Two Jackson players with record-setting years now sit at the top of Wyoming’s unofficial single-season passing and receiving yard record lists.

Including Week 0 efforts, Jackson’s Sadler Smith finished his season with 3,459 passing yards. Teammate Nate Keipert finished with 1,210 receiving yards. Both marks are unofficial single-season records for Wyoming.

Formerly, the records were held by Campbell County’s Dalton Holst for passing (3,190 yards in 2015) and Cheyenne East’s Chance Aumiller (1,121 yards in 2019).

Jackson went 9-3 this season and finished as Class 3A runners-up.

Smith also made the top 10 this season for single-game passing, with his 429-yard effort against Pocatello, Idaho, now third overall.

Cheyenne East’s Garet Schlabs moved into sixth in single-game receiving yards with 239 yards against Campbell County this season.

I also added sections in the individual records for nine-man and six-man games and seasons. Nine-man records are top five and date back to 2020 only. Six-man records are top 10s and date back to 2009, although full six-man season statistics were not available until 2012. However, some single-game records are incomplete due to lack of fully available game-by-game statistics. I will fill in the missing information as it becomes available.

–patrick

The conference schedules for the 2022 and 2023 seasons have been released to Wyoming high schools by the Wyoming High School Activities Association.

The WHSAA only sets conference schedules; non-conference schedules are set by the individual schools. The 10 Class 4A programs, as usual, will play a nine-game, round-robin schedule.

Schools will have the chance to finalize non-conference schedules and set kickoff times for games today and Wednesday at the annual statewide scheduling meeting in Casper, where the conference schedules were distributed. Schools can also add games throughout the offseason.

Class 2A, Class 1A nine-man and Class 1A six-man were affected by reclassification and will see new schedules. Meanwhile, although the same programs are in Class 4A and 3A, conference schedules are changing.

In Class 2A, the only change is Big Piney’s move out of the West Conference, leaving the West Conference with seven teams to the East’s eight. In the Punchers’ place, the team from Rich County, Utah, will play against six of the seven teams in the West. Rich County will not be a part of the 2A West Conference, though, and will not be eligible for the Wyoming postseason.

Class 1A nine-man will see some new teams, with Big Piney and Guernsey joining the East and West conferences, respectively, and no teams leaving. That gives the classification 16 teams split into two eight-team conferences.

Class 1A six-man will have 11 teams. However, they will have new conference split on north-south alignments. Six teams will be in the North (Burlington, Hulett, Kaycee, Meeteetse, Midwest, Ten Sleep) and five will be in the South (Dubois, Encampment, Farson, Hanna, Snake River). Six-man conference games are scheduled for weeks 2, 3, 4, 6 and 7.

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Some highlights from the season schedules released today:

Some big rivalries: In Class 4A, the Oil Bowl between Natrona and Kelly Walsh will be in Week 3; Cheyenne Central and Cheyenne East meet in the Capital Bowl in Week 6; Campbell County meets Thunder Basin in the Coal Bowl in Week 5 and meets with Sheridan to reprise the Energy Bowl in Week 8. The 3A West will get crazy in the final week with rivalry games between Cody and Powell and between Star Valley and Jackson scheduled for the final week of the regular season. Lander and Riverton, meanwhile, will play the latest of their Fremont County rivalry in Week 5. Lyman and Mountain View reprise their Bridger Valley rivalry in Week 4. Tongue River and Big Horn meet in the Thunder Bowl in Week 7. Other rivalry games are spread throughout the schedule.

Title game rematches: All five championship games from 2021 will see 2022 regular-season rematches, with four of the five games coming before the midway point of the regular season. Sheridan and Rock Springs meet in a rematch of the Class 4A title game in Week 3 in Sweetwater County, while Lovell will play at Lyman the same week to set up a rematch of the 2A championship. Rocky Mountain and Shoshoni will stage a rematch of the Class 1A nine-man championship in Week 4 in Shoshoni, while Cody and Jackson start 3A West play by facing each other in a title-game rematch the same week. Encampment and Snake River will play in Week 6 in Encampment to rematch the 1A six-man title game.

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The full 2022 and 2023 schedules are below, by week and by school.

2022

Week 0 (Friday, Aug. 26)
Class 4A
Campbell County at Cheyenne East
Cheyenne Central at Sheridan
Cheyenne South at Thunder Basin
Natrona at Laramie
Rock Springs at Kelly Walsh
TBD: All other classes.

Week 1 (Friday, Sept. 2)
Class 4A
Campbell County at Laramie
Cheyenne East at Natrona
Kelly Walsh at Cheyenne Central
Sheridan at Cheyenne South
Thunder Basin at Rock Springs
Interclass
Rawlins at Pinedale
TBD: All Class 3A (except Rawlins), 2A (except Pinedale), 1A nine-man, 1A six-man.

Week 2 (Friday, Sept. 9)
Class 4A
Cheyenne East at Thunder Basin
Cheyenne South at Kelly Walsh
Laramie at Sheridan
Natrona at Cheyenne Central
Rock Springs at Campbell County
Class 2A
Big Horn at Upton-Sundance
Cokeville at Lovell
Glenrock at Tongue River
Lyman at Pinedale
Newcastle at Wheatland
Thermopolis at Kemmerer
Torrington at Burns
Class 1A nine-man
Greybull at Shoshoni
Lingle at Lusk
Pine Bluffs at Guernsey
Rocky Mountain at Big Piney
St. Stephens at Wind River
Saratoga at Moorcroft
Southeast at Wright
Wyoming Indian at Riverside
Class 1A six-man
Burlington at Hulett
Encampment at Farson
Meeteetse at Kaycee
Snake River at Dubois
Ten Sleep at Midwest
Interstate
Mountain View at Rich County, Utah
TBD: All Class 3A.
Open: Hanna.

Week 3 (Friday, Sept. 16)
Class 4A
Campbell County at Cheyenne South
Cheyenne Central at Thunder Basin
Laramie at Cheyenne East
Natrona at Kelly Walsh
Sheridan at Rock Springs
Class 2A
Big Horn at Glenrock
Burns at Newcastle
Lovell at Lyman
Mountain View at Thermopolis
Pinedale at Cokeville
Tongue River at Upton-Sundance
Wheatland at Torrington
Class 1A nine-man
Big Piney at Greybull
Guernsey at Lingle
Lusk at Saratoga
Moorcroft at Southeast
Riverside at Wind River
Shoshoni at St. Stephens
Wright at Pine Bluffs
Wyoming Indian at Rocky Mountain
Class 1A six-man
Dubois at Encampment
Hanna at Snake River
Hulett at Meeteetse
Kaycee at Ten Sleep
Midwest at Burlington
Interstate
Rich County, Utah, at Kemmerer
TBD: All Class 3A.
Open: Farson.

Week 4 (Friday, Sept. 23)
Class 4A
Cheyenne Central at Laramie
Cheyenne East at Rock Springs
Cheyenne South at Natrona
Kelly Walsh at Campbell County
Thunder Basin at Sheridan
Class 3A
Buffalo at Lander
Cody at Jackson
Powell at Green River
Riverton at Rawlins
Star Valley at Evanston
Worland at Douglas
Class 2A
Glenrock at Wheatland
Kemmerer at Cokeville
Lyman at Mountain View
Newcastle at Tongue River
Pinedale at Lovell
Torrington at Big Horn
Upton-Sundance at Burns
Class 1A nine-man
Greybull at Wyoming Indian
Lingle at Wright
Pine Bluffs at Moorcroft
Rocky Mountain at Shoshoni
St. Stephens at Riverside
Saratoga at Guernsey
Southeast at Lusk
Wind River at Big Piney
Class 1A six-man
Burlington at Meeteetse
Encampment at Hanna
Farson at Dubois
Midwest at Kaycee
Ten Sleep at Hulett
Interstate
Rich County, Utah, at Thermopolis
Open: Snake River.

Week 5 (Friday, Sept. 30)
Class 4A
Campbell County at Thunder Basin
Cheyenne East at Sheridan
Cheyenne South at Cheyenne Central
Kelly Walsh at Laramie
Rock Springs at Natrona
Class 3A
Douglas at Buffalo
Evanston at Jackson
Green River at Cody
Lander at Riverton
Star Valley at Powell
Worland at Rawlins
Class 2A
Burns at Glenrock
Cokeville at Mountain View
Kemmerer at Lyman
Thermopolis at Pinedale
Torrington at Tongue River
Upton-Sundance at Newcastle
Wheatland at Big Horn
Class 1A nine-man
Big Piney at St. Stephens
Guernsey at Southeast
Lusk at Pine Bluffs
Moorcroft at Lingle
Riverside at Shoshoni
Rocky Mountain at Greybull
Wright at Saratoga
Wyoming Indian at Wind River
Open: Lovell, all 1A six-man.

