Utah football: Whittingham went to In-N-Out and had a Double-Double to celebrate his 75th coaching win
Full transcript, audio and video of Kyle Whittingham press conference
Reporter: Coach, I just had a question about your offensive line. Watching Poutasi, one series, he kind of had a letdown. He got beat on a speed rush on the inside, and then after that, seemed to just clean things up. I saw help from the half back. I saw also some of the scheme that ran at Murphy, but can you just tell me about his performance in particular, how he came back from those moments and then how the offensive line graded out?
KW: Yeah, Cedric's still a young kid, and you know he's just a true sophomore. He did have a couple bad snaps early in the game. We got him on the sideline. Coach Finn got in his ear and gave him some encouragement, I guess you could say, and he responded and played the rest of the game very well. It was a situation where he got a little bit more motivation and upped his level of play.
The offensive line as a whole I thought played exceptionally well. What was the second part of your question?
Reporter: Yeah, just how they graded out.
KW: How they graded out, yeah. They all graded out, as I recall, I think three of them were in the 90s and two in the high 80s. Our goal is to have them all grade out at 90 or above. That would be ideal for us, offensive line play-wise, or winning level. You don't rush for nearly 200 yards without good offensive line play. We were only sacked one time — another indicator of how well the offensive line played for us Saturday.
Reporter: This will be one of the only questions from me as far as kicking goes, but where did you find this kicker again? When did you know, Kyle, that he was going to be perfect through this many games?
KW: Ah, well. OK. When did we find him? He sent a tape to us. I say us. It really came straight to Jay Hill. I want to say not last summer, but the summer prior. He was a skier obviously. He was on the Olympic Ski Team or was getting ready to be on the Olympic Ski Team, and joined the program. He was not really anything sensational when he first joined the program. You know, he's gotten better since he got in our program, and that's a credit to Coach Hill in coaching him up and helping him develop.
We had a feeling in fall camp that we may have stumbled upon a pretty good kicker. We had no idea for sure because he hadn't kicked in front of anybody — ever — at any level. There were a lot of unknowns in that respect. In spring ball, there really wasn't that much separation. It wasn't until fall camp that he started to pull away from the rest of the kickers, and we were thinking, "Hey, we might have a guy that's pretty good for us." And then, as the season started to unfold and he just made kick after kick after kick, it's just continued. We're very excited about it.
We no longer go to the soccer fields for kickers. We got to the slopes to try to find those guys.
Reporter: Coach, in these close games, the team has remained fairly composed and confident. Can you talk about the team leadership this year as opposed to maybe years passed, and how does that lead to the remainder of the season?
KW: The leadership this year has been outstanding. I think I've referenced that a lot in the first six weeks of the season, and it starts with Trevor Reilly. He's the team leader and the guy that really is the leader of the leaders.
I met with the seniors. I mentioned that after the game. I had a meeting with the seniors last week, and they're just a great group. They're a pleasure to coach, they're tough, they're competitive, they want to win in the worst way. That's something that's really been apparent through the first six games through the season, and we need that to continue. We expect that to continue.
Reporter: What do you see defensively from Arizona? What do they do?
KW: 33 stack. I think that everywhere RichRod's been he's got the 3-3 scheme going. They're very athletic. They've got a really good linebacker, inside linebacker, really good corner. I haven't had a lot of time to spend on their defense, but they're good and they play a lot of quarters coverage, a little bit of zone pressure. Most of the pressure is 5-man stuff, either zone pressure, or what we call "50": 5-man pressure with man coverage behind it.
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