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Brad Rock: How the Utes can go to a bowl and save Whittingham

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  • Hank Jr Draper, UT
    Oct. 10, 2014 6:35 p.m.

    There's still the Miami Bowl vs. BYU.

  • bradleyc Layton, UT
    Oct. 10, 2014 10:10 a.m.

    I Hope that Utah goes to a bowl. I read the comments from Ute fans on cougar articles and I hope they grow up but as far as Utah goes I really hope the Kyle wins a couple of more games and they go to a bowl. Good luck Utah.

  • bc1050 Sandy, UT
    Oct. 4, 2014 9:28 a.m.

    If the couch cannot get it done this year its then time to begin looking for a new head couch... what was the name of the couch that took the Utes to the cotton bowl and won? it is amazing what a excellent couch and staff can do.

  • Down under Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 19, 2014 3:37 p.m.

    A very real possibility this year. Looking like another 2-7 pac campaign this year.

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 11, 2014 2:27 a.m.

    @AZUTE1
    Please....This is merely the ncaa method where they only produce the previous year's collective record, in order to gauge sos for the following year....It's pure tripe....Alabama will play against a sec schedule and Oklahoma will do the same against a Big-12 schedule and will both have a sos ranking light-years ahead of byu's.

    ---------------

    .....yawn.....ute SOS blah blah blah. Ute fans finish one season with a top 10 SOS and they all of a sudden try to pretend that it's an annual thing. This coming season could be a 2nd yr but we won't know until after the season is played.

    It's like Duckhunter said, pre-emptive excuse making by ute fans for their expectation of having another losing record. The Pac12 is unusually strong from the middle of the pack to the top of the conference. It won't last forever. Recent coaching hires have made middle of the pack and lower tier schools like UCLA, ASU, Wash St and AZ unusually strong. In a year or two some of their coaches will move on to seek their fortunes in the NFL and things will revert back to normal.

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 11, 2014 2:12 a.m.

    @Truthshamwich
    Sagarin's national strength of schedule rankings for last year:

    #1 STANFORD
    #2 AZ STATE
    #3 UTAH
    #4 CAL
    #5 WSU
    #6 COLORADO
    #7 UCLA
    #17 UW
    #18 OREGON STATE
    #21 USC
    #29 OREGON
    #31 ARIZONA

    The weakest schedule in the Conference of Champions was the 31st strongest in the nation. You'll need to look all the way down to the 8th spot before you even get out of the PAC 12.

    ---------------------------

    And last year BYU's SOS was 38th toughest. They managed that while only playing 2 Pac12 schools and didn't have the built in advantage of getting a schedule of 9 Pac12 games handed to them. BYU's SOS was better than Alabama and National Champion Florida St.

    As for the collective SOS for Utah and the Pac12 last year, that was an anomaly and not the norm. Utah's SOS in the previous 2 Pac12 seasons was well into the 40's (which is still not bad compared to other p5 schools). The Pac12 is on an up-tick right now but it won't last forever. All things go in cycles.

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 7, 2014 5:34 p.m.

    @ Rockwell

    "Says who, a fanatic on the hill?"

    Uh, no. Do you really not understand what is happening right now in the world of college football? The P5 conferences are not being very subtle in creating a huge divide between the Power conferences (where Utah is) and everybody else (where BYU is). BYU doesn't have a prayer of being allowed to compete in the playoffs, especially with a schedule like they have this year.

    The past two seasons are not going to define Utah's entire football future. Like I said, there is an ebb and flow.

  • Spokane Ute Spokane, WA
    Aug. 7, 2014 5:08 p.m.

    @ Y's Little Brother

    Actually the folks on the inside are the Power 5 conferences and Notre Dame. The folks on the outside is everyone else.

    You may want to read the article regarding the NCAA's decision today before popping off. Enjoy the Beach Ball Bowl, because that's as good as it's going to get. Normaally I would feel bad for BYU, but folks like your self, Rose Bowl Call, Rockwell, etc. have changed my position. It couldn't happen to a more deserving fan base. Karma!..and I love it!

    Have a good evening!

  • Rockwell Baltimore, MD
    Aug. 7, 2014 3:54 p.m.

    2fer

    "BYU is on the outside looking in. They are a victim of the system, and they have the same chance of playing for the Stanley Cup and they do of begin selected for the CFB playoffs."

    Says who, a fanatic on the hill?

    "Utah is in, and all it has to do is win..."

    Good luck with the winning part; 9-18 in the PAC and only one winning season since joining the PAC tells us all we need to know about Utah's prospects there.

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 7, 2014 1:33 p.m.

    @ scott

    BYU is on the outside looking in. They are a victim of the system, and they have the same chance of playing for the Stanley Cup and they do of begin selected for the CFB playoffs.

    Utah is in, and all it has to do is win which makes Utah's chances of going to the playoffs much better than BYU's. What makes you think that a one-loss Utah team with a top 10 SOS won't get considered? That is a great resume for a P5 team. Also, Utah is not going to be down forever. There is an ebb and flow to college football and it's wasn't too long ago that Washington St. was in the Rose Bowl and CU had won back to back conf. titles. Utah is going to have its day in the sun as well.

  • Y's little brother Sandy, UT
    Aug. 7, 2014 11:41 a.m.

    "It's pretty obvious who's on the outside looking in!"

    The team sitting at home on the couch during bowl week.

  • never break .500 Los Angeles, CA
    Aug. 7, 2014 10:14 a.m.

    yes, the strength of schedule is what counts for the Utes. Of course they will lose 7 or 8 games…maybe nine games if FSU upends them too. But what matters is how big the blowouts are and if a few of the games are close. That's what being a Ute has come to mean. Go Utes. You could have a spoiler here and there.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Aug. 7, 2014 10:02 a.m.

    A couple of things, if utah's schedule is ranked around the top 10, and oregon's is below 100, yet they both play a very similar schedule with 6 common oppenent's, what is it that makes oregon's so weak while utah's is so strong?

    Simple, they play each other and what that means is oregon brings utah's sos up, a lot, while utah makes oregon's drop, a lot.

    But what it also shows is that pre-season SOS litterally means nothing. utah "fans" like to brag/whine about utah's sos and use it for a pre-emptive excuse for utah's pending poor season but the truth is it is nothing more than a subjective ranking, and rankings are something utah "fans" claim are not legitimate when BYU is ranked higher than they are.

    It is an amusing fact that "rankings" are only considered legit by utah "fans" when the ranking can somehow be used as an excuse or a justification for poor performance by utah's teams or else when utah is ranked higher than BYU in something. When rankings don't fit the utah "fan" false narrative they apparently lose legitimacy.

    lol

  • scott Alpine, UT
    Aug. 7, 2014 8:14 a.m.

    2fer

    "Is BYU a P5 team? Utah fans don't have to hope anything. BYU never being able to qualify for a playoff is reality."

    Sorry to burst your BYU-hating crimson bubble, but BYU has just as good a chance of qualifying for the playoffs as Utah has of having another undefeated season and winning the PAC 12, which is the only way the Utes will ever be considered by the selection committee.

    Utah being nothing but a perennially mediocre, two-hit, flash-in-the-pan wonder is reality - only five AP Top 25 finishes in your entire history if proof of that.

  • NevadaCoug Overton, NV
    Aug. 7, 2014 1:10 a.m.

    8 pages of childish, rubbish comments.

    So, a poster claimed BYU fans were claiming Utah would get rolled by the Tide in their BCS match up. Nope. Maybe there were a few, but most of us knew the Tide shouldn't take the Utes lightly. Sure, we didn't expect Utah to win in the fashion they did, but we knew it was possible. You see, back then Utes and Cougars were on the same page in protesting that the "Power" conferences weren't on the completely same page they claimed. Unfortunately, many Ute fans have sold out.

    Yes, the PAC-12 is a very strong, very competitive conference right not. However, these things are cyclical, as we all know. And Utah hasn't had quite the same level of teams they had in their two BCS-busting seasons. If they did, they would do better against the competition.

    This year's Ute team? Probably not good enough, but we won't know until they actually take the field, will we?

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 7, 2014 12:24 a.m.

    @ Marked it Down

    Is BYU a P5 team? Utah fans don't have to hope anything. BYU never being able to qualify for a playoff is reality.

  • Marked it Down Park City, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 10:20 p.m.

    truthsandwich

    Ute fans desperately hoping that a scenario where BYU qualifies for the playoffs never happens.

    Just the thought that something so unthinkable could happen, sends shock waves of fear through Ute Nation.

  • truthsandwich The Bubble, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 5:09 p.m.

    Coug fans desperately dreaming of a scenario where an undefeated Pac 12 Champion doesn't make the playoffs:

    Highly entertaining.

  • Spokane Ute Spokane, WA
    Aug. 6, 2014 5:01 p.m.