Week 6 (Friday, Oct. 7)
Class 4A
Cheyenne Central at Cheyenne East
Laramie at Thunder Basin
Natrona at Campbell County
Rock Springs at Cheyenne South
Sheridan at Kelly Walsh
Class 3A
Buffalo at Worland
Cody at Star Valley
Douglas at Riverton
Jackson at Green River
Powell at Evanston
Rawlins at Lander
Class 2A
Big Horn at Newcastle
Glenrock at Torrington
Mountain View at Lovell
Pinedale at Kemmerer
Thermopolis at Lyman
Tongue River at Burns
Wheatland at Upton-Sundance
Class 1A nine-man
Lingle at Southeast
Lusk at Moorcroft
Riverside at Rocky Mountain
St. Stephens at Wyoming Indian
Saratoga at Pine Bluffs
Shoshoni at Big Piney
Wind River at Greybull
Wright at Guernsey
Class 1A six-man
Hanna at Farson
Hulett at Midwest
Kaycee at Burlington
Meeteetse at Ten Sleep
Snake River at Encampment
Interstate
Rich County, Utah, at Cokeville
Open: Dubois.

Week 7 (Friday, Oct. 14)
Class 4A
Cheyenne Central at Campbell County
Cheyenne East at Cheyenne South
Laramie at Rock Springs
Sheridan at Natrona
Thunder Basin at Kelly Walsh
Class 3A
Evanston at Cody
Green River at Star Valley
Jackson at Powell
Rawlins at Douglas
Riverton at Buffalo
Worland at Lander
Class 2A
Burns at Wheatland
Cokeville at Thermopolis
Lovell at Kemmerer
Mountain View at Pinedale
Newcastle at Glenrock
Tongue River at Big Horn
Upton-Sundance at Torrington
Class 1A nine-man
Big Piney at Wyoming Indian
Greybull at Riverside
Guernsey at Lusk
Moorcroft at Wright
Pine Bluffs at Lingle
St. Stephens at Rocky Mountain
Shoshoni at Wind River
Southeast at Saratoga
Class 1A six-man
Burlington at Ten Sleep
Dubois at Hanna
Farson at Snake River
Hulett at Kaycee
Midwest at Meeteetse
Interstate
Lyman at Rich County, Utah
Open: Encampment.

Week 8 (Friday, Oct. 21)
Class 4A
Campbell County at Sheridan
Cheyenne South at Laramie
Kelly Walsh at Cheyenne East
Rock Springs at Cheyenne Central
Thunder Basin at Natrona
Class 3A
Buffalo at Rawlins
Cody at Powell
Green River at Evanston
Lander at Douglas
Riverton at Worland
Star Valley at Jackson
Class 2A
Big Horn at Burns
Glenrock at Upton-Sundance
Kemmerer at Mountain View
Lovell at Thermopolis
Lyman at Cokeville
Torrington at Newcastle
Wheatland at Tongue River
Class 1A nine-man
Greybull at St. Stephens
Guernsey at Moorcroft
Lusk at Wright
Riverside at Big Piney
Rocky Mountain at Wind River
Saratoga at Lingle
Southeast at Pine Bluffs
Wyoming Indian at Shoshoni
Interstate
Pinedale at Rich County, Utah
Open: All 1A six-man.

2022 schedules by team
Class 4A schedules include Zero Week; other classifications do not. Open weeks will be filled by schools.

Class 4A
Campbell County
: at Cheyenne East; at Laramie; vs. Rock Springs; at Cheyenne South; vs. Kelly Walsh; at Thunder Basin; vs. Natrona; vs. Cheyenne Central; at Sheridan.
Cheyenne Central: at Sheridan; vs. Kelly Walsh; vs. Natrona; at Thunder Basin; at Laramie; vs. Cheyenne South; at Cheyenne East; at Campbell County; vs. Rock Springs.
Cheyenne East: vs. Campbell County; at Natrona; at Thunder Basin; vs. Laramie; at Rock Springs; at Sheridan; vs. Cheyenne Central; at Cheyenne South; vs. Kelly Walsh.
Cheyenne South: at Thunder Basin; vs. Sheridan; at Kelly Walsh; vs. Campbell County; at Natrona; at Cheyenne Central; vs. Rock Springs; vs. Cheyenne East; at Laramie.
Kelly Walsh: vs. Rock Springs; at Cheyenne Central; vs. Cheyenne South; vs. Natrona; at Campbell County; at Laramie; vs. Sheridan; vs. Thunder Basin; at Cheyenne East.
Laramie: vs. Natrona; vs. Campbell County; at Sheridan; at Cheyenne East; vs. Cheyenne Central; vs. Kelly Walsh; at Thunder Basin; at Rock Springs; vs. Cheyenne South.
Natrona: at Laramie; vs. Cheyenne East; at Cheyenne Central; at Kelly Walsh; vs. Cheyenne South; vs. Rock Springs; at Campbell County; vs. Sheridan; vs. Thunder Basin.
Rock Springs: at Kelly Walsh; vs. Thunder Basin; at Campbell County; vs. Sheridan; vs. Cheyenne East; at Natrona; at Cheyenne South; vs. Laramie; at Cheyenne Central.
Sheridan: vs. Cheyenne Central; at Cheyenne South; vs. Laramie; at Rock Springs; vs. Thunder Basin; vs. Cheyenne East; at Kelly Walsh; at Natrona; vs. Campbell County.
Thunder Basin: vs. Cheyenne South; at Rock Springs; vs. Cheyenne East; vs. Cheyenne Central; at Sheridan; vs. Campbell County; vs. Laramie; at Kelly Walsh; at Natrona.

Class 3A East
Buffalo
: Open; Open; Open; at Lander; vs. Douglas; at Worland; vs. Riverton; at Rawlins.
Douglas: Open; Open; Open; vs. Worland; at Buffalo; at Riverton; vs. Rawlins; vs. Lander.
Lander: Open; Open; Open; vs. Buffalo; at Riverton; vs. Rawlins; vs. Worland; at Douglas.
Rawlins: at Pinedale; Open; Open; vs. Riverton; vs. Worland; at Lander; at Douglas; vs. Buffalo.
Riverton: Open; Open; Open; at Rawlins; vs. Lander; vs. Douglas; at Buffalo; at Worland.
Worland: Open; Open; Open; at Douglas; at Rawlins; vs. Buffalo; at Lander; vs. Riverton.

Class 3A West
Cody
: Open; Open; Open; at Jackson; vs. Green River; at Star Valley; vs. Evanston; at Powell.
Evanston: Open; Open; Open; vs. Star Valley; at Jackson; vs. Powell; at Cody; vs. Green River.
Green River: Open; Open; Open; vs. Powell; at Cody; vs. Jackson; at Star Valley; at Evanston.
Jackson: Open; Open; Open; vs. Cody; vs. Evanston; at Green River; at Powell; vs. Star Valley.
Powell: Open; Open; Open; at Green River; vs. Star Valley; at Evanston; vs. Jackson; vs. Cody.
Star Valley: Open; Open; Open; at Evanston; at Powell; vs. Cody; vs. Green River; at Jackson.

Class 2A East
Big Horn
: Open; at Upton-Sundance; at Glenrock; vs. Torrington; vs. Wheatland; at Newcastle; vs. Tongue River; at Burns.
Burns: Open; vs. Torrington; at Newcastle; vs. Upton-Sundance; at Glenrock; vs. Tongue River; at Wheatland; vs. Big Horn.
Glenrock: Open; at Tongue River; vs. Big Horn; at Wheatland; vs. Burns; at Torrington; vs. Newcastle; at Upton-Sundance.
Newcastle: Open; at Wheatland; vs. Burns; at Tongue River; vs. Upton-Sundance; vs. Big Horn; at Glenrock; vs. Torrington.
Tongue River: Open; vs. Glenrock; at Upton-Sundance; vs. Newcastle; vs. Torrington; at Burns; at Big Horn; vs. Wheatland.
Torrington: Open; at Burns; vs. Wheatland; at Big Horn; at Tongue River; vs. Glenrock; vs. Upton-Sundance; at Newcastle.
Upton-Sundance: Open; vs. Big Horn; vs. Tongue River; at Burns; at Newcastle; vs. Wheatland; at Torrington; vs. Glenrock.
Wheatland: Open; vs. Newcastle; at Torrington; vs. Glenrock; at Big Horn; at Upton-Sundance; vs. Burns; at Tongue River.

