Utah Utes football already missing inspirational 'honorary coach'
SALT LAKE CITY — Utah football lost somebody special Saturday night.
Jay Rudd, a fixture around the program since 2003, passed away at the age of 37. His funeral is set for Saturday from 1-3 p.m. at The Fellowship (615 E. Sego Lily Dr.) in Sandy.
"Jay Rudd was a very important part of our program," said Utah coach Kyle Whittingham. "We all loved him. He was a joy to have around and very inspirational. We are going to miss him."
In his obituary, it's noted that Rudd "excelled at bringing inspiring and motivating talks to the players" at Utah. Whittingham considered him an "honorary coach" who loved being around the team. Jay, he added, was always enthusiastic and regularly gave speeches after Thursday practices.
"I miss him already," Whittingham said.
Rudd began his association with the Utes while attending the same church as the parents of former player Josh Savage. He told them what a big Utah football fan he was and they made arrangements for him to attend a practice.
"The rest is history," Whittingham said. "He fit in right away, and we kind of adopted him at that point and time."
- Dick Harmon: Time running out for Dave Rose's...
- Utah Jazz: Analyzing 3 trade possibilities as...
- Rise and Shout: "Jeopardy!" contestants...
- Morning links: Kyle Van Noy, Eric Weddle...
- 13 locals invited to 2016 NFL Scouting Combine
- Utes return home and handle Huskies, 90-82,...
- BYU's Fischer questionable for game at San...
- BYU football hires former player Jack Damuni...
- Morning links: BYU, Virginia fans share... 44
- Doug Robinson: Peyton Manning sells out... 43
- Dick Harmon: Time running out for Dave... 42
- Dick Harmon: BYU's Sitake wants former... 40
- Nick Emery's freshman season at BYU... 39
- Rise and Shout: "Jeopardy!" contestants... 36
- Dick Harmon: BYU's Harvey Unga to... 33
- 13 locals invited to 2016 NFL Scouting... 28