Grand­view’s Gen­try bow­ing out in big way

The Denver Post - - SPORTS - By Mike Cham­bers

Wide re­ceiver Tan­ner Gen­try had two schol­ar­ship of­fers com­ing out of Aurora’s Grand­view High School in 2013, from Wy­oming and Air Force. Ei­ther way, he was go­ing to play in the Moun­tain West.

Gen­try chose the Cow­boys, and in his se­nior sea­son they are play­ing for the Moun­tain West cham­pi­onship Satur­day at War Me­mo­rial Sta­dium in Laramie.

Gen­try, a 6-foot-2 se­nior, will en­ter the con­fer­ence cham­pi­onship game against San Diego State as one of the coun­try’s top re­ceivers. He ranks 20th na­tion­ally in yards re­ceiv­ing this year with 1,131 — which is six­th­most in Wy­oming’s sin­gle-sea­son his­tory. He is tied for 15th na­tion­ally in touch­down re­cep­tions with 11, and 21st in yards re­ceiv­ing per game with an av­er­age of 94.3.

“It’s been awe­some — fun to win some games and see some suc­cess,” Gen­try said dur­ing a phone in­ter­view this week. “Also on a per­sonal level, I feel like I’ve done a good job be­ing pro­duc­tive this year.”

Gen­try caught five passes for 112 yards last week­end in Wy­oming’s 56-35 loss at New Mex­ico. The Cow­boys, who up­set San Diego State the pre­vi­ous week in Laramie, clinched their con­fer­ence cham­pi­onship game berth when Air Force beat Boise State the night be­fore at Fal­con Sta­dium.

“We just got beat in all phases of the game,” Gen­try said of los­ing to the Lobos. “I think we’ve moved from that. We rec­og­nized that it hap­pened but I don’t think a lot of what hap­pened last week is go­ing to trans­late to this next game, be­cause they’re two com­pletely dif­fer­ent teams. I just think our team is ready to move from last week and we know we have a big op­por­tu­nity ahead of us in the cham­pi­onship game.”

Third-year Cow­boys coach Craig Bohl, the Moun­tain West coach of the year, said know­ing his team was en­sured a berth in the cham­pi­onship game is be­ing dis­re­spect­ful to New Mex­ico to ex­plain the Cow­boys’ per­for­mance in Al­bu­querque.

“We need to play bet­ter, and we will,” Bohl said dur­ing his weekly tele­con­fer­ence with re­porters. “I do be­lieve we’ve got re­ally good lead­er­ship within this foot­ball team. They’re a gal­va­nized group.”

Wy­oming (8-4), New Mex­ico (8-4) and Boise State (10-2) each fin­ished 6-2 in con­fer­ence games, but the Cow­boys were the su­pe­rior 4-1 in Moun­tain Di­vi­sion games. San Diego State (9-3, 6-2) has ab­sorbed its league losses the past two weeks, to Wy­oming and Colorado State. The Aztecs were 6-0 in West Di­vi­sion games.

Gen­try will fin­ish as one of Wy­oming’s all-time best re­ceivers. His 2,621 ca­reer yards re­ceiv­ing rank sixth at the school, and just 58 yards be­hind No. 5 Ryan McDuffy (2000-03).

“It re­ally went by fast,” Gen­try said of his col­lege ca­reer. “Play­ing as a true fresh­man, that was a blast. Coach Bohl came in and we had a cou­ple years of re­build­ing, which was tough, but with my fi­nal year it’s re­ally start­ing to pay off — all that hard work that we put in and all the tough times we had try­ing to re­build the pro­gram to where Coach Bohl wanted. This year, it’s fun to reap the ben­e­fits.”

Win or lose Satur­day, Wy­oming will play in a bowl game. Gen­try isn’t picky.

“Any bowl game would be awe­some, con­sid­er­ing that I’ve never been to one,” he said. “I re­ally don’t care. Just happy that we’re get­ting the op­por­tu­nity to go to a bowl game, so I would be happy with wher­ever.”

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