Class 2A West
Cokeville
: Open; at Lovell; vs. Pinedale; vs. Kemmerer; at Mountain View; vs. Rich County, Utah; at Thermopolis; vs. Lyman.
Kemmerer: Open; vs. Thermopolis; vs. Rich County, Utah; at Cokeville; at Lyman; vs. Pinedale; vs. Lovell; at Mountain View.
Lovell: Open; vs. Cokeville; at Lyman; vs. Pinedale; Open; vs. Mountain View; at Kemmerer; at Thermopolis.
Lyman: Open; at Pinedale; vs. Lovell; at Mountain View; vs. Kemmerer; vs. Thermopolis; at Rich County, Utah; at Cokeville.
Mountain View: Open; at Rich County, Utah; at Thermopolis; vs. Lyman; vs. Cokeville; at Lovell; at Pinedale; vs. Kemmerer.
Pinedale: vs. Rawlins; vs. Lyman; at Cokeville; at Lovell; vs. Thermopolis; at Kemmerer; vs. Mountain View; at Rich County, Utah.
Thermopolis: Open; at Kemmerer; vs. Mountain View; vs. Rich County, Utah; at Pinedale; at Lyman; vs. Cokeville; vs. Lovell.

Class 1A nine-man East
Guernsey
: Open; vs. Pine Bluffs; at Lingle; vs. Saratoga; at Southeast; vs. Wright; at Lusk; at Moorcroft.
Lingle: Open; at Lusk; vs. Guernsey; at Wright; vs. Moorcroft; at Southeast; vs. Pine Bluffs; vs. Saratoga.
Lusk: Open; vs. Lingle; at Saratoga; vs. Southeast; at Pine Bluffs; at Moorcroft; vs. Guernsey; at Wright.
Moorcroft: Open; vs. Saratoga; at Southeast; vs. Pine Bluffs; at Lingle; vs. Lusk; at Wright; vs. Guernsey.
Pine Bluffs: Open; at Guernsey; vs. Wright; at Moorcroft; vs. Lusk; vs. Saratoga; at Lingle; vs. Southeast.
Saratoga: Open; at Moorcroft; vs. Lusk; at Guernsey; vs. Wright; at Pine Bluffs; vs. Southeast; at Lingle.
Southeast: Open; at Wright; vs. Moorcroft; at Lusk; vs. Guernsey; vs. Lingle; at Saratoga; at Pine Bluffs.
Wright: Open; vs. Southeast; at Pine Bluffs; vs. Lingle; at Saratoga; at Guernsey; vs. Moorcroft; vs. Lusk.

Class 1A nine-man West
Big Piney
: Open; vs. Rocky Mountain; at Greybull; vs. Wind River; at St. Stephens; vs. Shoshoni; at Wyoming Indian; vs. Riverside.
Greybull: Open; at Shoshoni; vs. Big Piney; at Wyoming Indian; vs. Rocky Mountain; vs. Wind River; at Riverside; at St. Stephens.
Riverside: Open; vs. Wyoming Indian; at Wind River; vs. St. Stephens; at Shoshoni; at Rocky Mountain; vs. Greybull; at Big Piney.
Rocky Mountain: Open; at Big Piney; vs. Wyoming Indian; at Shoshoni; at Greybull; vs. Riverside; vs. St. Stephens; at Wind River.
St. Stephens: Open; at Wind River; vs. Shoshoni; at Riverside; vs. Big Piney; at Wyoming Indian; at Rocky Mountain; vs. Greybull.
Shoshoni: Open; vs. Greybull; at St. Stephens; vs. Rocky Mountain; vs. Riverside; at Big Piney; at Wind River; vs. Wyoming Indian.
Wind River: Open; vs. St. Stephens; vs. Riverside; at Big Piney; vs. Wyoming Indian; at Greybull; vs. Shoshoni; vs. Rocky Mountain.
Wyoming Indian: Open; at Riverside; at Rocky Mountain; vs. Greybull; at Wind River; vs. St. Stephens; vs. Big Piney; at Shoshoni.

Class 1A six-man North
Burlington
: Open; at Hulett; vs. Midwest; at Meeteetse; Open; vs. Kaycee; at Ten Sleep; Open.
Hulett: Open; vs. Burlington; at Meeteetse; vs. Ten Sleep; Open; at Midwest; at Kaycee; Open.
Kaycee: Open; vs. Meeteetse; at Ten Sleep; vs. Midwest; Open; at Burlington; vs. Hulett; Open.
Meeteetse: Open; at Kaycee; vs. Hulett; vs. Burlington; Open; at Ten Sleep; vs. Midwest; Open.
Midwest: Open; vs. Ten Sleep; at Burlington; at Kaycee; Open; vs. Hulett; at Meeteetse; Open.
Ten Sleep: Open; at Midwest; vs. Kaycee; at Hulett; Open; vs. Meeteetse; vs. Burlington; Open.

Class 1A six-man South
Dubois
: Open; vs. Snake River; at Encampment; vs. Farson; Open; Open; at Hanna; Open.
Encampment: Open; at Farson; vs. Dubois; at Hanna; Open; vs. Snake River; Open; Open.
Farson: Open; vs. Encampment; Open; at Dubois; Open; vs. Hanna; at Snake River; Open.
Hanna: Open; Open; at Snake River; vs. Encampment; Open; at Farson; vs. Dubois; Open.
Snake River: Open; at Dubois; vs. Hanna; Open; Open; at Encampment; vs. Farson; Open.

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+++

2023

Below is the 2023 conference schedule, which is a flip-flop of the 2022 schedule:

Week 0 (Friday, Aug. 25)
Class 4A
Cheyenne East at Campbell County
Kelly Walsh at Rock Springs
Laramie at Natrona
Sheridan at Cheyenne Central
Thunder Basin at Cheyenne South
TBD: All other classes.

Week 1 (Friday, Sept. 1)
Class 4A
Cheyenne Central at Kelly Walsh
Cheyenne South at Sheridan
Laramie at Campbell County
Natrona at Cheyenne East
Rock Springs at Thunder Basin
Interclass
Pinedale at Rawlins
TBD: All Class 3A (except Rawlins), 2A (except Pinedale), 1A nine-man, 1A six-man.

Week 2 (Friday, Sept. 8)
Class 4A
Campbell County at Rock Springs
Cheyenne Central at Natrona
Kelly Walsh at Cheyenne South
Sheridan at Laramie
Thunder Basin at Cheyenne East
Class 2A
Burns at Torrington
Kemmerer at Thermopolis
Lovell at Cokeville
Pinedale at Lyman
Tongue River at Glenrock
Upton-Sundance at Big Horn
Wheatland at Newcastle
Class 1A nine-man
Big Piney at Rocky Mountain
Guernsey at Pine Bluffs
Lusk at Lingle
Moorcroft at Saratoga
Riverside at Wyoming Indian
Shoshoni at Greybull
Wind River at St. Stephens
Wright at Southeast
Class 1A six-man
Dubois at Snake River
Farson at Encampment
Hulett at Burlington
Kaycee at Meeteetse
Midwest at Ten Sleep
Interstate
Rich County, Utah, at Mountain View
TBD: All Class 3A.
Open: Hanna.

Week 3 (Friday, Sept. 15)
Class 4A
Cheyenne East at Laramie
Cheyenne South at Campbell County
Kelly Walsh at Natrona
Rock Springs at Sheridan
Thunder Basin at Cheyenne Central
Class 2A
Cokeville at Pinedale
Glenrock at Big Horn
Lyman at Lovell
Newcastle at Burns
Thermopolis at Mountain View
Torrington at Wheatland
Upton-Sundance at Tongue River
Class 1A nine-man
Greybull at Big Piney
Lingle at Guernsey
Pine Bluffs at Wright
Rocky Mountain at Wyoming Indian
St. Stephens at Shoshoni
Saratoga at Lusk
Southeast at Moorcroft
Wind River at Riverside
Class 1A six-man
Burlington at Midwest
Encampment at Dubois
Meeteetse at Hulett
Snake River at Hanna
Ten Sleep at Kaycee
Interstate
Kemmerer at Rich County, Utah
TBD: All Class 3A.
Open: Farson.

