Utah's better BCS buster, 2004 or 2008?


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  • Samurai Jake Salt Lake City, UT
    July 25, 2014 1:00 p.m.


    Don't kid self. Bronco never lead cougars to 3 bowl games in first three seasons in PAC 12, in any reality or utah county fantasy. Maybe drink too much brigham tea. Bronco record is not consecutive PAC 12 game. Big difference. Drink mugicha, wheat only. Help think little more clearly in future comment. Banzai!

  • midpacmajor Salt Lake City, Utah
    July 24, 2014 12:18 p.m.

    "Don't be too hard on 65TossPowerTrap. He's still really, really, really grateful that BYU's not in a P5... as his team would be taken to the woodshed week in and week out."

    Utah fans continue to use console themselves with that line of thinking, although Bronco's and Kyle's records versus PAC 12 teams suggests otherwise:

    Bronco 9-9(50%)
    Kyle 13-21(38%)

    With a 50% record in PAC 12 play, plus a gimme game against a Big Sky team, Bronco would have lead the Cougars to 3 bowl games in his first three seasons in the PAC 12, plus BYU would have beaten 10-loss Colorado to win the gift-wrapped PAC 12 South in 2011.

  • PACute_ Salt Lake City, Utah
    July 24, 2014 12:06 p.m.

    The 2004 team was more impressive from a domination standpoint, but didn't play anybody.

    The 2008 team was more impressive from a beating ranked teams standpoint, although that team also struggled against a couple of really bad teams.

    Unfortunately, neither team impressed the poll voters enough to earn a final #1 ranking, which is, or should be, the primary goal.

  • Big J Bountiful, UT
    July 24, 2014 8:29 a.m.

    The 2008 team was better overall (more pro players too). Four teams on the 2008 schedule were better than any on the 2004 schedule. It is a shame the 2004 team was never tested. The 2004 teams “O” was better. The 2008 “O” would have shown better if they just would have ran the 2 minute “O” all game. Brian Johnson was a master at running it. It was his true canvas.

    I loved both teams. What they accomplished was far more difficult than any other accomplishment of any other Football team residing in the great state of Utah. That includes the distant memory of 1984 by a large margin. The 2008 team was also better than any other BCS bustin team, including, by a hair, the Rose Bowl winning TCU team that was also an awesome team!

    Go Utes!

  • high school fan Huntington, UT
    July 24, 2014 12:39 a.m.

    If being a BCS bowl buster is the ticket to a better league then Boise State should have been invited. The question I worry about is the coach fired after another season without a bowl game. Although the Utes are making strides in getting better, so are the other teams.

  • xert Santa Monica, CA
    July 23, 2014 4:59 p.m.

    I think the 04 squad was ever so slightly better, but the 08 team had the better bcs Bowl win. Alabama was a terrific team and they were out to grind the Utes noses in the dirt. During the coin toss, a Bama team captain informed Sly Slyvester that he was simply going to kill him. The 08 Utes not only went out and beat might Alabama---they beat them up and beat them in every way imaginable. If this ends up being the greatest Ute victory of my lifetime? I'll take it in half a heartbeat. Thank you to both of these two squads for opening the door to the Conference of Champions and bringing big time college football to the state of Utah!

  • Tomahawk Red San Francisco, CA
    July 23, 2014 3:15 p.m.

    Central, UT

    Don't be too hard on 65TossPowerTrap. He's still really, really, really grateful that BYU's not in a P5... as his team would be taken to the woodshed week in and week out.


  • Tomahawk Red San Francisco, CA
    July 23, 2014 3:11 p.m.

    American Fork, UT

    Good. I'm glad you feel good with the current state of things.

    I'm glad you got 'scoreboard' on your D-News articles.

    I'm glad you got your ESPN/2/U contract.

    I'm glad you got your satisfaction knowing BYU has a larger fanbase.

    Because that's all there is.

    You don't have a conference. You don't have anything to play for. You don't have any P5 invites. You don't have any respect with the ACC/SEC. You don't have any decent November home games. You don't have sellout crowds at LES. You don't have Playoff or BCS-level bowl access.

    And you certainly don't have any bragging rights whatsoever against Utah. Pac 12, four in a row, 9 of 12, 54-10.

    But I'm glad you got your D-News puff pieces.


  • Mike W Syracuse, UT
    July 23, 2014 1:55 p.m.

    @ hoosier87 - wow, a church-owned newspaper writes more about the Cougars??? What a shock - though I do miss the nearly daily updates on Ezekial Ansah at Lions camp last year.

