Comments about ‘Recipe for success: How Stanford built its program, and Utah can do the same’

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Published: Friday, Oct. 11 2013 8:55 a.m. MDT

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Chris B
Salt Lake City, UT

Whittingham has said since day 1 we'd have to improve our recruiting to be a player in the Pac 12, and that HAS happened.

Our MWC days we'd be beaten by just about every Pac 12 team in recruiting.

Look at the last 4 years:

2010 - 7th in Pac 12
2011 - 6th in Pac 12
2012 - 7th in Pac 12
2013 - 9th in Pac 12

And these are vastly better than what we were getting before our Pac 12 invite. Furthermore, our worst year in recruiting in the last four years is BETTER than byU's BEST year in recruiting in the last 4 years.

Now some of these kids that we've recruited are on missions, and others have redshirted and still have several years left in the program.

Point is, recruiting is HUGE, even though our friends in Provo try to convince themselves they are building a national title team with 1-2 star nobodies.

Also, last 4 years Utah has won the HEAD to HEAD recruiting with byU every year as well.

Even kids that used to be automatics for byU are picking Pac 12 Utah more often than not these days.

Chris B
Salt Lake City, UT

Some food for thought:

Last 4 years Alabama has had an average 3.7 star recruiting classes
Utah 3.0
byU 2.6

Yes, stars matter. Any individual kid can obviously be a hit or miss, but OVERALL the recruiting services get it right. And YES, its' better to have better players.

And before you byU fans go crazy, did I say higher stars guarantees wins? Did I say a lower star team never wins?

I'm simply saying the best teams usually have the best coaches AND the best athletes.

I haven't seen a national championship team full of 2 star nobodies lately.

And that's not a coincidence.

Eagle Mountain, UT

Some reasons that the Stanford model will not work at Utah.
1. Academic standards are already much lower at the U and they still struggle to have less than 1/3 of their recruits be ranked with 2 stars. They rarely get a 4 star player to come to the U.
2.The U has to take the best athletes they can get and try to fit the teams style of play to their players. If they recruited to a certain type of playing style, their average star ranking would be around 2.2.
3.The U has no recent winning tradition to help lure better players.
4.In 2014 the U has offered 52 football scholarships. Stanford offered 33, BYU offered 21. When a school has to offer that many scholarships to fill their roster, it looks bad to the recruits. A recruit has to wonder if the team want's them or if they are just shotgunning to get a body for an open position on the roster.
5.The only thing the U has going for them is the PAC, and most teams in the PAC have more of everything to offer.

Eagle Mountain, UT

Last 4 years of Utah recruiting according to scout.com, the most respected and widely used recruiting service.
2010- 2.64 stars 3.04
2011-2.9 stars 2.53
2012-2.69 stars 2.67
2013-2.54 stars 2.23
2014 is shaping up to be about the average of the last 4 years.
Utah has been consistently about 1/10 of a star better than the Y over the past 4 years.

BYU also ranks much higher in rival fans who demonstrate their insecurity and obsession by mentioning BYU in comments even when BYU is not mentioned in the article.

Cheyenne, WY

Commits this year. BYU 1- 4 star 5- 3 stars 8- 2 stars Utah 1-4 star 5- 3star 3- no stars.
BYU rated from ten to 15 spots higher. Recruits so help, but Alabama is not always number 1, so they should only win 4 years after they are number 1? Utah beat Alabama and was in the top 5 with a 2.5 star recruiting?
I admit Utah will continue to get better recruits most years and has been since the days of Mcbride, but they are ranked within 10 of each other.
You need to realize BYU only recruits people that will obey their honor code, that probably eliminates 85% percent of recruits right off, so even when they were a powerhouse team they didn't get great recruits. I respect BYU for sticking to what they believe. 2.6 to 3.0 on the 5.0 scale is only 8 percent not a huge difference between the two.

Cheyenne, WY

9 out of BYU 14 commits have offers from BCS schools. 4 out of Utahs 11 have offers from other BCS schools. BYU class is also ranked higher. And Cody Hoffman was a 2 star commit now a NFL bound receiver.

Chris B
Salt Lake City, UT


byu has more total kids committed for 2014. Some schools get kids to commit a lot sooner than others. You're not comparing apples to apples. But if you look at their average ranking, AGAIN Utah is higher.

Good try on the spin though.

2014 Utah 2.88
2015 byu 2.5

And since you're apparently confused about which is higher, 2.88 > 2.5


Chris B
Salt Lake City, UT

From rivals recruiting:

2010 Utah 3.09 > 2.78 byU
2011 2.95 Utah > 2.58 byU
2012 3.04 > 2.87 byU
2013 Utah 2.96 > 2.31(OUCH) byU

So in order from highest to lowest the last 8 recruiting classes for Utah and byu

1. Utah
2. Utah
3. Utah
4. Utah
5. byu
6. byu
7. byu
8. byu

That's right, byu's best year in the last 4 is still worse than Utah's worst recruiting class

Yes, I do love my Pac 12 membership. No 2.31 recruiting classes for us

Think that has anything to do with Utah going 4-0 against byU in that time?


Sandy, UT


Your "stats" don't hold up to inspection.