Week 4 (Friday, Sept. 22)
Class 4A
Campbell County at Kelly Walsh
Laramie at Cheyenne Central
Natrona at Cheyenne South
Rock Springs at Cheyenne East
Sheridan at Thunder Basin
Class 3A
Douglas at Worland
Evanston at Star Valley
Green River at Powell
Jackson at Cody
Lander at Buffalo
Rawlins at Riverton
Class 2A
Big Horn at Torrington
Burns at Upton-Sundance
Cokeville at Kemmerer
Lovell at Pinedale
Mountain View at Lyman
Tongue River at Newcastle
Wheatland at Glenrock
Class 1A nine-man
Big Piney at Wind River
Guernsey at Saratoga
Lusk at Southeast
Moorcroft at Pine Bluffs
Riverside at St. Stephens
Shoshoni at Rocky Mountain
Wright at Lingle
Wyoming Indian at Greybull
Class 1A six-man
Dubois at Farson
Hanna at Encampment
Hulett at Ten Sleep
Kaycee at Midwest
Meeteetse at Burlington
Interstate
Thermopolis at Rich County, Utah
Open: Snake River.

Week 5 (Friday, Sept. 29)
Class 4A
Cheyenne Central at Cheyenne South
Laramie at Kelly Walsh
Natrona at Rock Springs
Sheridan at Cheyenne East
Thunder Basin at Campbell County
Class 3A
Buffalo at Douglas
Cody at Green River
Jackson at Evanston
Powell at Star Valley
Rawlins at Worland
Riverton at Lander
Class 2A
Big Horn at Wheatland
Glenrock at Burns
Lyman at Kemmerer
Mountain View at Cokeville
Newcastle at Upton-Sundance
Pinedale at Thermopolis
Tongue River at Torrington
Class 1A nine-man
Greybull at Rocky Mountain
Lingle at Moorcroft
Pine Bluffs at Lusk
St. Stephens at Big Piney
Saratoga at Wright
Shoshoni at Riverside
Southeast at Guernsey
Wind River at Wyoming Indian
Open: Lovell, all 1A six-man.

Week 6 (Friday, Oct. 6)
Class 4A
Campbell County at Natrona
Cheyenne East at Cheyenne Central
Cheyenne South at Rock Springs
Kelly Walsh at Sheridan
Thunder Basin at Laramie
Class 3A
Evanston at Powell
Green River at Jackson
Lander at Rawlins
Riverton at Douglas
Star Valley at Cody
Worland at Buffalo
Class 2A
Burns at Tongue River
Kemmerer at Pinedale
Lovell at Mountain View
Lyman at Thermopolis
Newcastle at Big Horn
Torrington at Glenrock
Upton-Sundance at Wheatland
Class 1A nine-man
Big Piney at Shoshoni
Greybull at Wind River
Guernsey at Wright
Moorcroft at Lusk
Pine Bluffs at Saratoga
Rocky Mountain at Riverside
Southeast at Lingle
Wyoming Indian at St. Stephens
Class 1A six-man
Burlington at Kaycee
Encampment at Snake River
Farson at Hanna
Midwest at Hulett
Ten Sleep at Meeteetse
Interstate
Cokeville at Rich County, Utah
Open: Dubois.

Week 7 (Friday, Oct. 13)
Class 4A
Campbell County at Cheyenne Central
Cheyenne South at Cheyenne East
Kelly Walsh at Thunder Basin
Natrona at Sheridan
Rock Springs at Laramie
Class 3A
Buffalo at Riverton
Cody at Evanston
Douglas at Rawlins
Lander at Worland
Powell at Jackson
Star Valley at Green River
Class 2A
Big Horn at Tongue River
Glenrock at Newcastle
Kemmerer at Lovell
Pinedale at Mountain View
Thermopolis at Cokeville
Torrington at Upton-Sundance
Wheatland at Burns
Class 1A nine-man
Lingle at Pine Bluffs
Lusk at Guernsey
Riverside at Greybull
Rocky Mountain at St. Stephens
Saratoga at Southeast
Wind River at Shoshoni
Wright at Moorcroft
Wyoming Indian at Big Piney
Class 1A six-man
Hanna at Dubois
Kaycee at Hulett
Meeteetse at Midwest
Snake River at Farson
Ten Sleep at Burlington
Interstate
Rich County, Utah, at Lyman
Open: Encampment.

Week 8 (Friday, Oct. 20)
Class 4A
Cheyenne Central at Rock Springs
Cheyenne East at Kelly Walsh
Laramie at Cheyenne South
Natrona at Thunder Basin
Sheridan at Campbell County
Class 3A
Douglas at Lander
Evanston at Green River
Jackson at Star Valley
Powell at Cody
Rawlins at Buffalo
Worland at Riverton
Class 2A
Burns at Big Horn
Cokeville at Lyman
Mountain View at Kemmerer
Newcastle at Torrington
Thermopolis at Lovell
Tongue River at Wheatland
Upton-Sundance at Glenrock
Class 1A nine-man
Big Piney at Riverside
Lingle at Saratoga
Moorcroft at Guernsey
Pine Bluffs at Southeast
St. Stephens at Greybull
Shoshoni at Wyoming Indian
Wind River at Rocky Mountain
Wright at Lusk
Interstate
Rich County, Utah, at Pinedale
Open: All 1A six-man.

2023 schedules by team
Class 4A schedules include Zero Week; other classifications do not. Open weeks will be filled by schools.

Class 4A
Campbell County
: vs. Cheyenne East; vs. Laramie; at Rock Springs; vs. Cheyenne South; at Kelly Walsh; vs. Thunder Basin; at Natrona; at Cheyenne Central; vs. Sheridan.
Cheyenne Central: vs. Sheridan; at Kelly Walsh; at Natrona; vs. Thunder Basin; vs. Laramie; at Cheyenne South; vs. Cheyenne East; vs. Campbell County; at Rock Springs.
Cheyenne East: at Campbell County; vs. Natrona; vs. Thunder Basin; at Laramie; vs. Rock Springs; vs. Sheridan; at Cheyenne Central; vs. Cheyenne South; at Kelly Walsh.
Cheyenne South: vs. Thunder Basin; at Sheridan; vs. Kelly Walsh; at Campbell County; vs. Natrona; vs. Cheyenne Central; at Rock Springs; at Cheyenne East; vs. Laramie.
Kelly Walsh: at Rock Springs; vs. Cheyenne Central; at Cheyenne South; at Natrona; vs. Campbell County; vs. Laramie; at Sheridan; at Thunder Basin; vs. Cheyenne East.
Laramie: at Natrona; at Campbell County; vs. Sheridan; vs. Cheyenne East; at Cheyenne Central; at Kelly Walsh; vs. Thunder Basin; vs. Rock Springs; at Cheyenne South.
Natrona: vs. Laramie; at Cheyenne East; vs. Cheyenne Central; vs. Kelly Walsh; at Cheyenne South; at Rock Springs; vs. Campbell County; at Sheridan; at Thunder Basin.
Rock Springs: vs. Kelly Walsh; at Thunder Basin; vs. Campbell County; at Sheridan; at Cheyenne East; vs. Natrona; vs. Cheyenne South; at Laramie; vs. Cheyenne Central.
Sheridan: at Cheyenne Central; vs. Cheyenne South; at Laramie; vs. Rock Springs; at Thunder Basin; at Cheyenne East; vs. Kelly Walsh; vs. Natrona; at Campbell County.
Thunder Basin: at Cheyenne South; vs. Rock Springs; at Cheyenne East; at Cheyenne Central; vs. Sheridan; at Campbell County; at Laramie; vs. Kelly Walsh; vs. Natrona.