    It's really too bad the NCAA couldn't get '04 Utah vs '04 Auburn to at least give them one high end opponent. The horrific schedule reminds me of the '84 BYU season (although at least Utah blew away their poor opponents instead of squeaking past them). I pick the '08 team, more NFL talent, tougher schedule.

  • KYUte Louisville, KY
    July 23, 2014 1:47 p.m.

    2004 was the better team, 2008 was the better season.

  • Balan South Jordan, Utah
    July 23, 2014 12:27 p.m.

    2004 was clearly better. 2008 barely got by Michigan and TCU, teams that were clearly better than the Utes. However, Utah found a way to win for which I give them credit.

    2004 was in my opinion the best team Utah has ever fielded.

  • 81Ute Central, UT
    July 23, 2014 11:07 a.m.


    Yes they did and now that you have electricity and maybe radio you can keep up on current events.

  • redthunder Ogden, UT
    July 23, 2014 9:53 a.m.

    Well would you look at that!! D News actually wrote a Utah football article.

    I've got to give the edge to the '04 team. They dominated every team and plus I was able to attend the Fiesta Bowl

  • Mormon Ute Kaysville, UT
    July 23, 2014 9:42 a.m.

    The 08 team had tougher opponents. I pick them as the better team.

  • Condescending Wonka Salt Lake City, Utah
    July 23, 2014 9:27 a.m.


    Yes, as the article clearly stated, Utah played in and won two BCS Bowl games. You're probably unfamiliar with the BCS busting concept, since that's something byu never came close to achieving.

  • 65TossPowerTrap Salmon, ID
    July 23, 2014 8:32 a.m.

    The Utes played in a bowl game? Are you sure?

  • pleblian salt lake city, utah
    July 23, 2014 8:28 a.m.

    2008>2004 because of schedule only. No idea who was better.

    However, I'd rather the Utes give us something to look forward to than always looking back. Those PAC12 stickers are embarrassing, it's like the third stringer wearing a letterman's jacket...he earned it...but...

  • Spokane Ute Spokane, WA
    July 23, 2014 7:39 a.m.

    The 2004 team won more convincingly, but wasn't tested like the 2008 team. The 2008 team played a tougher schedule and tougher bowl opponent. I loved watching the Sugar Bowl and the faces on the Alabama team with that deer in the head light look. They had no idea what they were in for.The got beat up, right in their own back yard. Utah was a 10 point dog going into the game and I won my bowl poll because me and my son were the only ones to take Utah out of 30 people. I always wonder how each team would have done in a 4 team playoff? We will never know. Both teams were great, the 2008 team was slighly better. IMO I long for the glory days; the last two season have been dissapointing to say the least.

    Go Utes!

  • Jefe-Ute SLC, UT
    July 23, 2014 7:10 a.m.

    2008 season! Better teams in the regular season, and a much much much better team for the sugar bowl. Those were the days....sigh....


    Have you ever been outside of Utah? BYU may have fans everywhere, but that's all it is, people who grew up in Utah and now have a job elsewhere. I live in VA and was talking to classmates and when I said I was from Utah they asked about the mighty Utes and their 2 BCS bowl wins. I mentioned I had attended BYU and they asked if it was the mormon school. I said yes. Then they asked if they even had a football team. They all thought that BYU was some DIV-III team....hahaha. So yes, BYU needs to figure out how to let people know they actually have a football team that wants to try and be relevant.

  • gdog3finally West Jordan, Utah
    July 23, 2014 6:52 a.m.

    Beating Alabama in the Sugar Bowl was Utah's biggest victory. However, to me the 2004 team was significantly the better team. The 2008 squad was huge under pressure and found ways to win when extremely tested. We never found out how the 2004 Utes would have done in close games (they had none/all blowouts) and they didn't get the chance to play a quality team in the Fiesta Bowl (shame). If you look at the scores throughout the 2004 schedule, even that is misleading because Utah had the reserves/back ups in by the third quarter in half their games. The closest game they had that year was a 14 point victory over Air Force, which Utah actually trailed 14-0 before outscoring the Falcons by 28 points the rest of the way. Utah was up 41-0 at halftime to Utah State and took the gas off the petal at halftime (Final score 47-6). The defense was better than many think that year as well. Yes 2008 was a stellar defense. But most the points scored on Utah in 2004 was when the second string was in during the 4th quarter.

  • UCONN Storrs, CT
    July 23, 2014 4:14 a.m.

    Hoosier, oddly enough with all the ESPN "exposure" talk from BYU around here, Utes fans have ESPN's PAC-12 Blog as well as weekly tv coverage on the PAC-12 to turn to for more extended coverage of their team. But I'm glad you're happy with what you have.

