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Comments about ‘Dick Harmon: Self-interest at heart of Utah's decision on rivalry with BYU’

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Published: Saturday, July 14 2012 9:35 p.m. MDT

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4601
Salt Lake City, UT

Greed, cowardice, arrogance. Is that self interest?

Tanyrb
Highland, UT

I assume it is evident to Mr Harmon that everything BYU does in athletics, including going independent, is about self interest, greed etc. So if that is wrong there is plenty to go around. Not a Ute or Coug fan but it is amusing to listen to the accusations being thrown at the Utes that are identical with what is going on in Provo. In this case BYU is upset because it doesn't serve their self interest.

Who am I sir?
Cottonwood Heights, UT

@4601

"Greed, cowardice, arrogance. Is that self interest?" No it's an ESPN contract. It's the cancellation of a traditional rivalry for a period of time (With Utah State) It's demanding two home games against one to renew the USU/ BYU rivalry. Well, maybe it is self interest after all.

pocyUte
Pocatello, ID

One of the better harmon articles.

idablu
Idaho Falls, ID

If you can't play the rivalry game in November, it just doesn't have the rivalry feel. I think a hiatus from the rivalry game might be good for the fans of both teams.

CougFaninTX
Frisco, TX

I'm not sure Utah is entirely to blame for this. Conference realignment has focused on potential media revenue and left out the fans. A decade or two ago, most of the revenue came from fans attending games. It made sense to have conferences geographically based so more fans could travel to watch their team. Now the majority of the revenue comes from media packages.

I think in a few years we will find that this realignment has killed the "goose that laid the golden eggs". Fans are the ones who lose in this new deal. Stadiums will have fewer sellouts - how many Utah fans will travel to Michigan and how interested are Michigan fans in watching the Utes? Fewer sellouts will lead to "blacked out" games, and the media revenue will begin to slip.

All I ask is that someone doesn't forget the fans when making these critical decisions.

Go Big Blue!!!
Bountiful, UT

These are strange times. A much bigger rivalry bit the dust when A&M jumped to the SEC and Texas dumped the annual Thanksgiving Day game. Everyone posturing for a chance to plsy for the national title is what is ruining college football today.

Truth Machine
Salt Lake City, UT

Who am I sir?

Sorry, but Utah State has only been a half-hearted rivalry for decades. The main problem with Utah State is their very small fanbase. Romney Stadium seats 25,000 and the Aggies have struggled to fill the stadium for years. LES seats 65,000 and has averaged over 60,000 for the last 30 years. It makes little economic sense for BYU to continue playing home-and-home games with a school that can't even fill a 25,000-seat stadium.

Utah, on the other hand, has no such concerns with BYU; in fact, BYU's average attendance during the past 30 years has been over 20,000 more than the Utes have averaged and BYU could make a very good case for playing more games and LES than at RES.

Unlike the BYU-Utah series, the BYU-Utah State series wasn't interrupted because the Cougars were afraid to lose to the Aggies.

Jonathan Eddy
Payson, UT

You know what Mr. Hill? This rivalry is nostalgic. It transcends AD's that come and go. This rivalry is for the fans and if you ask Red or Blue, they would say that this rivalry is fun and it is important and that you are a fun sucker. You are less important than the rivalry. Fans and players alike wait all year for this game and you ruined it for both. Someday you will not be an AD. I hope it's sooner rather than later so a self serving AD like you won't get in the way of valued tradition.

Pragmatic
Salt Lake City, UT

I honestly haven't spoken to anybody who really cared that the game wasn't going to be played. It isn't what it use to be. The only people who seem to really care about this rivalry are over 60. Everybody looks out for their best interest. In fact I predict BYU won't even have a football program in a few years. Football is not consistent with the mission of BYU...

AntelopeValleyUte
Palmdale, CA

Basically what Dr. Hill said (to put it politely/bluntly), "I don't care what people think or say about me. Whether people like it or not, I have a job to do as an athletic director in a BCS conference for the UofU; and the only people I report to is the school president, the chancellor, and the PAC-12 commissioner."

