Cowboys sign 20th FBS transfer

Published 11:41 am Monday, July 8, 2024


With camp opening just two weeks away, McNeese State reached a milestone in recruiting last week.

The Cowboys added their 20th player from the Football Bowl Subdivision level when they signed cornerback La’Vario Wiley, who played the last two seasons at Central Michigan.

Email newsletter signup

Wiley, a 6-foot-1, 185-pounder, played in 21 games for the Chippawas out of the Mid-American Conference over the last two years. He started seven games, recording 29 tackles, 19 of them solo. 

He also had three pass breakups. 

Wiley played high school in Los Angeles and began his career at Cerritos College just outside L.A.

Wiley should add depth and experience to the McNeese secondary, which like the rest of the team has seen a major influx of talent after last year’s 1-10 campaign.

“We are pretty excited about this class and our late signings,” McNeese head coach Gary Goff said recently. “We have brought in a lot of talent that has experience.”

The Cowboys report to camp Sunday, July 21 with their first practice coming three days later on the 24th. 

If you are going to attend the workouts you better bring a fresh roster. Over 50 newcomers are expected to take the field as McNeese looks to take a major step in rebuilding. 

The biggest addition for the Cowboys is quarterback Clifton McDowell, who last year led Montana to the national title game on the FCS level. McDowell will be the fourth different opening-day starter for the Cowboys at QB.

There are also new faces at running back and wide receiver, though they are familiar to local football fans. 

In January McNeese signed wide receiver Curtis Deville, a transfer from Purdue who played at Iowa High School. More recently the Cowboys added Tre’Vonte Citizen, a running back from Miami who was a star at Lake Charles College Prep.

“All the guys we brought in have confidence, having played at a high level,” said Goff. “We knew (after last year) where our deficiencies were. We went out to correct them.”

McNeese will get a jump on the new season when it opens play Week Zero at Tarleton State. The game is set for Aug. 24 at 2:30 p.m. and will be broadcast on ESPNU. 

The Cowboys will play 12 games this season and will open their home schedule the following week against Southern University. Season ticket sales are ongoing for McNeese home games while single-game sales start on July 29.