    Doubting that an undefeated Oregon, or PAC 12 team, would make the playoffs? Now that's funny stuff right there.

    It's pretty obvious who's on the outside looking in!

  • CordonBleu Park City, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 4:46 p.m.

    truthsandwich

    How do you know that Texas, Houston, and UCF won't turn out to be as highly ranked as Michigan State, Stanford and UCLA, and if that happened, wouldn't BYU have proven something about themselves by going undefeated?

    What if BYU beats Texas, and Texas ends up winning the Big 12 championship? Wouldn't BYU have proven something about themselves by beating one of the P5 conference champions?

    For fans like AZUTE1 to unequivocally state that BYU wouldn't come anywhere even remotely close to qualifying for the playoff is laughable, considering all of the variables that could happen.

  • truthsandwich The Bubble, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 4:13 p.m.

    Sagarin's national strength of schedule rankings for last year:

    #1 STANFORD
    #2 AZ STATE
    #3 UTAH
    #4 CAL
    #5 WSU
    #6 COLORADO
    #7 UCLA
    #17 UW
    #18 OREGON STATE
    #21 USC
    #29 OREGON
    #31 ARIZONA

    The weakest schedule in the Conference of Champions was the 31st strongest in the nation. You'll need to look all the way down to the 8th spot before you even get out of the PAC 12.

  • skywalker Palo Alto, CA
    Aug. 6, 2014 3:47 p.m.

    truthsandwich

    With all of the analysis, I doubt that any team will "sneak" into the playoffs, but just like the NCAA basketball tournament, some teams will exceed expectations, and some teams will fall short, once they get to the playoffs.

    The "favorite" doesn't always win it all.

    One thing is certain, with five P5s, plus Notre Dame, plus a possible "mid-major", plus a possible 2nd team from the SEC, 1 or 2 or even 3 P5 conference champions are going to be left out of the playoffs every year.

    It's not going to take long before fans from the P5s left on the outside looking in start screaming for the playoffs to be expanded to 8 teams.

    IF, one of those teams turns out to be an undefeated conference champion Oregon in 2014, no doubt, some of those fans will be some of the same Utah fans who have been so confident about the PAC 12 champion always being a lock for the playoffs.

  • Spokane Ute Spokane, WA
    Aug. 6, 2014 3:18 p.m.

    @Sportsfan

    Why would a concern of mine, be a concerned to yours? Especially when it's not even a concern; just a comment. I was merely commenting on, rose bowl call yet's comparison of the schools last year. It appears he left out some information in the comparison. Thank you for your concern though; but I believe the D News does a fine job of moderating the thread.

  • truthsandwich The Bubble, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 3:11 p.m.

    "Would Oregon (#107 SOS) deserve an invite to the playoffs if the Ducks win the PAC 12 championship?"

    The Ducks have to play UCLA, Stanford, and Michigan State, which means unless those other teams turn out to be overrated Oregon would certainly have proven something about themselves by going undefeated. I will be shocked if their SOS is still #107 at the end of the year. If they play in the Pac 12 championship that would also add to their strength of schedule.

    It also depends on the resume of the top teams from the other conferences, and what they have proven on the field at that point.

    The beauty of a playoff is if a team happened to sneak in by beating a schedule of nobodies, all they have proven is that they are better than the nobodies, but they would then have a shot to prove something in the first playoff game against a legitimate team. If they lose, they would be exposed as a fraud and just getting to the playoffs wouldn't have been that great of an accomplishment. If they win, then they have done something to prove they deserve a shot at the National Championship Game.

  • AZUTE1 Mesa, AZ
    Aug. 6, 2014 2:54 p.m.

    "SOS will be a factor, but this isn't a computer-based bcs ranking system. It's up to each of the 13 voting members to decide how much of a factor SOS will be as they rank teams 1 through 25."

    Please....byu could go undefeated this season, in your fantasy, and their sos would literally prevent them from coming anywhere even remotely close to qualifying for the playoff....See Uva/U/Wisc/Nd/Uw from last season as a prime-example.

  • AZUTE1 Mesa, AZ
    Aug. 6, 2014 2:50 p.m.

    "Lets look at the top 15 SOS and their records last year"

    Please....This is merely the ncaa method where they only produce the previous year's collective record, in order to gauge sos for the following year....It's pure tripe....Alabama will play against a sec schedule and Oklahoma will do the same against a Big-12 schedule and will both have a sos ranking light-years ahead of byu's.

  • Just the FAX Olympus Cove, Utah
    Aug. 6, 2014 2:34 p.m.

    Uteology

    The football playoff selection will consider a number of factors, including SOS, in choosing the four playoff teams, but what's your source that they will use the "NCAA method" for ranking SOS?

    Committee member Mike Tranghese said:

    "We are going to see teams play so there is the eye test. It isn't as if we are computers and this is exactly how you do it. I may look at strength of schedule a little differently than someone else, and that could have an influence on how I ultimately vote."

    Bottom line:

    SOS will be a factor, but this isn't a computer-based bcs ranking system. It's up to each of the 13 voting members to decide how much of a factor SOS will be as they rank teams 1 through 25.

  • TheSportsAuthority Arlington, VA
    Aug. 6, 2014 2:08 p.m.

    Uteology

    Despite your reluctance to accept it, a #107 SOS ranking for Oregon doesn't seem that far off:

    2014 Power Rankings

    #203 South Dakota
    #3 Michigan State
    #110 Wyoming
    #67 @Washington St
    #44 Arizona
    #15 @UCLA
    #24 Washington
    #124 California
    #13 Stanford
    #48 @Utah
    #91 Colorado
    #43 @Oregon State

    4 Top 25, 4 +90, 4 40-70

    Average Power Ranking of Oregon Opponents: 65.4

    which could very well be #107 when compared to the average power ranking of every other team.

    Of course, SOS will change for every team as soon as the season starts.

    Remember when Utah was slated to played #1-ranked USC before the season started, and ended up playing an unranked USC, according to end of season rankings?

    So, will you change your opinion of whether an undefeated, PAC 12 champion Oregon "deserves" a playoff invite if the Ducks do indeed finish with a 100+ SOS?

    Can't wait for the spin.

  • docdages WEST VALLEY CITY, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 1:38 p.m.

    Lets look at the top 15 SOS and their records last year

    1. Arkansas – 103-54, 65.61% (3-9)
    2. Virginia – 102-54, 65.38% (2-10)
    3. Tennessee – 101-54, 65.16% (5-7)
    4. Notre Dame – 103-56, 64.78% (9-4)
    5. Texas A&M – 100-55, 64.52% (11-2)
    6. Kentucky – 98-55, 64.05% (2-10)
    7. Iowa State – 97-57, 62.99% (3-9)
    8. Syracuse – 96-57, 62.75% (7-6)
    9. Rutgers – 97-58, 62.58% (6-7)
    9. Wake Forest – 97-58, 62.58% (4-8)
    11. Utah – 98-59, 62.42% (5-7)
    12. West Virginia – 97-59, 62.18% (4-8)
    13. South Carolina – 96-59, 61.94% (11-2)
    14. Miami, FL – 96-60, 61.54% (9-4)
    15. Boston College – 95-61, 60.90% (7-6)

    40% had winning records last year and 60% had loosing records.

    Alabama has the the 95th strongest schedule and Oklahoma has the 93rd. Both of them are considered as teams that have a good chance to be considered to be picked for the playoffs. No one will say they did not play anybody.

  • TheSportsAuthority Arlington, VA
    Aug. 6, 2014 1:29 p.m.

    Uteology

    "Curious, who has ranked Oregon's 2014 SOS at #107?"

    RealTimeRPI
    NCAA Men's Football - Team Power Rankings (2014-2015)
    [Last updated - Thu Jul 31 22:30:49 PDT 2014]

    #8 Oregon (SOS #107)
    #39 BYU (SOS #78)
    #48 Utah (SOS #11)

    Your rankings are obviously out of date.

  • backpacn Sandy, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 1:01 p.m.

    Uteology

    Sorry, but you obviously don't understand what a "correction" is.

    Kyle having had only had ONE 11+ win, Top 15 season;
    versus
    Bronco having had THREE!

    is an absolutely true statement.

    Kyle has had one great season, and very little else.
    Bronco has had three very good seasons, better, in fact, than all but two seasons in Utah history.

    Your "IF" conjecturing is meaningless.

  • backpacn Sandy, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 12:21 p.m.

    2fer

    You obviously haven't looked at Oregon's schedule.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 6, 2014 12:20 p.m.

    @TheSportsAuthority
    Arlington, VA

    What, no takers on Rose Bowl's question?

    Would Oregon (#107 SOS) deserve an invite to the playoffs if the Ducks win the PAC 12 championship?

    -----------

    This isn't 1984, they wouldn't get a playoff spot.

    Curious, who has ranked Oregon's 2014 SOS at #107? A Cougar fan?

