Wyoming Cowboy football spring practice begins Tuesday with all eyes on the impending battle at the quarterback position.

Head coach Craig Bohl and his staff will take the team through their first of 15 practice sessions Tuesday afternoon. Spring practice will take place over a five-week span and conclude with the annual Brown and Gold Spring Game on April 21 at 2 p.m. in War Memorial Stadium.

The Cowboys return eight starters off a play-making defense that led the nation in turnovers forced last season. Leading the way will be senior All-America candidates Andrew Wingard at strong safety and Carl Granderson at defensive end. Add to that returning All-Mountain West honorees in juniors Youhanna Ghaifan at defensive tackle and Logan Wilson at middle linebacker. It’s easy to see why UW is expected to have another strong season defensively.

Wyoming’s offense also brings back plenty of experience with nine starters returning, but the key question is who will replace Josh Allen. Senior Nick Smith and redshirt freshmen Tyler Vander Waal will battle it out during spring practice.

Bohl said in a release from UW,

“I think it’s going to be important for us to evaluate the quarterbacks we have throughout spring drills. That position is such an important position.”

Bohl went on to say that the goal is to have a starter named by the end of spring, that’s what they’re aiming for.

The Pokes are also looking at creating depth at the linebacker position; trying to improve their ground attack; and looking at some younger cornerbacks that will see the field in the fall.

Coach Bohl did announce that corner Tyler Hall may be moving to the nickel back position, so that would create a void at corner, where junior Antonio Hull is coming back from injury that kept him out last fall, plus freshman C.J. Coldon and Keyon Blankenbaker will receive some good looks.

Bohl stated in the release that two players aren’t returning because they’ve been medically disqualified. They are offensive guard Jace Webb and defensive end Shiloh Windsor. Meanwhile long snapper Caleb Cantrell, who appeared in four games last season has also left the team.

Coach Bohl also said he looks forward to this time of year.

“Spring football is probably one of the more enjoyable times I have as a head football coach because you’re not involved in preparing for the schemes you are going to implement against the next opponent, rather you have an opportunity to work with all the players on your roster. They’re all out there competing and learning, and it’s more of a teaching time of year.”

The first practice is scheduled for 4:15 p.m. Tuesday.