SALT LAKE CITY — While the Utah offense hasn't exactly been saving plays all season, waiting to spring some new ones on TCU this week, don't be surprised to see a much more innovative and diversified offense this week — at least much more than last week at Air Force.
Coach Kyle Whittingham made that clear in his remarks early in the week when he said the Utes "have to open up the entire offense." He also said, "Jordan Wynn will have the entire offense at his disposal."
Whittingham admitted that the Utes were conservative last Saturday against the Falcons because they wanted to keep the ball-control AFA offense off the field. That's why the Utes ran the ball, mostly up the middle, on 11 of the first 12 plays on the opening drive.
Wynn, the Utes' quarterback, indicated the Utes will be opening up the playbook this week.
"We haven't run a lot of stuff," Wynn said. "We've run very few plays. It will be fun to open it up and show what we really have. The offense is going to open it up and that's exciting.
"We've pretty much stuck to a core group of plays that we own as an offense," Wynn added. "It will definitely be fun to get out there and show (more plays)."
But hold on just a minute. Don't expect the Utes to suddenly be pulling out triple reverse passes back to Wynn or tackle-eligible passes from Eddie Wide to John Cullen.
Offensive coordinator Aaron Roderick doesn't want to put a damper on Wynn's excitement, but says the Utes will "just play our normal offense" against TCU.
"We try to have a couple of wrinkles every week, but most of our offense is in," he said.
Roderick said the Utes have more than 100 plays they've worked on this year and that they usually try to carry 70-75 plays into each game. Of those plays, the Utes may only use 75 percent "from the menu" during the actual game.
One thing Roderick said was not to expect a bunch of crazy plays this week from the Utes.
"We're going to run what got us here," he said. "The biggest mistake we could make would be to trick ourselves by trying too hard. You don't want to put in too many new plays or too many tricks. You want to run what got you here."8 comments on this story
Roderick said most games the Utes try to have an even blend of pass and run plays, about 50-50. If you look at the season stats, it's 56 percent run plays to 44 percent passes. However, it was closer to 50-50 before the Utes ran the ball 51 times against Air Force with only 23 pass plays.
So will we see some plays this week that we haven't seen all year?
"That's always possible," Roderick said with a smile.
But he believes the Utes mostly have to execute their usual offense to have a chance to win.
"We're a good offense and we've had a lot of success this year. We've won eight games doing what we do," Roderick said. "TCU's not going to change their defense for us and we're not going to change our offense for them. The best team is going to win."