Wyoming benefits from Josh Allen NFL Draft hype

By BOB MOEN

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) All the hype about Josh Allen's draft stock has paid dividends to Wyoming athletics.

''Josh brought great exposure to the University of Wyoming,'' Cowboys coach Craig Bohl said. ''... All the speculation on where's he going to get drafted, who is going to draft him and how high is he is going to get drafted is not only going to add a lot of conversations regionally but those are things that are going to move over and it's going to be a national story.''

Many NFL draft analysts have Allen being drafted in the first round, with some predicting he could go No. 1.

Allen has the interest of NFL scouts because of his size and strong arm and the fact that he played in pro-style offense under Bohl, who also coached Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz at North Dakota State before taking the Wyoming job in late 2013.

''The fact that Carson has done so well and now we have another quarterback, I think it piqued a lot of interest as well,'' Bohl said.

Allen's numbers weren't all that great during his final season at Wyoming, completing a modest 56.3 percent of his passes for 1,812 yards and 16 touchdowns with six interceptions. He missed two games because of a shoulder injury.

But Wyoming has never had an NFL prospect of Allen's caliber. In its history, Wyoming has had only three players selected in the first round, the highest going at No. 14 in 1967 when defensive lineman Ron Billingsley was drafted by the San Diego Chargers.

The national coverage of Allen certainly helps with recruiting, and all the chatter about Allen keeps Wyoming in the national spotlight far longer than usual.

''I think over the next couple of weeks here, where sometimes your sports programs may fall off the map a little bit once basketball is completed, there's kind of a gap in there,'' Bohl said.

The NFL Draft is April 26-28 in Dallas.

Bohl will now turns his attention to replacing Allen. Wyoming has three quarterbacks on the roster and just signed a high school prospect from California.

Nick Smith, who will be a senior next season, is the most experienced, filling in when Allen was hurt last season. Smith has completed 67 of 134 passes for 716 yards and four touchdowns over the last three seasons.

''We're going to have open competition this spring,'' he said.

---

For more AP college football coverage: http://collegefootball.ap.org and http://twitter.com/AP-Top25

Copyright © 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. The information contained in the AP News report may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without the prior written authority of The Associated Press.