Class 3A East
Buffalo
: Open; Open; Open; vs. Lander; at Douglas; vs. Worland; at Riverton; vs. Rawlins.
Douglas: Open; Open; Open; at Worland; vs. Buffalo; vs. Riverton; at Rawlins; at Lander.
Lander: Open; Open; Open; at Buffalo; vs. Riverton; at Rawlins; at Worland; vs. Douglas.
Rawlins: vs. Pinedale; Open; Open; at Riverton; at Worland; vs. Lander; vs. Douglas; at Buffalo.
Riverton: Open; Open; Open; vs. Rawlins; at Lander; at Douglas; vs. Buffalo; vs. Worland.
Worland: Open; Open; Open; vs. Douglas; vs. Rawlins; at Buffalo; vs. Lander; at Riverton.

Class 3A West
Cody
: Open; Open; Open; vs. Jackson; at Green River; vs. Star Valley; at Evanston; vs. Powell.
Evanston: Open; Open; Open; at Star Valley; vs. Jackson; at Powell; vs. Cody; at Green River.
Green River: Open; Open; Open; at Powell; vs. Cody; at Jackson; vs. Star Valley; vs. Evanston.
Jackson: Open; Open; Open; at Cody; at Evanston; vs. Green River; vs. Powell; at Star Valley.
Powell: Open; Open; Open; vs. Green River; at Star Valley; vs. Evanston; at Jackson; at Cody.
Star Valley: Open; Open; Open; vs. Evanston; vs. Powell; at Cody; at Green River; vs. Jackson.

Class 2A East
Big Horn
: Open; vs. Upton-Sundance; vs. Glenrock; at Torrington; at Wheatland; vs. Newcastle; at Tongue River; vs. Burns.
Burns: Open; at Torrington; vs. Newcastle; at Upton-Sundance; vs. Glenrock; at Tongue River; vs. Wheatland; at Big Horn.
Glenrock: Open; vs. Tongue River; at Big Horn; vs. Wheatland; at Burns; vs. Torrington; at Newcastle; vs. Upton-Sundance.
Newcastle: Open; vs. Wheatland; at Burns; vs. Tongue River; at Upton-Sundance; at Big Horn; vs. Glenrock; at Torrington.
Tongue River: Open; at Glenrock; vs. Upton-Sundance; at Newcastle; at Torrington; vs. Burns; vs. Big Horn; at Wheatland.
Torrington: Open; vs. Burns; at Wheatland; vs. Big Horn; vs. Tongue River; at Glenrock; at Upton-Sundance; vs. Newcastle.
Upton-Sundance: Open; at Big Horn; at Tongue River; vs. Burns; vs. Newcastle; at Wheatland; vs. Torrington; at Glenrock.
Wheatland: Open; at Newcastle; vs. Torrington; at Glenrock; vs. Big Horn; vs. Upton-Sundance; at Burns; vs. Tongue River.

Class 2A West
Cokeville
: Open; vs. Lovell; at Pinedale; at Kemmerer; vs. Mountain View; at Rich County, Utah; vs. Thermopolis; at Lyman.
Kemmerer: Open; at Thermopolis; at Rich County, Utah; vs. Cokeville; vs. Lyman; at Pinedale; at Lovell; vs. Mountain View.
Lovell: Open; at Cokeville; vs. Lyman; at Pinedale; Open; at Mountain View; vs. Kemmerer; vs. Thermopolis.
Lyman: Open; vs. Pinedale; at Lovell; vs. Mountain View; at Kemmerer; at Thermopolis; vs. Rich County, Utah; vs. Cokeville.
Mountain View: Open; vs. Rich County, Utah; vs. Thermopolis; at Lyman; at Cokeville; vs. Lovell; vs. Pinedale; at Kemmerer.
Pinedale: at Rawlins; at Lyman; vs. Cokeville; vs. Lovell; at Thermopolis; vs. Kemmerer; at Mountain View; vs. Rich County, Utah.
Thermopolis: Open; vs. Kemmerer; at Mountain View; at Rich County, Utah; vs. Pinedale; vs. Lyman; at Cokeville; at Lovell.

Class 1A nine-man East
Guernsey
: Open; at Pine Bluffs; vs. Lingle; at Saratoga; vs. Southeast; at Wright; vs. Lusk; vs. Moorcroft.
Lingle: Open; vs. Lusk; at Guernsey; vs. Wright; at Moorcroft; vs. Southeast; at Pine Bluffs; at Saratoga.
Lusk: Open; at Lingle; vs. Saratoga; at Southeast; vs. Pine Bluffs; vs. Moorcroft; at Guernsey; vs. Wright.
Moorcroft: Open; at Saratoga; vs. Southeast; at Pine Bluffs; vs. Lingle; at Lusk; vs. Wright; at Guernsey.
Pine Bluffs: Open; vs. Guernsey; at Wright; vs. Moorcroft; at Lusk; at Saratoga; vs. Lingle; at Southeast.
Saratoga: Open; vs. Moorcroft; at Lusk; vs. Guernsey; at Wright; vs. Pine Bluffs; at Southeast; vs. Lingle.
Southeast: Open; vs. Wright; at Moorcroft; vs. Lusk; at Guernsey; at Lingle; vs. Saratoga; vs. Pine Bluffs.
Wright: Open; at Southeast; vs. Pine Bluffs; at Lingle; vs. Saratoga; vs. Guernsey; at Moorcroft; at Lusk.

Class 1A nine-man West
Big Piney
: Open; at Rocky Mountain; vs. Greybull; at Wind River; vs. St. Stephens; at Shoshoni; vs. Wyoming Indian; at Riverside.
Greybull: Open; vs. Shoshoni; at Big Piney; vs. Wyoming Indian; at Rocky Mountain; at Wind River; vs. Riverside; vs. St. Stephens.
Riverside: Open; at Wyoming Indian; vs. Wind River; at St. Stephens; vs. Shoshoni; vs. Rocky Mountain; at Greybull; vs. Big Piney.
Rocky Mountain: Open; vs. Big Piney; at Wyoming Indian; vs. Shoshoni; vs. Greybull; at Riverside; at St. Stephens; vs. Wind River.
St. Stephens: Open; vs. Wind River; at Shoshoni; vs. Riverside; at Big Piney; vs. Wyoming Indian; vs. Rocky Mountain; at Greybull.
Shoshoni: Open; at Greybull; vs. St. Stephens; at Rocky Mountain; at Riverside; vs. Big Piney; vs. Wind River; at Wyoming Indian.
Wind River: Open; at St. Stephens; at Riverside; vs. Big Piney; at Wyoming Indian; vs. Greybull; at Shoshoni; at Rocky Mountain.
Wyoming Indian: Open; vs. Riverside; vs. Rocky Mountain; at Greybull; vs. Wind River; at St. Stephens; at Big Piney; vs. Shoshoni.

Class 1A six-man North
Burlington
: Open; vs. Hulett; at Midwest; vs. Meeteetse; Open; at Kaycee; vs. Ten Sleep; Open.
Hulett: Open; at Burlington; vs. Meeteetse; at Ten Sleep; Open; vs. Midwest; vs. Kaycee; Open.
Kaycee: Open; at Meeteetse; vs. Ten Sleep; at Midwest; Open; vs. Burlington; at Hulett; Open.
Meeteetse: Open; vs. Kaycee; at Hulett; at Burlington; Open; vs. Ten Sleep; at Midwest; Open.
Midwest: Open; at Ten Sleep; vs. Burlington; vs. Kaycee; Open; at Hulett; vs. Meeteetse; Open.
Ten Sleep: Open; vs. Midwest; at Kaycee; vs. Hulett; Open; at Meeteetse; at Burlington; Open.

Class 1A six-man South
Dubois
: Open; at Snake River; vs. Encampment; at Farson; Open; Open; vs. Hanna; Open.
Encampment: Open; vs. Farson; at Dubois; vs. Hanna; Open; at Snake River; Open; Open.
Farson: Open; at Encampment; Open; vs. Dubois; Open; at Hanna; vs. Snake River; Open.
Hanna: Open; Open; vs. Snake River; at Encampment; Open; vs. Farson; at Dubois; Open.
Snake River: Open; vs. Dubois; at Hanna; Open; Open; vs. Encampment; at Farson; Open.

–patrick

Cokeville’s record-setting head football coach, Todd Dayton, will retire at the end of the 2021 season.

No Wyoming high school football coach has won more games, been the head coach for more seasons or won more state championships in the Equality State than Dayton.

Dayton’s retirement was first reported by SVI Media on Facebook.

Dayton was honored during Cokeville’s homecoming game Friday afternoon against Thermopolis. Among the dignitaries were Gov. Mark Gordon, WHSAA Commissioner Ron Laird, state representatives, school board members and Cokeville administrators.