    Using the NCAA Method Oregon's schedule is ranked #49, BYU #97, Utah #11.

    Source:
    2014 College Football Strength of Schedule – NCAA Method
    By Kevin Kelley - April 1, 2014

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 6, 2014 12:06 p.m.

    @SportsFan

    The truth is, in 9 seasons as Utah's head coach, Kyle has only had ONE 11+ win, Top 15 season;

    Bronco, by comparison, has had THREE!

    ----------

    Correction, Kyle had ONE 13 win Top 2 season.

    Bronco, by comparison, had 50,000 Quest t-shirts printed for what Kyle accomplished.

    This year Bronco will have his fourth 11+ win season. Yet, if Kyle does go 7-5, with one of the toughest schedules in the nation, then it will be more impressive than ALL of Bronco's 11+ wins seasons combined.

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 11:33 a.m.

    @ TheSportsAuthority

    If Oregon ended the season with an SOS of 107, then no they would not deserve a spot in the playoffs. I'm wiling to bet the Ducks have an SOS in the top 30 after this season though. Last season I believe Arizona had the lowest SOS in the conference at 31.

  • backpacn Sandy, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 11:01 a.m.

    Uteanymous

    You don't understand.

    Oregon is in a P5 conference, so of course the PAC 12 champ is automatically included in the playoffs, except, hmmm, only four automatic spots available...

  • Uteanymous Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 6, 2014 10:18 a.m.

    TheSportsAuthority

    How could Oregon have such a horrible SOS (#107) if the Ducks play in the mighty PAC 12?

  • Mormon Ute Kaysville, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 10:08 a.m.

    Duckhunter,

    I don't recall mentioning BYU in any of my comments. I believe you first brought up BYU in one of your responses to me. In any case, I don't dispute what the Ute's record reflects, but I believe they are closer to success in the Pac 12 than some people give them credit for.

  • TheSportsAuthority Arlington, VA
    Aug. 6, 2014 9:50 a.m.

    What, no takers on Rose Bowl's question?

    Would Oregon (#107 SOS) deserve an invite to the playoffs if the Ducks win the PAC 12 championship?

    I'm surprised Utah fans aren't all over that one, since they're soooo concerned about BYU's #78 SOS.

  • SportsFan Orem, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 9:38 a.m.

    Spokane Ute

    If Utah's supposed primary goal is winning the PAC 12 and playing in the Rose Bowl, why would no mention of the score of last year's BYU-Utah game be of concern to you?

  • Spokane Ute Spokane, WA
    Aug. 6, 2014 9:02 a.m.

    @ Rose Bowl Call Yet

    "And Utah fans continue to prove that the Utes would rather beat BYU than go to a bowl."

    ----
    Yet here you are, on a Utah article, comparing BYU to Utah's season last year. With a screen name of a bowl that only Utah can go to. Now that's curious! I also notice among all of your stats and rankings, there's no mention of the score of last years game. Also very curious.

  • SportsFan Orem, UT
    Aug. 6, 2014 8:53 a.m.

    @John Locke

    It's hilarious how thin skinned Utah fans are anytime an article is posted that doesn't worship at the feet of the Mighty PAC 12, "Conference of Champions" Utes.

    btw, it's laughable how desperate Utah fans try to give Whit credit for Urban Meyer's 2004 team.

    The truth is, in 9 seasons as Utah's head coach, Kyle has only had ONE 11+ win, Top 15 season;

    Bronco, by comparison, has had THREE!

  • John Locke Ivins, , UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 11:26 p.m.

    Seems like every year, in the last three years, Rock says it is Coach Whit's "last year as the Utah HC,". That's the kind of media pressure you don't find in the Salt Lake Tribune. But...

    People forget that Whit went to the Fiesta Bowl with Alex Smith, a 2 Star QB; whipped Pitt and ended up 13-0. How come no one recruited Smith out of HS? How about Brian Johnson, who took the wind out of the sails of Alabama and Saban? Johnson wasn't ranked in the top 25 dual threat QBs in the nation, and was a 17 year old when he entered Utah, but he was there in the Sugar Bowl in the end...with Coach Whit, and a 13-0 record. Should have been No. #1. Only undefeated team in the nation that year.

    Rock writes things about Utah sports on a BYU sports page just to stir things up. He wrote about Coach Krystkowiak before he had a chance to prove himself, and now with Whit after two 13-0 seasons. Yeah, I know Meyer was there for one, but, same ole', same ole. It gets old.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 5, 2014 11:01 p.m.

    @skywalker

    Any Utah fan who claims that he didn't breath a sigh of relief when Taysom Hill's final pass fell incomplete with no time left on the clock simply isn't being honest.

    -------------

    Sigh of relief of not CHOCKING the game away, yes!

    While you were praying for a miracle, we didn't need to. We had the lead the entire game.

  • Rose Bowl call yet? Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 10:24 p.m.

    truthsandwich

    And Utah fans continue to prove that the Utes would rather beat BYU than go to a bowl.

    LOL at your Sagarin ranking comparison:

    #34 Utah, #35 BYU

    In the 2013-14 RPI rankings:

    #38 BYU, #44 Utah

    And in the newly minted NCAA Men's Football - Team Power Rankings (2014-2015)

    #39 BYU (#78 SOS), #48 Utah (#11 SOS)

    by comparison, SOS rankings for other teams

    #87 Michigan State
    #107 Oregon
    #90 Ohio St
    #97 Miami
    #84 Wisconsin
    #62 Washington

    Will Oregon deserve an invite to the playoffs if the Ducks win the PAC 12 championship?

    What the Cougars proved against Washington in their bowl game was BYU was good enough to play in their 9th straight bowl game, which is alot more than can be said of the Utes.

  • truthsandwich The Bubble, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 5:34 p.m.

    @ Duckhunter

    "utah showed us what they were last year, a mediocre team with a losing record that didn't go to a bowl. That is what they are and will continue to be until they can show us differently. Deal with it because it is fact."

    And BYU showed they continue to be incapable of beating that "mediocre" team which is why their "fans" are reduced to ankle biting teams who play much more difficult schedules and finish with a better Sagarin ranking. Deal with it because it is a fact.

    Keep bragging about that bowl game though! The cougs definitely proved something against their middle-of-the-Pac bowl opponent.

    lol

  • Former Coach Payson, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 3:33 p.m.

    Ok let's be honest. I was very confident after the first quarter. I was still confident on the last possession knowing Hill had struggled throwing and I knew a score meant overtime and not a loss. I don't think Byu goes for two. Now please tell at what point did you think BYU was going to win? Several of you have stated flaws in my take of that game but no one has answered my question. Since we are talking about being honest, did any of you worry about Utah busting one big play and blowing the Cougars out. In my opinion Utah was as close to doing just that as they were to losing.

  • skywalker Palo Alto, CA
    Aug. 5, 2014 2:37 p.m.

    Former Coach

    As Just the FAX already stated, any Utah fan who witnessed 4th and 18 would know how precarious Utah's 20-13 lead was with BYU in possession of the ball at their own 38 with 2:49 left; and lets not forget, BYU got the ball back at their own 48 with 0:32 left.

    Any Utah fan who claims that he didn't breath a sigh of relief when Taysom Hill's final pass fell incomplete with no time left on the clock simply isn't being honest.

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 2:32 p.m.

    Utah has played something like half a dozen conference games over 3 years with their day 1 starting QB healthy. Small wonder they've had struggles. Just one more win each of these three years would be PAC-12 championship appearance and bowl games the past two years.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 2:25 p.m.

    @former coach and uteology

    former coach it is telling how one sided you see things, as if things were done at some point that early in the game. uteology whining about a legitimate call tells us all about his delusion, especially considering BYU had a TD called back on a phantom "holding" penalty that no one can find on any replay, you both conveniently ignore that.

    Listen utah won the game, but to try to pretend that they controlled it throughout is ridiculous, to try to pretend that a game is over when your opponent has the ball with time on the clock and down only one score is delusion at its highest degree.

    utah showed us what they were last year, a mediocre team with a losing record that didn't go to a bowl. That is what they were, no amount of rationalization or trying to tell yourself "what if" is going to change it. Losing team, losing record, no bowl. That is what they are and will continue to be until they can show us differently. Deal with it because it is fact.

  • Former Coach Payson, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 1:56 p.m.

    @Just the Fax,

    Same question for you, when did you think BYU was going to win? My comments never said game in the bag, my comments said Utah led from the second quarter on and the entire game against BYU and Colorado. Now in the close loses the games were back and forth with Utah losing the leads. Read the last statement of my post. Us Utah fans are optimistic that we can hold the leads this year and win those games. I am also wondering where Utah loses to BYU if the Cougars score on that last possession. Do you think Bronco would have gone for 2?

  • Former Coach Payson, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 1:47 p.m.

