Utah Utes football notebook: Pac-12 outcomes not surprising to Whittingham
Tom Smart, Deseret News
SALT LAKE CITY — Nothing that happens in the Pac-12 surprises Utah coach Kyle Whittingham.
“There’s a lot of good football teams in the Pac-12 and really if you’re not ready to play just about every week, anybody can beat anybody else,” he said. “That’s not always the case, but most weeks it’s the case.”
Things have tightened in the South Division with USC, UCLA and Arizona State all having two losses in conference play. Arizona has three, while the Utes and Colorado round up the rear with four apiece.
A look at remaining schedules:
USC (6-2, 4-2) — Home (3): Oregon, Arizona State, Notre Dame. Away (1): UCLA.
UCLA (6-2, 3-2) — Home (3): Arizona, USC, Stanford. Away (1): Washington State.
ARIZONA STATE (5-3, 3-2) — Home (1): Washington State. Away (3): Oregon State, USC, Arizona.
ARIZONA (5-3, 2-3) — Home (2): Colorado, Arizona State. Road (2): UCLA, Utah.
UTAH (3-5, 1-4) — Home (2): Washington State, Arizona. Away (2): Washington, Colorado.
COLORADO (1-7, 1-4) — Home (3): Stanford, Washington, Utah. Away (1): Arizona.
SECRET STUFF: It remains to be seen if senior cornerback Ryan Lacy will play on Saturday. Although Lacy participated in Monday’s press conference, he was off-limits to the media following practices on Tuesday and Wednesday — usually a sign that he is injured and not practicing. Whittingham, though, doesn’t discuss injuries any more. On Wednesday, he joked that “we drew straws” as to why Lacy wasn’t able to do interviews.
Lacy has two of Utah’s three interceptions this season, including one in last week’s 49-27 win over California.
ON INJURIES: Whittingham did comment, however, when asked if there were more injuries this season than any other he could recall.
“Probably so,” Whittingham said. “I guess everything goes in cycles, but right now we’ve got a lot of guys banged up.”
FOCUSED ON WAZZOU: The Utes insist they aren’t taking anything for granted this week. The fact that they’re hosting the only team in the Pac-12 without a conference win this season isn’t altering their approach.
Washington State is 2-6 overall and 0-5 in the Pac-12.
“We prepare for the game the same way every week and we respect our opponent always,” Whittingham said. “And I would expect no different mentality from our guys.”
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