  • East Coast Ute Storrs, CT
    July 23, 2014 3:48 a.m.

    2008 SEASON was "better" because the games were much more exciting and against better opponents, but the 2004 team was a better team. Heisman finalist at QB, 3 other future pros on offense, and a handful of pros on defense. Both very memorable to watch, though.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    July 23, 2014 2:50 a.m.

    I think as far as on the field accomplishments go it has to be the 2008 team. Highest ranked mid-major under the BCS system, only TCU in 2010 comes close.

    @Hoosier87: "I was just thinking the other day, as a BYU fan, it sure is nice to read ten to fifteen new articles every week about the Cougars..."

    Being a "Power 5 brand, and tradition" or Big 12 invite is on the cusp or poor Jimmer who just needs a chance.

    We'll you see Utah doesn't need to speculate after each Power 5 rumor and we have Grandpa Miller who doesn't need DN hype to justify his NBA worth.

  • 10of17 Taylorsville, UT
    July 23, 2014 12:46 a.m.

    I think 2004 was a better team (eye test), but 2008 had a more impressive season due to the schedule difficulty. Important fact nobody mentions; the 2004 team was one of only TWO teams in the last 45 years of Div 1A college football to beat every opponent on their schedule by 14 points or more. Think about that. Only happened twice in almost 50 years. That's a lot of easy schedules and great teams, but only two teams pulled it off. The other was Nebraska '95. One of the most dominant teams of all time. Would the Utes of 2004 pull that off with a difficult schedule, no, but nobody else has accomplished it with easy schedules over the last 45 years.

  • UU Provo, UT
    July 22, 2014 11:34 p.m.

    The 2008 team accomplished more with 4 wins against ranked teams (TCU, OSU, BYU, Bama) however the 2004 team was more dominant albeit on a weaker schedule vs. the 08 team. As eagle pointed out the closest game in 2004 was a 14 point win against AFA and that's only because the Falcons scored a meaningless touchdown with 20 seconds left in the game.

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    July 22, 2014 11:19 p.m.

    @ Hoosier87

    9 out of every 10 BYU articles are about the Big-12 not expanding to include BYU. The other ten percent is split between player profiles, player suspensions, and possible scandal/impending sanctions. The reason you don't see many Utah stories is because there just isn't much to report this summer. In this case, that is a good thing.

  • 79Ute Orange County, CA
    July 22, 2014 11:05 p.m.

    2004 was a better team, I think, but 2008 was a better win. I attended the Fiesta Bowl, but watching the Sugar Bowl was far more exciting than being in Tempe in person because although we were the underdog against Alabama we dominated. I loved watching Barry Switzer churn after his pre-game and halftime comments that Alabama wouldn't have recruited a single player on the Utah roster.

  • Naval Vet Philadelphia, PA
    July 22, 2014 11:04 p.m.

    The 2008 Utes had the better season, but the 2004 Utes had the better team.

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    July 22, 2014 10:31 p.m.

    2004 offense was unstoppable, but the 2008 D was solid. I may be in the minority, but I would pick 2008 to win if they were to play. That team just refused to lose.

  • eagle Provo, UT
    July 22, 2014 10:15 p.m.

    The stats don't lie, the 2004 team was better. Their closest game I believe was a 14-point victory. Alex Smith, though I love Brian Johnson, was a more talented QB. They didn't get a worthy opponent like Alabama for a bowl game but I would imagine if they did, the Utes would have done well.

  • Hoosier87 American Fork, UT
    July 22, 2014 10:00 p.m.

    For the 3 or 4 Ute fans that will comment on this article (although they will comment 10-12 times apiece), I'd say the Alabama victory was MUCH more impressive.

    O' the glory days - how quickly they pass...

    I was just thinking the other day, as a BYU fan, it sure is nice to read ten to fifteen new articles every week about the Cougars. Cause I love hearing about the program (both basketball & football). Because of the enormous fan base we have, we need this kind of coverage.

    Then I thought of the one to two articles a week we see for the Utes. I think that's about right - one to two articles a week is actually almost too much for their fan base.

    But here we are - so I say 2008. Kruger was an animal. Alabama is always tough! Nice job Utah

  • cougarsrock Springville, UT
    July 22, 2014 9:52 p.m.

    Both were great years for the Utes but as they say be carefull what you wish for ! Both of those great seasons were in the MWC . My guess is it will be literally years if and when the Utes ever see a BCS caliber bowl game again !