First glance: Breaking down Wyoming

Campus location: Laramie, Wyoming

Nickname: Cowboys

Conference: Mountain West

All-time record vs. Texas: 0-4

Last game: After winning eight games for the first time since 1998, Wyoming dropped its last game of the season to Temple 37-15 in the New Mexico Bowl. Temple rushed out to a 21-0 lead and never looked back.

Last meeting with Texas: The Cowboys came to Darrell K. Royal Memorial Stadium for the 2010 season opener. It was the first home start for Garrett Gilbert. The sophomore threw for 222 yards, including a 45-yard touchdown pass to Mike Davis in a 34-7 Texas win. Fozzy Whittaker and Cody Johnson combined to rush for 108 yards. Texas’ defense held the Cowboys to 58 rushing yards.

Key player: Wyoming quarterback Brett Smith is considered one of the better passers in the Mountain West. The sophomore ranked fourth in most major statistical categories as a freshman: touchdowns (20), passing yards per game (201.7), completion percentage (61) and 20-yard completions (28). Smith’s 20 touchdown passes were the most thrown by a freshman in 2011.

Why Wyoming might win: Texas started slow in the two nonconference home games in 2011, struggling to put Rice away until the second half and beating BYU by just one. Additionally Texas is a team that is not blessed with a ton of senior talent. There are only four senior starters. Couple that with the pressure of high expectations and Texas could be searching for answers against the Cowboys.

Why Wyoming might lose: Texas doesn’t lose to non-automatic-qualifier teams. In fact, at home these games are typically not very close. Since the start of the BCS in 1998, Texas has played 36 non-AQ teams at DKR, and the Longhorns have won all 36 games. In those 36 wins, Texas has outscored its opponents by a total of 1,265 points.