    @talkinsports

    I stand corrected, Utah led 13-6 going into the 4th quarter. It took a little over two minutes to finish off the drive the started in the 3rd. They were up 20-6 with 12:44 to go in the 4th. Let see how observant you are. What did Utah do defensively almost the entire 4th quarter? What team was one dimensional the entire 4th quarter? Who controlled the time of possession? Who averaged more yards per play.? I observed lots in the game. Perhaps the best question for you is this, "At what point and time during that game did you really believe BYU was going to win?" I will answer, I believed Utah was going to win when BYU didn't score in the first Quarter.

  • deductive reasoning Arlington, VA
    Aug. 5, 2014 1:17 p.m.

    2b

    "Right PAC man just like they did last year..."

    As any financial advisor will tell you, past performance is not an indicator of future outcomes, especially when 3 of the last 4, and 14 of the last 17 BYU-Utah games have been decided by a touchdown or less in the final minutes or in overtime.

    btw, unlike Utah, BYU didn't have to pretend that the Cougars would have played in a bowl game last season, or the season before, IF...

    Whether you want to accept it, or not, 4-5, 3-6, 2-7 is bottom feeder status in any conference.

  • Just the FAX Olympus Cove, Utah
    Aug. 5, 2014 1:10 p.m.

    Former Coach

    You claimed that "The score looks close I agree. However when looking closer at the actual game it is not what it seems." suggesting that the score was much closer than the actual game.

    If you weren't trying to suggest that Utah had the Stanford game won in the 2nd quarter, then why even mention that Utah lead from the 2nd quarter on?

    ------------------

    Uteology

    BYU was only down 20-13 with possession of the ball and a couple of minutes left on the clock. Any fan who claims that Utah had the game won at that point is not being intellectually honest - 4th and 18 should tell you all you need to know about how precarious Utah's lead was at that point in the game.

  • Former Coach Payson, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 12:13 p.m.

    @Marked it Down

    Show me where I said they had the game in the bag. Also show me where Stanford led after the second quarter. Did I not say they held on to win? Thank you for reassuring my point. Utah held on to win that game. Also I do realize that Utah would have lost that game had Stanford completed that pass.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 5, 2014 12:01 p.m.

    @talkinsports

    Utah only lead 13-6 entering the 4th Quarter and BYU had a chance to tie the game late in the fourth before Hill's pass was intercepted with 1:37 left in the game.

    ----------

    Utah 20
    BYU 6
    4th Qtr 7:09

    At that point, Utah had just iced the game on a 3rd and 10 play. Until a bone-headed reaction by Row and even a more ridicules call by the PAC-12 refs considering the same penalty could have been called on BYU numerous times throughout the game:

    3rd and 10 at UTAH 44Taysom Hill pass incomplete to Kaneakua Friel, UTAH penalty 15 yard Unsportsmanlike Conduct on Eric Rowe accepted for a 1ST down.

    You were bailed out by a poor judgement call, that's all.

  • LDS Cougar Provo, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 11:30 a.m.

    I see utah losing to Michigan, Stanford, Oregon, Oregon State, ASU, UCLA and USC. They will probably win against Idaho State, Fresno State, Arizona, Colorado and WSU. That's 5-7 again.

  • Bluto Sandy, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 10:30 a.m.

    Wowza...Wowza!!

    You know you are now officially embedded as a Bottom-Major...Conference Doormat, when your
    "Seasons Quest for Relevancy" is only to manage to win enough games, to be granted
    one of "78" Bowl slots.

    My how the "False Bravado" has fallen!

  • 2BCSWINS West of I15, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 8:24 a.m.

    @Yisirrelevant..... "BYU and now USU have created a brand of winning on the national stage"

    LOL

    @PAC man...."You're half right. It'll be good for Utah because the Utes will at least have a fighting chance versus Fresno State; Taysom Hill and company would have mopped RES field with the Utes this season."

    Right PAC man just like they did last year, the year before that, the year before that, etc. It's good they don't play for cougie fan's like you becasue you can have the pretend win in your head just like every pre-season until Utah of course wins the game on the field where it actually matters.

    By the way love the screen name it screams out your jealousy of the U....LOL!

  • Marked it Down Park City, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 7:50 a.m.

    "They took the lead for good against Stanford at the end of the 2nd quarter and never trailed again."

    Is that why Bill Riley went nuts on the radio when Utah knocked down Stanford's pass in the end zone to preserve Utah's narrow 27-21 win?

    And is that why Utah's "official radio station" continues to play that sound bite daily?

    Because Utah had the game in the bag since the 2nd quarter?

    You do realize, don't you, that if Stanford had completed that final pass, the Cardinal would have had a 99% chance of winning the game?

  • 81Ute Central, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 7:36 a.m.

    @Rose Bowl call yet?

    I am glad that you are happy and thrilled with the schedules (read easy opponents) and the bowl games that BYU will get to play in. However, thinking longer term, BYU will not be playing after the first of December in the future. When the playoff expands to 8 teams the bowl games will become a casualty of said expansion. Even an undefeated season against such a weak schedule will not warrant an invitation to the playoff. Enjoy it while you can. Hopefully, BYU will be able to schedule meaningful opponents in the Novembers of the future. Even if the Utes don't get invited they do play many quality teams every season and that makes for interesting and enjoyable (frustrating too) football. I also hope the Coach Witt is retained by the U regardless of this seasons outcome. What this state needs is more unemployed Y grads, right?

  • talkinsports Gilbert, AZ
    Aug. 5, 2014 7:34 a.m.

    Former Coach

    "The score looks close I agree. However when looking closer at the actual game it is not what it seems. Utah had 2 score leads on all three of these teams going into the 4th quarter."

    Nice spin, but for a "former coach", you don't seem to know your "facts" very well and you overlooked a lot in your analysis.

    Utah only lead 13-6 entering the 4th Quarter and BYU had a chance to tie the game late in the fourth before Hill's pass was intercepted with 1:37 left in the game.

    First Downs
    BYU 24, Utah 16

    Total Yards
    BYU 443, Utah 402

    Passing
    BYU 260, Utah 273

    Rushing
    BYU 183, Utah 129

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 5, 2014 1:14 a.m.

    "It has appeared to me that the U was more focused on beating BYU than winning their conference championship."

    Absolutely. That BYU game in September totally distracted Utah when CU came to town at the end of November.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 4, 2014 11:58 p.m.

    Duckhunter
    Highland, UT

    @uteology

    Their opinion is what is subjective, but I'm not even saying they didn't make some improvement last year. You're truly struggling here. But whether or not they improved while everyone that beat them did not is extremely subjective, and frankly a pipe dream.

    ------------

    I'm struggling? Where did I say everyone that beat us last year did not improve?

    In fact, I have claimed, like the article I quoted, that Utah has a good chance of getting TWO more wins (7-5) this year. Even Athlon Sports, has Utah improving by TWO PAC-12 games, which predicted Utah 4-5 (6-6 overall).

    Pipe dream is "not" having to hide out in Tulsa for a week after yet another loss, everything else is possible.

  • water rocket Magna, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 10:55 p.m.

    I like to be optimistic about our Utah teams, and for USU and BYU, I think there is plenty of reason to be this year. As for Utah, well, that is a different matter. Changing Offensive coordinators every year for the last four years makes it impossible for the offensive side of the ball to have any kind of consistency, and a head coach that always uses the OC as an excuse for loosing doesn't exactly inspire confidence in his assistant coaches.

    When Utah joined the PAC 12, I had some very high expectations for them. I actually felt that they would be contending for the conference championship right away, but apparently playing with the "big boys" was more intimidating than I thought. It has appeared to me that the U was more focused on beating BYU than winning their conference championship. I don't see any thing different this year, except that they don't play BYU, so there will be no reason to boast, unless they can win a few more conference games. Good luck there while adjusting to yet another OC.

  • Former Coach Payson, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 10:48 p.m.

    @Duckhunter,

    You mention the close wins as being Colorado, BYU, and Stanford. The score looks close I agree. However when looking closer at the actual game it is not what it seems. Utah had 2 score leads on all three of these teams going into the 4th quarter. They never trailed against BYU or Colorado. They took the lead for good against Stanford at the end of the 2nd quarter and never trailed again. Now against OSU and ASU, Utah had leads late and could not hold them. The same can be said for USU and Utah but the Utes held on to get that win. I think the optimism from us Utah fans is that this year we will hold those leads like we did against BYU, Colorado, and Stanford.

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 10:34 p.m.

    @ Apache

    There are going to be growing pains, but they certainly didn't make the move too early. It was time for the move. Plus, the offer was kind of a "now or never" thing.

  • Apache Draper, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 7:48 p.m.

    The Runnin' Redskins jumped into the PAC 10 too early and now they're going to pay the price.

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 6:40 p.m.

