Wyoming’s Chad Muma Named Mountain West Defensive Player Of The Year

On Monday, Wyoming linebacker Chad Muma was named Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year.

Jimmy Orr

November 30, 20213 min read

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(Cowboy State Daily Staff)

On Monday, Pro Football Focus (PFF) released its All-Mountain West teams and eleven Wyoming Cowboys were named on PFF’s First, Second, Third and Honorable Mention teams.  Included among those Cowboys honored was linebacker Chad Muma, who PFF selected as its Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year.  PFF utilizes its grading and advanced statistics systems to make its selections.

In announcing its All-MW teams, PFF’s description of Muma read, “Muma finished the regular season with the third-highest PFF grade at the position at 90.4.  The Wyoming Cowboy is instinctive with a great combination of size and speed at 6-foot-3 and 242 pounds and racked up 59 defensive stops in 12 games, the second-most at the position.”

Joining Muma as a First Team selection was Wyoming center Keegan Cryder.  Cryder started his 43rd consecutive game last Saturday in Wyoming’s  regular-season finale.  Those 43 starts include every game of Cryder’s career, dating back to his redshirt freshman season of 2018.  He has never missed a game during his Wyoming career.

Four Cowboys earned Second Team honors — two on defense and two on offense.  Nose tackle Cole Gobout and cornerback Azizi Hearn were named to the PFF Second Team on defense, while offensive guard Logan Harris and running back Titus Swen earned the same honors on offense. 

Godbout ranked No. 4 among MW defensive linemen in tackles this season, averaging 5.0 tackles per game.  Hearn was a leader of a Wyoming defense that ranked No. 7 in the nation in pass defense, allowing only 177.5 passing yards per game. 

Harris has been a standout on the offensive line for the past five seasons.  He started his 42nd game last Saturday and has played in 53 career games for the Cowboys.  Swen rushed for 737 yards this season, averaging 61.4 rushing yards per game.

Wyoming wide receiver Isaiah Neyor was selected to the PFF Third Team offensive unit.  He led the Mountain West in receiving touchdowns, with 11, and ranked No. 8 in the league in receiving yards, with 791.

Another four Pokes were PFF Honorable Mention selections, led by running back Xazavian Valladay.  Joining Valladay were offensive tackle Frank Crum, linebacker Easton Gibbs and kick returner Cameron Stone. 

Valladay concluded the regular season with 984 rushing yards, just 16 yards shy of the second 1,000-yard rushing season of his career. 

Crum has started 23 of the 30 career games he has played in for the Cowboys and joined with Cryder and Harris to help pave the way for Wyoming to rank No. 2 in the MW and No. 30 in the country in rushing offense (195.1 yards per game). 

Gibbs was second on the Cowboy team this season in tackles.  He had 79 total tackles in the regular season.  Stone burst onto the scene late in the season against Utah State when he returned a kick 99 yards for a touchdown — the second longest kick return for a TD in Wyoming school history.

Other All-Conference teams will be announced in the days to come, including the official Mountain West All-Conference team as selected by Mountain West head coaches and media covering the conference.  That team is set to be released on Tuesday, Nov. 30.

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Jimmy Orr

Executive Editor

A third-generation Wyomingite, Jimmy Orr is the executive editor and co-founder of Cowboy State Daily.