Keith Nate, an assistant coach and fellow Cokeville graduate who joined Dayton for almost his entire coaching career at Cokeville, was also honored. Nate has had multiple sclerosis for many years but has continued coaching and being part of the football program.

The Cokeville football field was renamed Nate-Dayton Field in honor of both coaches.

In remarks to the crowd before the game, Gordon told the crowd the naming of the field was fitting when “you really think about the amount of effort Mr. Nate and Mr. Dayton put in.” Gordon also called Friday “the greatest day for the greatest field in Wyoming.”

A 1970 graduate of Cokeville High School, Dayton taught and coached in Kemmerer for six years as an assistant before taking over the head coaching position at his alma mater in 1980.

Dayton is Wyoming’s all-time leader among high school football coaches in victories, games coached, seasons coached and state championships, among other records. He has led the Panthers since 1980, the 2021 season representing Dayton’s 42nd as the Panthers’ leader.

He helped Cokeville win 20 state championships in his time as head coach, including a state-record six consecutive titles between 1986 and 1991. The Panthers also won four straight titles from 1993-96, three consecutive titles from 2001-03, back-to-back titles in 1983-84, 2010-11 and 2013-14, and a championship in 1998. Ten of his teams went undefeated. The Panthers also won a program-best 26 games in a row from 1987-90, a streak that’s in the top 10 of Wyoming winning streaks.

Entering Week 5 of the 2021 season, Dayton had a career record of 343-69, a winning percentage of .833. His winning percentage is the highest among all Wyoming football coaches with at least 50 victories.

Dayton also coached Cokeville’s boys basketball team for 30 years, with the 2022 season set to be his 31st. He coached the team from 1981-2007 and again from 2019 to 2021, winning titles in 1981, 1990 and 1997.

The coach who’s No. 2 on Wyoming’s all-time football victory list, Natrona’s Steve Harshman, entered Week 5 with 215 victories in Wyoming, 128 fewer than Dayton.

–patrick

At least 10 schools in a variety of sports will be up for moving classifications when the Wyoming High School Activities Association makes its changes for the 2022-23 and 2023-24 school years.

And in football, at least eight schools will have decisions, or changes, to make.

No sport with more than one classification will be unaffected by the changes, which will be discussed and voted on by the WHSAA’s board of directors this fall and, if approved, go into effect with the fall 2022 seasons.

Enrollment numbers for the latest round of reclassification were distributed to schools during the WHSAA’s quarterly district meetings across the state the past two weeks.

Wyoming high schools are reclassified for sports and activities every two years based on enrollment numbers, calculated as Average Daily Membership, or ADM. Those numbers for each school, as provided by the WHSAA, are below:

  1. Kelly Walsh, 1,996.17
  2. Natrona, 1,954.82
  3. Cheyenne East, 1,689.80
  4. Rock Springs, 1,615.71
  5. Cheyenne South, 1,454.89
  6. Cheyenne Central, 1,417.00
  7. Thunder Basin, 1,310.36
  8. Campbell County, 1,304.18
  9. Laramie, 1,171.84
  10. Sheridan, 1,142.88
  11. Star Valley, 906.08
  12. Jackson, 870.46
  13. Evanston, 831.24
  14. Riverton, 773.04
  15. Green River, 771.12
  16. Cody, 626.28
  17. Lander, 581.71
  18. Powell, 573.73
  19. Douglas, 490.33
  20. Rawlins, 471.01
  21. Worland, 393.03
  22. Buffalo, 360.68
  23. Pinedale, 354.27
  24. Torrington, 342.78
  25. Wheatland, 278.74
  26. Mountain View, 252.51
  27. Newcastle, 231.67
  28. Lyman, 230.29
  29. Lovell, 229.18
  30. Glenrock, 222.63
  31. Thermopolis, 220.73
  32. Moorcroft, 197.26
  33. Kemmerer, 192.82
  34. Burns, 192.61
  35. Tongue River, 192.40
  36. Wyoming Indian, 152.13
  37. Big Piney, 148.90
  38. Wright, 143.32
  39. Big Horn, 140.50
  40. Wind River, 140.48
  41. Greybull, 139.04
  42. Shoshoni, 129.81
  43. Pine Bluffs, 124.47
  44. Rocky Mountain, 123.14
  45. Sundance, 122.34
  46. Lingle, 97.76
  47. St. Stephens, 82.74
  48. Lusk, 81.43
  49. Southeast, 78.51
  50. Guernsey, 78.51
  51. Burlington, 78.13
  52. Saratoga, 77.08
  53. Upton, 75.48
  54. Riverside, 74.33
  55. Cokeville, 70.99
  56. Snake River, 65.69
  57. Hanna, 58.99
  58. Hulett, 53.25
  59. Midwest, 49.53
  60. Farson, 48.24
  61. Dubois, 44.81
  62. Meeteetse, 44.09
  63. Encampment, 40.28
  64. Kaycee, 39.29
  65. Ten Sleep, 33.98
  66. Arvada-Clearmont, 32.65
  67. Rock River, 28.96
  68. Glendo, 12.96
  69. Chugwater, 10.45

Each set of sports will see its own changes.

FOOTBALL (10-12-14-14-rest): Five programs — Big Piney, Wyoming Indian, Guernsey, Saratoga and Riverside — face new decisions, while three others face situations similar to what they have now.

Big Piney moves down from 2A to 1A nine-man, while Wyoming Indian moves from 1A nine-man to 2A. Both can remain in their current classification if they decide to opt up or down, respectively.

Meanwhile, Guernsey will be classified as a 1A nine-man school, while both Saratoga and Riverside will be classified into 1A six-man. Right now, Guernsey plays in six-man, while Saratoga and Riverside both play in nine-man. Guernsey would be the smallest 1A nine-man school, separated by less than one ADM student (78.51 to 78.13) from the largest six-man school, Burlington.

Three schools currently opting up or down will be in positions to continue those choices. Big Horn and Cokeville, both currently opting up to Class 2A, face the same decision for 2022 and 2023, with Big Horn classified in 1A nine-man and Cokeville in 1A six-man. Moorcroft, currently opting down to 1A nine-man from 2A, also faces the same decision in 2022 and 2023.

All opt-up and opt-down appeals are pending WHSAA board approval. Programs that opt down are usually ineligible for postseason play.

BASKETBALL, TRACK, VOLLEYBALL (16-16-16-rest): Six schools are scheduled to make moves in the traditional four-classification sports. Glenrock and Moorcroft are scheduled to move to Class 3A, with Burns and Kemmerer scheduled to drop to Class 2A to take their place. Also, Lingle jumps to Class 2A, while Riverside moves to Class 1A.

GOLF, WRESTLING, CROSS COUNTRY (12-16-rest): Star Valley will move to 4A, with Evanston moving to 3A.

SWIMMING (12-rest): Evanston is scheduled to switch to 3A. No program will replace Evanston in 4A as Star Valley, the school to jump Evanston, does not have a swimming program.

SOCCER (14-rest): Riverton and Green River are scheduled to swap, with Riverton moving to 4A and Green River to 3A.

ALL ONE-CLASS SPORTS: No scheduled changes.

All changes listed here are tentative and subject to WHSAA board approval. Tentative regional and conference alignments will be set prior to the first WHSAA board meeting on Sept. 28. Final approval of reclassification will come in November.

–patrick

Both Lingle and Torrington have forfeited their Week 1 football games, to Wind River and Douglas respectively.

Lingle forfeited its game to Wind River on Thursday; Torrington forfeited its game to Douglas on Friday morning.

Lingle activities director Mike Lashley, when reached by email by wyoming-football.com Thursday, declined to elaborate on the reasons for Lingle’s forfeit, saying only that the Doggers could not field a team this week.

A Torrington High School Facebook post on Friday said the forfeiture was due to “injuries and illness.” Torrington activities director Gabe Bartlett reiterated that in an email to wyoming-football.com on Friday, citing both factors as the reason for the forfeit.

“Just not enough students to safely play the game,” Bartlett wrote.

Also on Thursday, the Goshen County school board voted 5-4 to mandate masks in the schools. The school district website said 189 students were in COVID-19 quarantine across the district, and that 19 active cases of COVID-19 were present among students or staff.