    "Bowl Night 2014
    BYU: Miami
    Utah: the couch on the hill"

    Well, we might as well not play the season now....

  • Chamberlain Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 6:23 p.m.

    IrieUte

    Poor timing for Whittingham not have a one-game season versus BYU to salvage an otherwise dismal season, losing, bowl less season.

  • Spokane Ute Spokane, WA
    Aug. 4, 2014 5:05 p.m.

    I think Whittingham needs to get to a bowl; or it's time for Utah to look for a new coach. I realize the schedule is brutal; but I don't think that 6 wins is asking too much.

    @ Redthunder

    Amen Bro...Go Utes!

  • IrieUte west valley, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 5:03 p.m.

    "The utes have handled the Cougars for the past few years but without BYU on the schedule the team really doesn't have anything to get up for."

    Playing 5 top 25 teams, and at least 3 others ranked ahead of BYU, instead of ByU and their cupcake schedule are definitely great reasons to get up for the game. should we count those reasons?

  • Rose Bowl call yet? Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 4:43 p.m.

    81Ute

    Bowl Night 2014
    BYU: Miami
    Utah: the couch on the hill

    Bowl Night 2013
    BYU: San Francisco
    Utah: the couch on the hill

    Bowl Night 2012
    BYU: San Diego
    Utah: the couch on the hill

    Bowl Night: 2011
    BYU: Dallas
    Utah: El Paso

    Wow, how can you argue with that? At least 3 bowl nights spent on the couch by Utah's Seniors.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 4:09 p.m.

    @mormon ute

    What you focused on was only one side of the coin, the one you thought made your point. As I said utah's record last year was a very good representation of what they were, they won some close games and they lost some close games and when you are a 5-7 team that is how it goes. Sure if everything else stays exactly the way it was last year but utah wins their close games that were losses they would have a much better record, but as I said if they lost the close ones they won they'd have a horrific record. That is pretty much the definition of a mediocre team which is what utah has been in the pac12. yes I know that will get you all hot and bothered and you'll make some indignant reply, but utah's record shows the truth of it.

    And no it doesn't have anything to do with BYU, we're discussing utah here.

    I am interested to see if they can do better this year.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 4:04 p.m.

    @uteology

    Their opinion is what is subjective, but I'm not even saying they didn't make some improvement last year. You're truly struggling here. But whether or not they improved while everyone that beat them did not is extremely subjective, and frankly a pipe dream.

    @ekute

    There is no such thing as "more than their fair share", there is no supreme being making a tally and dolling out the number of injuries each team has. BYU had some tough injuries as well last year, so did usc, stanford, oregon, osu, wsu, az, asu, and everyone else utah played.

    There is no guaranty utah won't have twice as many injuries this year as last or they may have very few. There is no allotment for this, it just happens.

  • 81Ute Central, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 3:26 p.m.

    My 2-cents:

    Senior Night 2011
    Utah: Colorado 11/25
    BYU: New Mexico State 11/19

    Senior Night 2012
    Utah: Arizona 11/19
    BYU: Idaho 11/10 (week after Halloween)

    Senior Night 2013
    Utah: Colorado 11/30
    BYU: Idaho State 11/16

    Senior Night 2014
    Utah: Arizona 11/22
    BYU: Savannah State 11/22

    Senior Night 2015
    Utah: Colorado
    BYU: Fresno State 11/21

    Senior Night 2016
    Utah Arizona
    BYU: Utah State 11/28

    Wow, how can you argue with that? At least the next 3 Senior nights are in the latter half of November.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 4, 2014 2:22 p.m.

    itsajelly
    Walla Walla, WA

    Urban, Urban, Wherefore art thou Mr. Meyer?

    -------------

    Ohio State

  • itsajelly Walla Walla, WA
    Aug. 4, 2014 1:30 p.m.

    Urban, Urban, Wherefore art thou Mr. Meyer?

  • Mormon Ute Kaysville, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 1:24 p.m.

    Duckhunter,

    No, I'm not ignoring the close wins. The point was to illustrate that Utah was competitive in the Pac 12 last year. That is why I focused on the conference games the Ute's were competitive in, but lost. In fact, those close conference wins support my point as well. Especially the win over Stanford. Sure, other teams are likely to have improved as well. That doesn't take away from the fact that the Utes already have been competitive. Jim Mora made that very clear during Pac 12 media and specifically mentioned the fact that the Utes stayed in the game even while giving away the ball 6 times. The question that will have to be answered on the field is who made more improvement. We'll find out as the Utes play each of those teams this year and yes, that includes the three close wins.

  • Just the FAX Olympus Cove, Utah
    Aug. 4, 2014 1:18 p.m.

    ekute

    Injuries are part of the game and every team has them.

    BYU lost both of its starting corners before their first game last season, and suffered injuries to numerous other key players throughout the season.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 4, 2014 12:57 p.m.

    @Duckhunter

    Injuries to key players are subjective? Team statistics are subjective? Did you even read the article or are you adding your own opinion without reading it? The author makes valid points about Utah's improvement last year.

  • ekute Layton, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 12:35 p.m.

    Duckhunter,

    The Utes had more than their share of injuries to key players on both sides of the ball last year. That's what I mean by "paid their dues". I'm hoping that the injury scales balance out and leave the team relatively injury free for the entire season. Go Utes!

  • redthunder Ogden, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 12:24 p.m.

    Quit with the gloom and doom. The Utes will be just fine. The team will go 7-5 or 8-4 this year.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 12:21 p.m.

    @uteology

    Yes it is subjective, no one knows and it is all subjective until gamyes are played. Just because some pac12 media guide (uh...how subjective is that thing?) sa's it doesn't make it fact, it is once again their opinion, or in otherwords supposition, subjective.

    That said I think they've probably improved, they have more experience at some key positions and appear to have a bit more depth so my "subjective" opinion is that utah has improved. But that doesn't change anything I said, do you personally know how the other teams have improved or gotten worse?

    As I said they could improve and have the exact same record as last year. It will be up to chris hill to "subjectively" decide if they have improved if the record doesn't improve and then make a decision on whittingham.

    As I've told other utah "fans" on this subject, utah doesn't exist in a vacumm where only they improve or get worse while eveyrone else stays the same. There are other factors to this than whether or not utah has improved, thigs they cannot control.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 4, 2014 11:49 a.m.

    @Duckhunter

    The fact that Utah has improved is not subjective, nor is the fact that PAC-12 has improved over the same period as well.

    Deseret News keeps censoring, so try searching for "The big 2014 Pac-12 guide countdown, from Colorado to Oregon". Have a look at the non-subjective analysis of Utah compared to teams like Colorado:

    "Utah improved rather dramatically on paper in 2013, but close losses and a key injury prevented most people from noticing. Can the Utes take another step forward this fall?... In so many ways, 2013 was a rebirth... the growth of 2013 was obvious on paper, and with a lot returning (including a healthy-for-now Wilson), it's not hard to see Utah taking another solid step forward in 2014."

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 11:42 a.m.

    @ekute

    No one else had injuries last year?

  • ekute Layton, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 11:29 a.m.

    Duckhunter,

    Maybe so. Then factor in that the Utes paid their dues to the injury bug last year and were still close in their losses...tip the scales back towards Utah.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 11:25 a.m.

    @mormon ute

    The point is that everyone else didn't stay the same and only utah improved, if utah even has improved. Of utah's 4 close wins last year they play 2 of them again this year, stanford and colorado. I don't think anyone being honest thinks utah is better than stanford this year and doubt anyone considers that a repeat win. colorado looks to have improved but utah should have a slight edge although colorado gets them at home.

    Of the games utah lost only one of those teams appears to maybe have gotten worse, arizona, and that is even debatable.

    It isn't just a matter of utah changing for the better, an assumption anyway, and everyone else remaining the same. They're all different than last year so you cannot just look at those close losses and assume that utah is going to repeat them even being close let alone actually winning them.

    An objective look at it would give one the same impression shown in the pre season pac12 media poll which is utah once again finishing 5th in their division with a losing record although an outside shot at a better record.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 11:13 a.m.

    @mormon ute

    What you are ignoring are utah's close wins last season. For example usu 30-26, BYU 20-13, stanford 27-21, colorado 24-17. Those 4 games could have gone either way and had they been losses utah would have gone 1-11 last season. You cannot count the close losses without also counting the close wins, I know you want to do that to paint the most positive picture you possibly can but it simply isn't legitimate.

    What that record told us, with several close losses and several close wins, is that utah was pretty much what they were, they basically split the close games so their record was what it should have been.

    A little improvement could result in the exact same record as last year, it might even produce a worse record because you are ignoring the possibility that utah's opponents might have improved as well keeping the distance between themselves and utah the same, or even widening it. Ditto for the teams utah beat, they easily could have closed the gap on utah and a "little improvement" for them might mean they beat utah this time.

