Cowboys Bohl announces retirement, Jay Sawvel named new head coach


The University of Wyoming Photo

December 6, 2023 — Wyo4News Staff/Press Release

University of Wyoming Head Football Coach Craig Bohl, announced his retirement today. Shortly after that announcement, current Wyoming defensive coordinator Jay Sawvel was introduced to team members as the new head coach starting next season. Bohl’s final game in his ten years at Wyoming will be the December 30 Barstool Arizona Bowl against Toledo.

Bohl 10-year coaching tenure is the longest in school history. In that time, he led the Pokes to more bowl victories (3) and more bowl appearances (6) than any coach in school history. He also had six winning seasons, the second most of any Wyoming coach, and had more players go into the NFL than at any time in program history. His current overall record going into his final game is 60-60 (37-41 in the Mountain West).

“Being the head football coach of the Wyoming Cowboys has been a privilege,” said Bohl. “I felt like now was the time for me step away and entrust the progam to new leadership. I want to thank all the young men who have worn the Brown and Gold over the past ten years for their dedication and for their passion in representing this football program, this university, and this state. Many thanks to all the assistant coaches and staff who have helped build Wyoming football into a consistently winning program over this past decade.”

New Wytoming Head Fo tball Coach Jay Sawvel (University of Wyoming photo)

About Jay Sawvel

Sawvel becomes the 33rd coach in Wyoming history. He has served as the team’s defensive coordinator and safeties coach since February of 2020.

Currently, the 2023 Cowboy defense ranks #17 in the nation in turnovers gained, #6 in the nation with 11 fumble recoveries, and #24 in the nation for fewest yards allowed per pass attempts. In the Mountain West, Sawvel’s 2023 defense is #2 in scoring defense and #3 in total defense.


“His vision on the future of Cowboy Football energized me, and I feel he will help us reach a Mountain West Championship in the near future,” said Wyoming Athletic Director Tom Burman.

Before coming to Wyoming, Sawvel served as the defensive coordinator at Wake Forest University in 2017 and ‘18.  He was named the defensive coordinator at Wake Forest in January 2017 and helped the Deacons to the 2017 Belk Bowl.

“I’m excited and honored to be the next head football coach at the University of Wyoming,” Sawvel said. “I have loved working and learning under head coach Craig Bohl for the last four years. The infrastructure Coach Bohl has put in this program makes me very excited to be the next leader of this program.”