While BYU fans and the local media constantly trashed Utah with scheduling and Utah's PAC-12 membership, BYU decided to go the independent route and sign a contract with ESPN for TV exposure. Obviously BYU faithful ignored what BYU did and bashed Utah for it. BYU didn't think about Utah when it signed that ESPN deal, did they? Nope, it is all about its self interest. Wow, how ignorant some Utah haters can be.

collegestudent25
Cedar City, UT

Pragmatic. You need to get out more.

AntelopeValleyUte
Palmdale, CA

Wow, Mr. Harmon, I have to give you props for this article! Perhaps some Utah haters will think twice before beating Utah in their posts to a pulp. BYU looked at as the victim to Utah, made the decision to go indy and sign a long term TV deal with ESPN for exposure. BYU did what was best for BYU's interest. Utah did what Utah did for it best interest. End of story. Some of us need to move on!

PAC 12 loves U
Sandy, Utah

@ Tanyrb

Thank you! You hit the nail right on the head! It is very hypocritical of the DNews sports writers and BYU fans that accuse Utah of acting out of self-interest, when BYU themselves do the same thing to Utah State. BYU's decision to bail out of the MWC was all out of self-interest and jealousy to Utah's Pac-10 invitation.

Let's face it! The rivalry has changed! The meaning behind it is changing. What made the Holy War so special is that Utah and BYU were both in the same conference, bowl games were on the line, conference titles were on the line, and playing their traditional game at the end of November. Now Utah and BYU are not in the same conference and the game is played in September. Their is nothing on the line anymore but instate bragging rights. That's it! Utah can now play for Pac-12 titles, Rose Bowl berths, and possible NC berths. BYU can only play for their contracted bowl game unless they are undefeated like any other mid-major to get a better bowl. Can we drop these silly tantrum articles?

Boston
Spanish Fork, UT

@collegestudent25
No, you are the one that must get out a little more. It wouldn't surprise me at all if the LDS Church decides to drop BYU football by the year 2018. Pragmatic, I agree with you in that the dismissal of the program is a possibility.

Balan
South Jordan, Utah

So what is BYU supposed to do every year there is not a Michigan-type game on Utah's schedule and they decide they want to play BYU??? Is BYU simply to sit back and give in to Utah's every whim - be it playing the game or not?

Utah should not be allowed to singularly dictate when (or if) the rivalry continues. I would hope that BYU has enough pride in who they are to NEVER let this happen.

Howard S.
Taylorsville, UT

Dr. Hill owns the rivalry. He will decide when and if it is played.

There is nothing BYU can do to influence the outcome... BYU must just wait for the decision of Dr. Hill.

Here is the delicious irony...

In its flight to "independence", BYU has become more "dependent" than ever before.

BYU's participation in the rivalry "depends" on decision of Dr. Hill.

Beyond that... There is not a conference team in the country the "depends" on playing BYU. They all have committed conference schedules... they don't need BYU.

In planning an "independent" schedule BYU, on the other hand, "depends" on the willingness of teams that have no need to play the Cougars.

Funny how the appearance of "independence" is not really independence at all... rather just the opposite... BYU depends on everyone... and no one depends on BYU.

catram
North Las Vegas, NV

Ute fans travel? Haha.

Bleed Crimson
Sandy, Utah

@ Howard S.

Your comment was brilliant! You summed up BYU's situation perfectly. I couldn't of said it better myself.

Utah has out grown this silly little rivalry. 55-34-4 is evidence of that! Get used to it little brothers. Utah has bigger fish to fry now.

n8rix
Gilbert, AZ

Can one of the Utah fans please explain how you are okay with Dr. Hill saying "Playing BYU and Michigan is too difficult and unfair to our kids" and how does playing BYU have any bearing on you winning or losing the Pac 12 title? I would love to hear how many of you think this was the correct way to address the scheduling problem 9 conference games can present. I understand the problem but if I were a Utah fan I would expect a better thought out rationale from my AD than this. He set himself up for this firestorm he has caused.

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