  • Snack PAC Olympus Cove, Utah
    Aug. 4, 2014 11:13 a.m.

    Mormon Ute

    "What some of you are not acknowledging is that Utah was competitive in several conference losses last season."

    True, but the same could be said of 14 of the last 17, and 3 of the last 4, BYU-Utah games, yet Utah fans are constantly beating their chests about how "dominating" Utah has been lately.

    It's funny how BYU's close losses to good teams are constantly dismissed by Utah fans (e.g. see BYU's Top 25 losses in 2012).

    A little consistency would lend more credibility to your argument.

  • Mormon Ute Kaysville, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 10:43 a.m.

    What some of you are not acknowledging is that Utah was competitive in several conference losses last season. For example, Oregon State 51-48, 3 points is pretty darn close. UCLA 34-27, lost by one touchdown even with 6 interceptions against the team many have favored to win the Division this season. ASU 20-19, 1 point is close by any measure. So three games that could have gone either way. Had those been wins the Utes would have finished with 8 wins on the season. So Duckhunter says Coach Whitt can save his job by showing some improvement even with a losing record. I say a little improvement will produce a winning record and save Coach Whitt's job.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 10:19 a.m.

    @gdog

    And utah is breaking in their 7th OC in 6 seasons. My point is fresno is not the guaranteed win so many utah "fans" on here are trying to pretend it is. Yes utah is closer to fresno in talent than they are to the top pac12 teams. fresno beating utah this season would be far less a shock than utah beating oregon, usc, ucla, or stanford, in fact fresno beating utah would be no shock at all.

    The narrative from so many utah "fans" these days is that putting pac12 next to utah's name has automatically made them superior to every team not in one of the so called "p5" including the upper non p5 teams. I do not agree with that at all. utah is not superior to those teams in talent and I think some of them are better than utah frankly.

    utah has the advantage in the fresno game of being at home but outside of that I don't think utah is superior to fresno at all.

  • Truth Machine Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 10:13 a.m.

    Uteology

    Closer to home:

    BYU was 2-5(29%) versus P5s in 2013 with a new OC and a new offensive scheme, but is heading into 2014 with a fast improving starter, a much improved offensive line, new, experienced talent, and an offense that has had a year to fine tune.

    Utah was 2-7(22%) versus P5s in 2013 with a new OC and a new offensive scheme, but is heading into 2014 with an injury-prone starter, an untested backup, and another new OC and new offensive scheme, with an even more difficult schedule than last season.

    Even for the king of spin and the ignorer of any fact that doesn't support your current, narrowly focused narrative, trying to compare this Utah team to 2008 is laughable.

  • Who am I sir? Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 10:08 a.m.

    @thebigsomoan

    First, thanks for your comments; however, when you say, " Keep losing and the thrill of playing with the big boys will ultimately ring hollow and mean nothing."

    Many Y fans have said the same. Time will tell. Perhaps the Y and the U are headed in the same direction in this regards only on different paths. If the Y keeps winning against teams like Idaho (twice); New Mexico State (twice); Hawaii (twice); Idaho State (twice); Weber; Middle Tennessee; and Nevada - since declaring "independence" it rings hollow and means nothing.

    I think the first signs of deterioration will be things like promotions (ie. buy a ticket to a home game and get 4 free basketball tickets, 4 hot dogs, and 4 drinks") and aftermarket prices of home games for $5 -$10. I know I had great respect for a cougar season ticket holder for trying to sell this years tickets for "face value". I contrasted that with my son "scalping" tickets for a U game and basically paying for his season tickets! I know as a prudent businessman which "investment" I would recommend.

    Conclusion. At this point I think BYU is ahead of us on the path.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 10:06 a.m.

    @IRS Agent

    "So it's not a matter of whether they win or lose, but a matter of "how" they lose. The fact that they will lose is a given. Is that correct?"

    What I'm saying is that the wins and losses are not the only criteria, nor should they be. Personally I think utah will finish with another losing record but they can show some improvement and still have a losing record. Now that is a subjective analysis that chris hill will have to make, he'll have to decide if they look to have improved enough in comparison to the rest of the conference to justify keeping whittingham for another year despite the losing record but whittingham has some qualities that transcend the win loss record.

    That said if he has a 2 or 3 win season I think he is gone, where he can survive a losing record is if it is a 5 win season with the losses being close and utah being competitive in the games. A 4 win season might not be enough but a 5 win with clear improvement should give him 1 more season IMO.

  • Tajemnica Santa Monica, CA
    Aug. 4, 2014 9:58 a.m.

    @ Who am I sir?

    "Contrast that with BYU. If they were to lose to every team on this years schedule that is either ranked or received votes in the preseason poll and defeat every team on their schedule not ranked or received votes their record would be 11-1."

    Not to say that your idea is totally flawed but its time for you to fact check before you post. BYU would be 8-4. Texas, UCF, Boise St. and Houston have all received preseason votes in the coaches poll.

  • Provo, Ute Fan St. George, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 9:55 a.m.

    As a friend of a BYU player and a season ticket holder at the U I am just excited for football to start and support our local schools. I don't hate BYU and wish them nothing but the best this year and same with USU. Quit hating each other and root for your in state schools. In a few years we will have the privilege to have a lot of big power schools to come in to the 3 stadiums and we will all be able to watch if we choose. I am excited.

  • scenic view Baltimore, MD
    Aug. 4, 2014 9:49 a.m.

    They say that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and over, but expecting different results, yet, the Utes seem to think that they're the only team in the country capable of plugging in a new OC and new offensive scheme every spring, fine tuning it in August, and being ready for prime time in September.

    Add to that a QB competition between an injury-prone starter and a transfer who only completed 4 of 13 passes last season, plus a very difficult schedule, and you have the makings of a team that will be lucky to win 4 games.

    Prediction: If the Utes don't beat Fresno State, Utah's season will be over before the end of the first week in September.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 4, 2014 9:34 a.m.

    BigCougar
    Bountiful, UT

    @former coach
    This team would dominate the MWC,

    --------------------

    Dream on...in recent years the utes have struggled with Utah St and with Boise St both of which are 2 of the better teams in the MWC and this coming season you have another test against the MWC with Fresno St. You might have the edge in this game however because they're having to break in a new QB.

    ------------

    How priceless, the same person telling Utah fans to stop whining goes on to whine about Fresno State breaking in a new QB.

    Newsflash... One of the major reasons Utah has struggled is breaking in a new QB each year due to injuries and the self infected wound of breaking in a new offensive system with a new OC.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 4, 2014 9:29 a.m.

    BigCougar
    Bountiful, UT

    @Uteology
    Like in 2008, pre-Sugar Bowl game when the same fans were screaming the Tide will Roll Utah?

    -------------

    That's ancient history, last decade and irrelevant to today, get with the times. These ain't your Dad's utes anymore.... You can whine all you want about how hard your schedule is (wah wah wah) but this is what YOU signed up for. Quit your whining and start winning some games or be quiet

    ------------------------

    Then that would put 1984 as prehistory.

    You are aware that since leaving the MWC:

    A) BYU is 5-11 (31%) vs P5 teams

    B) Utah is 11-18 (37%) vs P5 teams

    So I would ask you to do the same that you are demanding of others. Thank you.

  • Down under Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 9:18 a.m.

    Anyone feel the angst and nervousness from the u fans? I will give them a little more credit than most and say it will be a 4-8 season at best. Reason? I don't see Wilson making it past the third game without a season ending injury. He simply cannot take a hit like most college QB's. With a weak O line he will not get the protection he needs to hit his receivers. This has been proven before. Their backup qb may be good but without any game reps he will be way over his head.

  • ekute Layton, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 7:53 a.m.

    Long story short, Mr. Rock thinks that if the Utes can avoid a deluge of injuries like they suffered last year, they will go bowling and Kyle's seat will cool down. I'll go with that.

    Now that they're excused from playing us for 2 years, a lot of big talk from the "fans" of the small ball playing team in happy valley. lol.

    Go Utes!

  • scott Alpine, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 5:24 a.m.

    gored

    4-5, 3-6, 2-7, and another losing, bowl less season coming up, but the standard of success on the hill is Utah "owning" BYU, even though U don't even play BYU again until 2016 - classic little brother mentality.

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 3:03 a.m.

    @former coach
    This team would dominate the MWC,

    --------------------

    Dream on...in recent years the utes have struggled with Utah St and with Boise St both of which are 2 of the better teams in the MWC and this coming season you have another test against the MWC with Fresno St. You might have the edge in this game however because they're having to break in a new QB.

    Ute fans do a lot of wishful thinking about last year and all the "coulda woulda shoulda" games but the same reality holds true that with a few lucky bounces taken away and close wins become more close losses Utah could've just as easily been 1-11. Looking at your conference schedule you look a lot closer to 1-11 than you do to being bowl eligible.

