BOULDER, Colo. – It’s not only a special weekend on the campus of the University of Wyoming because it’s Homecoming, but also a time when the Wyoming Rugby family will remember and celebrate the life of former player and coach Cody Anderson. The evening of Sept. 16, the Cowboys will take on Regis University of Denver in the first annual Cody Anderson Memorial Game.
A back-row forward for the Cowboys from 2004 to 2007, Anderson passed away this past April.
“Cody was a fantastic rugby player, member of the West All-Star team in 2004 that won the National All-Star Championship, and a heck of a leader,” remembered Wyoming Head Coach David Finnoff, who was proud to have Anderson on his coaching staff.
Anderson’s love of rugby, especially at the University of Wyoming, led him to join the women’s program in Laramie, Wyo., as an assistant coach. After helping guide Wyoming’s women to the round of 16 in back-to-back seasons as an assistant, Anderson brought the Cowboys back to national prominence again in 2012, this time as the team’s head coach. Following the highly successful season leading the women’s program, Anderson joined Finnoff’s men’s team as the defense and forwards coach.
“He instilled a dedication, self-reliance, physical and mental toughness that made good teams great,” Finnoff recalled. “He demanded and was able to get the best out of everyone on the team, who universally loved him and his unique style.”
The tragic loss created a void in the Wyoming Rugby community, but also meant the loss of a caring husband and unconditionally loving father.
“As impressive as his rugby and professional accomplishments were, he was an even more amazing father to his daughter, Kingslea,” Finnoff admired. “His love and dedication to her were lessons to us all. Kingslea’s smile and joy of life will keep him forever in our thoughts.”
Following the match against Regis, a contest between Wyoming and a group of heavy-hearted alumni will take place, many of which were either teammates with or coached by Anderson.
The Rangers of Regis enter the fixture against the Cowboys 1-2 out of Rocky Mountain’s Division II. After a season-opening win over New Mexico, Wyoming moved to 1-1 following a 65-12 loss to No. 6 Utah. The Cowboys will pick up West Conference play Oct. 24 against No. 19 Colorado State.