The Goshen County school district spans Torrington, Lingle, Southeast and LaGrange schools. The district had 1,606 students in K-12 last fall, according to the Wyoming Department of Education’s annual enrollment count.

The third of three Goshen County football teams, Southeast, will play its scheduled game today at Shoshoni, the Torrington Telegram’s Andrew Towne reported on Twitter. Lingle and Southeast are both Class 1A nine-man programs, while Torrington competes in Class 2A.

In all, five Wyoming high school football games have now ended in either forfeiture or cancellation. Burns and Thermopolis lost their Week 1 games due to COVID-19, while St. Stephens cited injury and eligibility issues in a Wednesday school Facebook post as its reason for forgoing its Friday game against Lusk.

Note: This story was updated at 11:04 a.m. MDT Friday with comments from Bartlett. This story will be updated as necessary when, or if, new information becomes available.

–patrick

Burns has forfeited its Week 1 game against Mitchell, Neb., after COVID-19 quarantines left Burns unable to play.

Burns High activities director Barry Ward announced the forfeiture on Twitter.

In an email Wednesday with wyoming-football.com, Ward said the exact number of Burns students in quarantine would not be finalized until contact tracing was complete. However, in-person school and sports practice will continue at Burns.

Ward said a decision on Burns’ Week 2 game against Tongue River, the Class 2A East Conference opener for both teams, “will be made when the contact tracing picture becomes clearer.”

Burns was the second team in two days to lose a game due to COVID-19, as Thermopolis canceled its Week 1 game and rescheduled its Week 2 game on Tuesday after moving to online classes for two weeks.

The Broncs also canceled a game and rescheduled another last year due to COVID-19. Burns lost its season opener to Yuma, Colo., last week.

–patrick

Thermopolis will close its schools for at least two weeks and move to online learning immediately, the district’s superintendent announced Tuesday.

Thermopolis will also have two football games “impacted” by the temporary closure — one canceled, one rescheduled.

A Facebook post on the Thermopolis Sports page said the next two weeks of sporting events would be impacted for all sports at the school, including football, volleyball, cross country and golf.

Thermopolis’ football team was scheduled to play Tongue River this week and Big Piney next week. Both games were scheduled as road games for the Bobcats.

In an email with wyoming-football.com on Tuesday, Thermopolis activities director Brandon Deromedi said the Tongue River game would be canceled, while the Big Piney game would be made up at 2 p.m. Oct. 19 in Big Piney. The Big Piney game is a Class 2A West Conference game.

The Wind River Radio Network/WyoToday.com posted a letter from Dustin Hunt, the superintendent of Hot Springs County School District No. 1. In the letter, Hunt said the rise in COVID-19 infections in both Thermopolis and across Wyoming led to the decision.

“It is disappointing to be in a digital instruction period this early in the school year, but unfortunately numbers of students and staff infected with COVID 19, or under quarantine orders has reached the threshold of needed separation,” Hunt wrote.

The Facebook post said at least 30% of Thermopolis’ students were out of school due to illness or “other reasons,” including quarantine. Deromedi said the 30% threshold for moving to online learning and teaching was a district policy.

“We have had some COVID cases,” Deromedi said, “but most students that are out are due to quarantining and proactive measures to stay healthy.”

Deromedi said sports teams will not practice during the next two weeks.

Hunt’s letter said Hot Springs County schools will not require vaccinations or the wearing of masks without a state order to do so.

Thermopolis is the first school in Wyoming this year to cancel games and adjust its schedule due to COVID-19 illnesses and quarantining. Burns, Douglas, Newcastle, St. Stephens and Wyoming Indian undertook similar measures last year, with St. Stephens and Wyoming Indian canceling all fall sports.

–patrick

Want to know how hard an officiating crew can work during the season? Look no further than where that crew sleeps.

Saratoga football coach Logan Wright watched with both surprise and admiration last fall when the Saratoga gym turned into a makeshift hotel for an officiating crew.

The group had officiated a game Friday afternoon in Farson and then a Friday night game in Saratoga. That crew slept in the Saratoga gym that night before officiating a Saturday game in Baggs.

Wright said he appreciates Wyoming’s football officials, especially those willing to sacrifice and do that. But the scenario puts in clear view one of the biggest problems with Wyoming officials — their small number. With a small number of new, young officials joining the ranks, officials are often put in tough situations like the one in Saratoga last year.

In interviews with Wyoming high school football coaches this summer, they all echoed respect and appreciation for what officials do. But the coaches also said the shortage of football officials in Wyoming has affected game times, budgets, the make-up of the crews themselves, and more.

Game times

By far, the biggest challenge schools faced was the variety of start times based on officials’ availability.

“Ideally we’d have every game Friday at 6,” Wright said. ” … It’s not our AD’s fault. You can only play once the refs can get there.”

Six-man programs usually take the brunt of the trickle-down problems, as officiating crews cover Class 4A and Class 3A games first.

“The official shortage has had a bigger impact on the smaller schools,” Burlington coach Travis Aagard said. “It requires tough start times, which makes it hard for the fans to make it to games. Officials are double booked for the day, and the second game is usually a bigger school so they do not want to be late to that game. If the game is lopsided it works out, but if it is a close game with hard calls down the stretch when they are already pressed for time it can be uncomfortable.”

Even with the shortage, Guernsey coach Curtis Cook said some officiating crews will turn down working the Vikings’ six-man games because of the amount of running. Cook said officials have said they can do half as much running in an 11-man game and get paid the same amount. Cook said when officiating crews have a choice between six-man and 11-man, crews choose 11-man — a choice afforded by those low numbers.

“It’s a real thing, and it’s affecting our schedule,” Cook said. “Those Friday night games have almost become a treat. Other (bigger) schools, they get it every week.”

Added Meeteetse coach Zeb Hagen, “We’re one of the few smaller schools that has lights, and we can never turn them on because everyone’s doing the big games on Friday night. … I hate it. I’d rather play on Friday night every week.”

It’s not just six-man; Big Piney coach Ryan Visser said the Big Piney-Lovell game, a Class 2A game, will be played at 2 p.m. in Lovell this season. Because of that, though, Big Piney will have to be on a bus heading north by 5:30 a.m.

With crews often doing back-to-back games, quality can suffer, coaches said.

“You can’t do those back-to-back games and be on the top of your game, so I do think there are some lasting effects in it,” Shoshoni coach Tony Truempler said.

When crews aren’t running from a six-man or nine-man game to a 3A or 4A game, they’re often working two games on the same field in the same day — and that, too, can take a toll.

“We often play a freshman game on Friday before the varsity and the same crew usually has to work each game,” Cody coach Matt McFadden said. “That is a long day for the crew, especially when you throw in travel.”

ADs and coaches all know about the scheduling chase.

Moorcroft coach Travis Santistevan said when schools received schedules, they couldn’t begin scheduling officials until 4 p.m. At exactly 4, the Moorcroft AD, Dusty Petz, starting making calls.

“We literally went through almost everybody and we still had a tough time filling our (officiating) schedules… and that was at like 4:15,” Santistevan said.

Budgets

Many coaches said they look out-of-state to fill gaps in their officiating schedule, pulling in crews from every neighboring state.

However, those crews typically cost more than a Wyoming crew.

For at least one recent game, Wind River had to bring in officials all the way from Fort Collins, Colorado, at a cost of “an arm and a leg,” Cougars’ coach Mykah Trujillo said. Trujillo said he was frustrated that the extra cost had to go to officials from another state more than 300 miles from Pavillion and couldn’t stay with the program somehow.

“It definitely affects our program, especially monetarily,” he said. “Instead of using that money for something else, we’re using it to pay officials to come in from Fort Collins.”

Several coaches in southwestern Wyoming noted pulling crews from Idaho or Utah to make up for the lack of Wyoming crews.

“We only have two sets of officials on this side of the state,” Cokeville coach Todd Dayton said. ” … Then we have to go into Idaho and get officials, so it’s a big problem. I really don’t see anything changing. I wish it would.”

Crew make-up

Coaches identified a couple issues with how crews are put together due to the shortage.

The biggest of those problems is using an understaffed crew to officiate, for example, using four officials instead of five.

Greybull coach Jeremy Pouska said that as an assistant at Riverside last year, “There were a few games where we were understaff for officials. … As much as we want the kids to play fair and honest, a lot can go unseen if we’re understaffed.”