    Right now Vegas has the over/under on wins for Utah being 4.5 (hint -- you should definitely take the under).

    (Queue the whiney fans complaining their schedule is too hard, they have too many injuries, wah wah wah)

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 2:48 a.m.

    @Uteology
    Like in 2008, pre-Sugar Bowl game when the same fans were screaming the Tide will Roll Utah?

    -------------

    That's ancient history, last decade and irrelevant to today, get with the times. These ain't your Dad's utes anymore. The big problem is while Utah enjoyed several consecutive of the best recruiting classes they've ever had, they've gone 4-5, then 3-6 and finally last season 2-7 in conference play. This year could very very likely continue that trend and see Utah go 1-8. The only guaranteed win on the schedule is Idaho St.

    You can whine all you want about how hard your schedule is (wah wah wah) but this is what YOU signed up for. Quit your whining and start winning some games or be quiet. Nobody cares that it's too hard and you can't compete in the Pac12. Your SOS the first 2 yrs wasn't that tough, according to Sagarin they were ranked in the 40's and you still lost. BYU's SOS last season was rated 38th by Sagarin and 34th by ESPN and they managed to do well enough to get to a bowl game. Time to put up or...

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 2:38 a.m.

    @Gored
    It's also interesting how much interest Utah articles generate for the BYU fan base. But, nothing changes these stats: 4 in a row, 5 of 6, 9 of 12, and 57-34-4.

    ----------------------

    I'm not sure why you're complaining about BYU fans posting on Ute articles, you are part of the same bunch that are among the first to post on all the BYU articles. Typical ute hypocrisy.

    As for the comment about "nothing" changing those stats, when Utah goes 1-8 in conference play this year Kyle will be gone before the Colorado game (maybe even before teh Arizona game). Kyle has done an outstanding job preparing his team for their annual "Super Bowl" with BYU but puts so much emphasis on this one game that he can't get the team to play all their conference games with the same fire and emotion. The culture of the program is too firmly entrenched anbd he hasn't been able to turn it around (hence his asking for a break in the rivalry).

    A new HC will bring a new focus and Utah will lose the edge vs BYU that Kyle brought to the team.

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 2:15 a.m.

    @Duckhunter
    Slapping a pac12 next to their name doesn't all of a sudden make utah any better than they ever were, in fact fresno is a team I think is on par with utah far more than utah is on par with the oregon, ucla, stanford, and usc's of the world.

    -----------------

    The truth is hard for some to hear. Utah is on a downward trend since 2011 and have gone 4-5, 3-6 and last season 2-7. That in and of itself isn't a guarantee that they'll go 1-8 in conference this year but when you look at the schedule, it's very very possible they will have to work hard just to get to 1-8 in conference play.

    Wash St has turned the corner on Utah and they have a senior QB who beat them last year coming back. Oregon St has an NFL QB, UCLA has an NFL QB, ASU has an NFL QB, Oregon has a potential Heisman winning QB, USC has a QB that will get NFL attention and so does Stanford. Colorado isn't a gimme game because they're at home and are improving under a new HC.

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 2:01 a.m.

    @Who am I sir

    Third option is how we are going to do it - regain the "swagger"! In my opinion this years team is deepper in depth than ever before. With many positions stronger than last year. And last year was ever so close. (I know - woulda, coulda, shouda!)

    -------------

    Ahhhh....that's so sweet. Despite the stark reality of the situation you're trying to be brave. New swagger starts when the new HC takes over and changes the culture of the team into one that cares more about winning Pac12 games than they do beating BYU. It's sad that you can't have them both. Kyle was so good at getting his teams whipped into a frenzy for the BYU game but not for their conference games.

    As for the team being "deeper" this year, I'm pretty sure they have the same number of players this year as they have had in previous years. Nope, same lack of overall Pac12 talent, speed and athleticism. Judging by struggles you've been having in recent years with Utah St and Boise St, it's doubtful you'd even have swagger in the MWC.

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 1:49 a.m.

    @Henry Drummond

    I suspect Utah is going to be better than most people give them credit for. Everyone looks to last year. That was then - this is now. Don't count out the Utes.

    ----------------------

    They'll be the best 2-10 or 3-9 team in America! Go SOS!! Go Pac12!!!

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 1:43 a.m.

    This should've been placed in the Fiction section.

    Michigan in 2008 was the worst Wolverine team in over 100 yrs barely losing in OT to the 2nd best Ute team in over 100 yrs. The situation is quite the opposite now. Michigan isn't great but they're very good and are ranked going into the season. Utah's season starts going downhill in game 3.

    The loss to Michigan starts an 8 game losing streak before the Utes get a break at home with Arizona. The AZ game is no guarantee, just that its a winnable game for Utah because they're at home. Problem is they may be so demoralized after getting crushed by UCLA, ASU, Stanford (revenge will be sweet), Oregon, Oregon St, Wash St, USC etc that they won't have anything left to play for and will just lay down and roll over for the Wildcats.

    The only question mark is which crushing defeat will be the final straw for Kyle? Will it be the crushing loss to Oregon? USC? Will he make it as far as the Stanford game? also, who will be the interim HC? Maybe Chris B knows...

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 1:21 a.m.

    @Max-was-right
    3-8 this year and Whitt is coaching BYU's defense next year.

    -----------------

    Whitt will be coaching somewhere else next season but it won't be as the DC at BYU. Bronco already has Nick Howell as his DC. Maybe Kyle can coach the Inside Linebackers, Paul Tidwell's close to retiring.

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 1:19 a.m.

    Thanks for the bedtime story Dad, that was a great fairy tale about the utes going to a bowl game. Maybe tomorrow night you can tell us the story of Peter Pan and the Pirates.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 4, 2014 12:12 a.m.

    "...without BYU on the schedule the team really doesn't have anything to get up for. In the past the BYU game was one that motivated the team. With it gone the team won't have any motivation."

    ----------

    Aah, the Cougar Nation myth that helps them feel better about themselves after yet ANOTHER loss.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 4, 2014 12:04 a.m.

    @Naval
    How could an 11-3 "Power 5 conference champion" [Stanford] team, that beat 6 ranked opponents, by an average of 11.3 pts/game...

    ...be tabbed as "over-ranked"?

    -------------

    You are aware that your asking the same person that blames the loss to Virgina on rain?

  • Naval Vet Philadelphia, PA
    Aug. 3, 2014 11:00 p.m.

    Balan:

    "Stop with the strength of schedule whining already. I don't hear that excuse coming from any of the other PAC 11.1 schools - none of them!"

    So somebody from South Jordan, UT doesn't hear what other Pac-12 fans have to say?

    No surprise there. It helps that you don't know any other Pac-12 fans too.

  • GoRed WEST VALLEY CITY, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 10:01 p.m.

    Ho hum. Another article by the D News questioning Utah's program, followed by a legion of BYU fans pouncing on Utah's chances. And these same BYU fans conveniently overlook the fact that Utah has one of the hardest schedules in the country, rated by some publications as being the 5th most difficult in the country (Oregon, Stanford, USC, UCLA, Arizona State, Michigan, etc.) while not acknowledging that they have one of the easiest schedules in the country (UNLV, UConn, Virginia, Cal, Savannah State, etc.), rated by some publications as being in the 100's for strength of schedule (129 is the easiest schedule possible). BYU is only interested in playing games for guaranteed wins. If they played Utah's schedule, they would be lucky to go 3-9.

    It's also interesting how much interest Utah articles generate for the BYU fan base. But, nothing changes these stats: 4 in a row, 5 of 6, 9 of 12, and 57-34-4.

    Utah will forever own BYU.

  • scott Alpine, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 9:35 p.m.

    Naval Vet

    It's laughable that you're scolding other bloggers for "making stuff up", and then you cite SOS rankings as if they were something more than a best guess.

    Since 2014 SOS is based on how teams do in the upcoming season, nobody, not even Phil Steele, ESPN, nor anybody else knows exactly what BYU's nor Utah's SOS will be in 2014, so stop pretending that your predictions are any more "fact based" than worf's.

  • TanMan_101 West Jordan, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 8:00 p.m.

    Max was right just predicted 3-8. So his prediction apparently is saying that this season will be so bad, we won't even play our last game.. hmmmm.

    8 wins including a bowl win. I'd bet the farm on it. This team is better than anyone thinks.

  • AZUTE1 Mesa, AZ
    Aug. 3, 2014 7:24 p.m.

    "...without BYU on the schedule the team really doesn't have anything to get up for. In the past the BYU game was one that motivated the team. With it gone the team won't have any motivation."

    Pure nonsense. We don't have to post a W in order to qualify for getting up for any particular game. See Osu, Ucla and Asu as prime examples of it from last year, all of which literally went down to the wire and literally could've gone the other way. Same goes for Arizona, Usc and Wazzu. Heck, we were neck and neck with Oregon in Eugene well into the 3rd quarter before it got away from us. We most definitely got up for each and every game last year and do so every single year for that matter. To proclaim otherwise is nothing more than a coping mechanism byu fans utilize in the face of being so thoroughly and completely dominated by us, annually.

