UW QB says ejection is something to learn from

Associated Press Published: October 9, 2012
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LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) — Outside of a locker room in Reno, Nev., on Saturday, Wyoming's sophomore quarterback declined a chance to discuss in detail the two unsportsmanlike conduct penalties that caused his fourth-quarter ejection.

But this week, Brett Smith was ready. And the quarterback had lot to say.

"I can't put myself in that position, no matter how frustrated I am with what's going on," Smith said. "Despite everything I was mad about, you can't wear your emotions on your sleeve to that extent. It's a situation where you have to keep your composure, and I didn't. And I'm going to regret that for a very long time."

Smith's learning experience was a costly one. Without its starting quarterback, UW let a 28-21 lead turn into a 35-28 overtime loss to Nevada. And it could have been worse. The Mountain West Conference reviews all unsportsmanlike penalties. It could have added additional punishment if it saw fit.

The league told Wyoming on Monday that Smith's suspension would not be extended. Still, Smith said the experience made him examine the difference between playing with emotion and being overly emotional.

"That's not the player I want to be known as," Smith said. "That's not the reputation I want to be known for having. Because I'm not that type of person. When I wear my emotions on my sleeve, that comes with the territory. If I do lose my composure, and do something like that, it can come back to bite you. That's exactly what happened. I take responsibility for it. Right when things happened, I knew I was wrong. I can't let it get to that point."

The circumstances that led to Smith's ejection are debatable. While there are few questions about Smith's first unsportsmanlike conduct penalty, which he received for celebrating an 8-yard touchdown run, Wyoming coach Dave Christensen made it as clear as possible that he disagreed with the second flag.

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