Lander coach John Scott said the problem is severe enough that there’s a possibility that five-man crews in the future could include three officials and then an assistant coach from each team.

Lyman coach Dale Anderson said one problem he sees is that the same crews officiate the same teams over and over. He said having some variety would be nice not just for teams and coaches but for officials, too.

Added Douglas coach Jay Rhoades, “When we go and play around the state, you see a lot of the same guys.”

Several coaches noted this arrangement becomes even more problematic if a coaching staff doesn’t have a good rapport with one of those oft-seen crews.

At the same time, though, the familiarity between coaches and officials does have benefits.

“I’ve been in Kansas and officials don’t even talk to you there,” Dubois coach David Trembly said. “Here, you know them by name and you can talk to them and ask them questions, and I love that about our officials.”

Cheyenne Central coach Mike Apodaca pointed out that one of the problems is that younger officials are being forced to officiate at the varsity level sooner than they would have previously. That lack of depth means newer officials are facing more high-pressure situations, and sometimes officials with less experience struggle with those situations more — and are more likely to leave officiating because of it.

Burns coach Brad Morrison echoed several coaches when he said brought up another problem — older officials stay longer than they used to out of obligation to help with the shortage. However, several coaches said some of the older officials have trouble keeping up physically, which lessens the quality of the game.

Other concerns

WHSAA Associate Commissioner Trevor Wilson said via email last week that the biggest problem is recruiting young officials. He echoed the coaches in their concerns, with poor sportsmanship from coaches and spectators, pay, work obligations, inability to get good games quickly and a lack of training all concerns.

While other sports are struggling to recruit officials, the problem is more acute in football.

Wilson provided data from the Wyoming Sports Officials Association with the total number of officials in each sport. The number of certified football officials in Wyoming peaked in 2012 at 124. Last year, there were 85. However, the total number was more stable — 295 in 2012 to 261 last year.

Lander’s Scott officiates during the basketball season, and he said part of the problem is that basketball officials can work multiple games throughout the week and come close to making it a part-time job. That’s not the case in football, where there are fewer games and therefore fewer opportunities to make money.

Officials’ pay was a consistent theme among coaches. Several coaches noted that increased pay would bring out more officials.

“I’ve been a basketball ref before and it is not an easy gig,” Burlington’s Aagard said. “You start thinking, ‘They don’t pay me enough to put up with this,’ when everyone is critical of your calls.”

Rock Springs coach Mark Lenhardt, the football representative for the Wyoming Coaches Association, said finding former players to become officials is complicated by a variety of things unique to the fall — namely hunting season, fans of UW football wanting to attend games, and the opportunity to do other outdoor activities before winter encouraging would-be officials to do something else besides officiating with their weekends.

Appreciation for the officials

Despite any problems, coaches over and over said they appreciate officials and the work they do.

“Officiating is a sport within a sport,” Burns’ Morrison said. “There is skill involved. Anyone who has never put on stripes should shut up, and let the officials work. It’s a hard enough job without a bunch of 40-something, ex-JV football players screaming insults for an entire game.”

Rawlins coach Clayton McSpadden said coaches in particular need to show patience with new officials. They’re still learning to be officials, and coaches have to give them the opportunity to learn as well, he said. He said those involved can’t expect officials to get entire game right.

“If that’s the expectation, maybe we should stop coaching and go be officials,” he said.

People interested in becoming an official can fill out a short application with the National Federation of High Schools, of which the WHSAA is a part.

–patrick

Photo of Ned Turner posing in a starting position.
Edwin “Ned” Turner poses for a photo while at the University of Michigan in 1932. Turner, a graduate of Natrona County High School in Casper, ran in the 1932 Olympics in Los Angeles, placing fifth in the 800-meter run. Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan.

Exactly 89 years ago today, a Casper native took to the Olympic track at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum and held his own with the best runners in the world.

Today, though, Ned Turner’s accomplishments are nearly forgotten.

Edwin T. “Ned” Turner finished fifth in the 800-meter run at the 1932 Olympics in Los Angeles. He was one of the first, if not the first, Wyoming athletes to compete in the Olympics, a list that includes celebrated names like Rulon Gardner, John Godina, Lance Deal, Heather Moody, Jesseca Cross, Jennifer Nichols and a handful of others.

Turner was just 19 when he ran in the Olympics. A junior at the University of Michigan, Turner had made his mark with guts. A Casper Tribune-Herald article from 1952 noted that “Ned was not a sprint finisher, as are many middle distance runners, but he was noted for his strength, endurance, and untiring running ability.”

Ned Turner's yearbook photo
Edwin “Ned” Turner’s photo from the 1929 Natrona County High School yearbook.

Despite his world-class finish in the Olympics, Turner was never an NCAA champion at Michigan. Moreover, he was only once a Wyoming state track champion, winning the 440-yard run as a junior at Natrona in 1928. He had appendicitis as a senior and missed the entire track and field season while recovering.

But at Michigan, Turner grew and matured; after all, he was just 16 when he graduated from NCHS. He qualified for the Olympics by finishing third in the AAU championships, which doubled as the U.S. Olympic trials, in mid-July. Once at the Olympics, Turner finished third in his opening heat, good enough to make the final race.

The 800-meter final itself put Turner in a field that saw almost everyone, including Turner, run a time that was better than the gold-medal time from the 1928 Olympic 800-meter run. Great Britain’s Tommy Hampson ran a then-world record time of 1 minute, 49.7 seconds to win the race. Turner finished fifth in 1:52.5.

You can watch the race on YouTube here. Turner is wearing a white tank and white shorts and has dark hair, but it’s hard to make him out in the footage as that was the attire for several racers. See full race and heat results here.

Turner led a full, but short, life after his Olympic opportunity. He graduated from Michigan in 1933 and turned to business. In 1952, an article in the Casper Tribune-Herald described Turner as “a successful business executive” in Michigan. Turner worked in a variety of industries, including industrial machinery and paper, and lived in New York in addition to Michigan. Like many young men of his time, his career was interrupted during World War II, when he served in the Navy. Turner died Aug. 17, 1967, in Michigan, a month short of his 55th birthday.

As Wyomingites watch the Tokyo Summer Olympics this month, let’s make sure the name “Turner” stays in the conversation.

–patrick

After several months of preparation and research, I’m proud to announce the newest website to highlight Wyoming’s high school sports history.

Say hi to champlists.com.

The site is exactly what it says — lists of champions for Wyoming’s sanctioned high school sports. But it’s much more than that.

Each sport has its own special area: alpine skiing, cross country, golf, gymnastics, indoor track, Nordic skiing, soccer, softball, swimming and diving, tennis, track and field, volleyball and wrestling. While each sport has individual and team champions, several sports have more than that. For example, soccer and volleyball have all-state team listings and state championship history broken down by school; volleyball has listings for championship coaches; and other sports have listings unique to them.

In short, I’m bringing the wyoming-football.com and wyoming-basketball.com treatment to other high school sports in the Equality State. Although the research for other sports is not as deep or intricate as the research for football and basketball, champlists.com does help fill a gap in Wyoming’s high school sports history.

While the Wyoming High School Activities Association’s website with its sports archive has been incredibly useful, it has also been limited by a reduced range. The WHSAA website does not list champions or results prior to 1973, the year the WHSAA moved from Riverton to Casper, for any sports except football or basketball. WHSAA listings have long been incomplete for sports like cross country, golf, swimming, tennis, wrestling and track. Champlists.com tries to close that gap while at the same time make it easier for people to find specific names, records and details for each sport.

Despite all of my best efforts to this point, many sports have incomplete listings of their champions. Your help is invaluable to completing these lists. Please use this form to send me any missing information you have, as well as any documentation you have to support it, such as a newspaper clipping, yearbook listing or something similar.

In that same vein, champlists.com is a work in progress. If there is something else you’d like to see there, let me know; I’ll see if I can research it, or maybe if we can research it together. I’m going to look for ways to constantly expand the listings that are available to satiate your curiosity about Wyoming’s high school sports history. Broadly, I am planning on updating champlists.com once a year, likely in the summer.

Similarly, I will likely expand the scope of this blog to include occasional posts about other sports, as I have done the past few years with the occasional basketball or track and field post. I have several fun and interesting posts in the works already.

If you’ve made it this far, you care about this kind of stuff. So give champlists.com a look, and let me know what you’d like to see from it moving forward.

–patrick

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