will join the South team, replacing Star Valley’s Cole Critchfield, Douglas’ Colter Haman, Mountain View’s Austin Houskeeper and Rawlins’ Jalen Krening.

The North will add Rocky Mountain’s Caleb Horrocks, Tongue River’s Pierce Jardine, Thermopolis’ Choc Maddock and Burlington’s Trevor Wardell to replace Tongue River’s Lane Dockery, Sheridan’s Tory Music, Kelly Walsh’s Marcus Nolan and Powell’s Kalei Smith.

The all-star football game will be June 13 in Casper.

–patrick

A couple updates to the records available on the site:

Individual records: Added Kemmerer’s Steve Dover to the individual records page with his 2,124-yard rushing season in 1974. His season is second-best in state history, per available records. If you have updates you can contribute to the individual records listings, please do so! Follow the guidelines listed on that page.

Shrine Bowl records: I also updated the number of players selected to the Shrine Bowl from each school after diving more thoroughly into the Shrine Bowl player listings. The tallies for the following schools have been corrected: Gillette (118, not 115); Cheyenne Central (108, not 107); Laramie (106, not 105); Rock Springs (98, not 97); Evanston (93, not 92); Riverton (85, not 86); Green River (83, not 84); Buffalo (73, not 74); Worland (66, not 65); Lander (54, not 53); Glenrock (41, not 43); Mountain View (40, not 41); Big Horn (36, not 35); Pinedale (33, not 32); Tongue River (27, not 28).

–patrick

Todd Weber, previously an assistant coach at both Douglas and Lusk, has been hired to be the new head coach at Worland.

The hiring was reported by the Big Horn Radio Network and by Northern Wyoming Daily News sports editor Sisco Molina on Twitter.

The BHRN reported Weber has been at Douglas for the past nine years and was an assistant at Lusk prior to his time in Douglas.

Weber replaces Thor Ware, who stepped down after one season. Worland will be on its sixth head coach in five years, joining Wade Sanford (2011), Curt Mayer (2012), Josh Garcia and Bryan Bailey (2013) and Ware (2014).

Worland went 3-6 last season.

–patrick

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