Jackson Barton - many BCS offers
Kyle Christiansen - byu offer
Kenyon Frison - many BCS offers
Allan Havili - many BCS offers
Donovan Isom - BCS offer(Miami)
Raelon Singleton - BCS offer

6 of 11 had BCS/byu offers

Austin Chambers - 1 BCS offer Kansas
Tyler Cook - BCS offers
Cedrick DAle - 1 BCS offer Texas Tech
Kavika Fonua - Utah offer
Teancum Fuga - BCS offers
Kurtz - good pickup(if he stays committed)
Michael Shelton - 1 BCS offer
Sione Takitake - BCS offers
Fred Warner - BCS offers

Byu 8/14 commits with BCS offers 57%

It appears you're numbers are manipulated for both byu and Utah. And guess who has the higher AVERAGE STAR recruiting class for 2014(since its not finalized yet)? The University of Utah. You guys like exposure don't you? Well, you just got exposed.

Cheyenne, WY

That is because No star recruits don't weigh on the average. Since 2011 Utah has lost to USU ASU OSU Arizon and UCLA which all have had worse classes than the U. UCLA had the 45th ranked class two years ago. They number 11? Fresno St. #84 Northwestern # 87 NIU # 78 Stanford # 22 all these teams have way out performed their ranking.
Underperformed Texas #3 USC #4 Auburn #7 Tennesee #13 Cal #17.
Dude rankings do matter but not that much. Utahs best team in 2008 was not a good "star class" Northwestern was on the doorstep with Ohio State 70 spots difference. Fresno State is this years Utah # 84. It is coaching and attitude. I have been involved in college athletics for over 10 years. Our best teams have never been the highest rated recruits. You can recruit speed and talent but it only goes so far with coaching. That is why I say Utah and BYU can compete with anyone anytime. That is why you play the game. P.S. Utah beat Utah this year because of great coaching on both sides of the ball. BYU coaching struggled against the utes.

Cheyenne, WY

@ Chris B
are you going to ignore discussing the fact 9 of BYU 14 commits have BCS offers, While only 4 of Utahs 11 have gotten the same?

Sandy, UT

BeSMart, I'm a BYU fan but I'm siding with Chris and Ken on this one. If we believe BYU is as good as Utah, you can't not include the BYU offers in the Utah commits but include Utah offers in the BYU commits. If our whole argument is that simply being in a BCS conference doesn't mean anything, lets stay consistent with that. You show your bias is as bad as Chris's when you don't count byu's offers to Utah commits but do count Utah's offers to BYU commits. Don't be like Chris.

Besides, it seems Chris's whole argument is that of average stars for a team, which I certainly would agree is a better indicator of talent than number of kids with BCS offers. And he's right, Utah's 2014 class is still above BYU's.

Samurai Jake
Salt Lake City, UT

Utah has already been building a stronger program.

2014 will be their breakout year in the Conference of Champions.

That being said, they can still win the majority of their remaining games. The future is looking very bright for the U!

Go Utes!

Cheyenne, WY

ok last 4 years recruiting class ranking Pac-12
So by your own philosophy Utah will always be a doormat?
BYU would be too I am just saying Coaching had nothing to so with winning?
Have you played sports?
Were the classes leading up to 2008 Utah top 5 classes?
Why if Stanford can have some of the worse Pac-12 classes be a top 5 team?
USU beat Utah with a lesser quality class (must be the world's largest miracle)

Oregon State has beat you with lower ranked classes (its the end of the world)
Northwestern who averages a very low class is top 25 and almost beat Ohio State (oh my coaching may matter).
Your philosophy although it has great points and the majority of the time is right. Playing the game does matter or else they would not play it.

Las Vegas, NV

Once again, a UTAH story turns into Chris B vs the UC trollers. Tiresome!!

Nice article Dan.

Great hire DN - keep up the good work!!

Go Utes!

Onward and Upword!!

Cheyenne, WY

I am not saying that Utah's talent is worse than BYU's. Utah will always have more. Recruiting is not all of college sports. That is why you play the game.
I want Utah to do well, but trying to say any team can beat another any day. That is why the game is played.

Cheyenne, WY

P.S. I don't include BYU offers in the Utah stats because BYU is not in a BCS conference.

Salt Lake City, UT

What does byu have to do with any of this?


Hopefully the Utes can keep their heads held high after Saturday and finish out the season strong (of course besides the Oregon game). I can see Utah beating Arizona, USC, Colorado, and WSU to finish with a 7-5 record. ASU is a maybe, only because of their loss to a ND team that I don't think is that great and a blowout loss to Stanford. The last two years ASU has had our number so I'm not expecting much. I'm really excited for this Utah team and hope that Murphy heals quickly and well. I wish we would have used him more often this year.

Park City, UT

"How Stanford built its program, and Utah can do the same"

Concerning Utah, a resounding - NO!

Despite their denials, the Utes are destined to be the next Arizona - 30 years in the conference and still looking for their first Rose Bowl.

Eventually, the Utes will get their "signature" win/upset. The odds are simply in their favor, like a 10-2 UNLV shutting out the Utes. One of the "big boys" will have an off day and the Utes will be the lucky beneficiaries.

As far as being a perennial contender, not a chance. Utah will have to get lucky just to finish with a winning conference record once every four or five years.

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