  • Lambo Clearfield, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 7:05 p.m.

    The gap between BYU and Utah is not as big as some ute fans believe it to be. While I admit Utah has had a slight edge lately, the fact that Utah chose to avoid BYU the next two years makes it impossible to say who truly has the edge in 2014 & 2015 which is a shame. Playing each other is the best way to find out. Sad to see how quick the Utes are to abandon the best things about college football: rivalry and long held traditions. But even sadder is to see what has happened to some Utes sense of importance since going to the PAC 12. Some have become the very embodiment of what Utah fought against--teams thinking they are special based primarily on their conference.

    Given that the rivalry game has come down to the wire all but two years since 2005, it is a bit out of touch to claim the game is an "automatic win", or pejoratively use the term "mid major" as the gap between the two teams does not warrant the hyperbolic statements. For throwing tradition out the window, Utah loses to the team they put in BYU's place--football karma...

  • Balan South Jordan, Utah
    Aug. 3, 2014 7:04 p.m.

    Stop with the strength of schedule whining already. I don't hear that excuse coming from any of the other PAC 11.1 schools - none of them!

    You don't want to be the doormat of the PAC11.1, quit.

  • Naval Vet Philadelphia, PA
    Aug. 3, 2014 5:25 p.m.

    worf:

    "Don't spill that rubbish of BYU playing a weak schedule, because it's not true."

    Yes it is. Phil Steele has your SOS in the 70s. ESPN has it in the high 90s. That IS one very weak schedule.

    And speaking of "don't spill that rubbish"....

    ...."Either Central Florida, Houston, Texas, Utah State, or Boise State would win the PAC 12 south division if they were in the conference."

    Rubbish. You made that up. How frantic and emotional of you.

  • AZUTE1 Mesa, AZ
    Aug. 3, 2014 5:06 p.m.

    worf
    Mcallen, TX
    @Who am I sir?,

    "Is it BYU's fault the utes have a tough schedule? No!"

    Sos is relevant in these discussions everytime byu fan points to number of Ws and bowl games. byu's Sos finished 35 spots below ours in '13 and will finish roughly 100 spots below ours in '14, yet byu fans don't care about that when pointing finger, as they lose to virtually every P5 opponent they face [see Uva, The U, Wisc, Nd and Uw] and mount Ws against patsies [see any year in byu history].

    We love the challenge of our schedule and its inherent potential reward. Conversely, byu fans applaud their easier, softer route to bowl-eligibility and its inherent limited potential reward, even though they can never beat the school they routinely point finger at.

    4 straight, 5 of 6, 9 of 12 and the insurmountable overall record, 57-34-4, equates to being unequivocally owned.

  • Tomahawk Red San Francisco, CA
    Aug. 3, 2014 4:07 p.m.

    "This Michigan team, though, will be a problem for Utah. The Wolverines are ranked No. 17 in USA Today’s preseason football poll. -Brad Rock

    I'm sitting here trying to figure out which poll this guy is talking about... and how a sports writer can be so clueless. Notre Dame is #17 in the preseason coaches poll. Michigan is #32 with 53 votes.

    Brad Rock is a professional writer who supposedly knows his beat (sports). Egregious errors such as this should be a monumental embarrassment for someone in the journalism industry -- which lives and dies by credibility.

    Unbelievable.

  • Darth Vader Ogden, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 3:14 p.m.

    @ mark it

    The last time the Utes played Michigan and BYU in the same season, well, they handled both teams. I beleive they beat a TCU, Oregon St. and Alabama club as well but who's checking.

    If they were to play both teams again this season and get a split, I would put my money on a win over BYU. The Utes have a very nice opportunity in front of them with Fresno St. and Michigan this year.

    BYU is no longer in the same conference, and the Utes have 9 P5 games after the so called pre-season. The Utes have nothing to gain from playing BYU and claiming the state championship.

  • Naval Vet Philadelphia, PA
    Aug. 3, 2014 2:54 p.m.

    Marked it Down:

    Fresno St. plays at the same level as our indy-irrelevant, WAC-wannabe little brother. The only real difference is, playing a team in Central California would most likely aid in attracting better recruits and/or establishing a more competitive recruiting pipeline than would be playing a team in Provo. And that therefore makes playing FSU > the Y.

  • Former Coach Payson, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 2:49 p.m.

    @WhyAmIhere,

    Are you serious? I have read on a few different occasions this past week about how Utah get up for BYU and then drops off, or the emotional game for Utah. Not buying it myself. As far as being scared, I don't think you watched the UCLA game, the Stanford game, or any of the Pac 12 games. Utah does not play scared. The emotion and effort is there every bit as much if not more for the conference game as they are for BYU. The bottom line is that the majority of the PAC 12 teams are better than BYU thus they become more difficult to get the win. For any who think Utah is not a better team and program than they were 3 years ago you are wrong. This team would dominate the MWC, if they play a mid major schedule we would be talking about 11-1 or 12-0 seasons. That applies to the last 3 years. Utah has been in that position of busting the P5's control of college football and when give the opportunity decided to join it rather than fight it.

  • Naval Vet Philadelphia, PA
    Aug. 3, 2014 2:31 p.m.

    WhyAmIhere?:

    "And don't tell me they are motivated to play the Oregon's and UCLA's of the PAC12. The reality is that they are scared to death of playing the big boys week after week."

    Don't tell US that we AREN'T! Cougar fans such as yourself have no idea how awesome it is to play more than one or two interesting/challenging games, so they can't tell us how we feel, or what motivates us. WE tell THEM!

    Utah will be playing 5 teams ranked in the preseason: 2 in the Top-10, 2 in the Top-15, and 1 in the Top-20. In addition to that, we'll be facing 4 other teams receiving votes. THAT's an AWESOME schedule, and one that we do in fact look forward to. If we were "scared to death" to face that sort of gauntlet, we never would have left the MWC back in 2010, to join the Pac-12. We would have left them to join the WAC. Like the cougars did.

  • Naval Vet Philadelphia, PA
    Aug. 3, 2014 2:25 p.m.

    WhyAmIhere?:

    "...without BYU on the schedule the team really doesn't have anything to get up for. In the past the BYU game was one that motivated the team. With it gone the team won't have any motivation."

    Let's be absolutely clear here...THAT game is YOUR "Super Bowl". Not ours. That is the game that YOUR team really "gets up for". Not ours. See for yourself:

    "It is huge. This is like the Super Bowl...Coach Mendenhall will have us prepared to play Utah." -- LB Kyle Van Noy

    "In previous years, I think it's been the biggest motivation we've had, playing Utah and trying to beat our in-state rival." -- OL Ryker Mathews

    "We grew up watching the rivalry and that's why a lot of us came to BYU...Honestly, that's lot of the motivation we had...every day we remind ourselves, 'Hey, we've got to beat Utah'." -- DB Drew Reilly

  • Naval Vet Philadelphia, PA
    Aug. 3, 2014 2:18 p.m.

    toosmartforyou:

    Stanford was "over-ranked"? Maybe....IF your point was that Stanford wasn't REALLY the 5th-best team in the country last year, as Stanford was ranked #5 when they lost to Utah.

    BUT...if you're suggesting that Stanford -- who finished the 2013 season ranked #11 -- was overrated, you're gonna need to back that one up. Because the 2013 Stanford team was SOLID. They won the Pac-12 (aka, the 2nd toughest league in the country last year), and beat 6 ranked opponents. SIX! #25 Washington, #21 Arizona St. (twice), #20 Notre Dame, #16 UCLA, and #9 Oregon. And by an average of 11.3 pts/game. How could an 11-3 "Power 5 conference champion" team, that beat 6 ranked opponents, by an average of 11.3 pts/game...

    ...be tabbed as "over-ranked"?

    Without being "frantic and emotional" I mean.

    So please....do tell. Back that up.

  • Naval Vet Philadelphia, PA
    Aug. 3, 2014 2:03 p.m.

    TJ:

    "I don't see the depth being as good as the past two years. I don't even see the level of talent in the last recruiting class being as good as the two before it."

    Last year's recruiting class WAS -- per Utah's traditional standards -- sub-par. However, most teams -- including Utah this year -- don't start all their true freshmen over the more experienced Seniors. Therefore, our poor 2014 class won't really impact us that much until those guys get up to their Junior years -- which would be somewhere around 2016-17. As for THIS year...

    ...most of Utah's impact players would have come from the recruiting classes of 2010 (#32), 2011 (#37), 2012 (#28), and 2013 (#44). And THOSE were some pretty solid/competitive classes.

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Aug. 3, 2014 1:00 p.m.

    @theDailyObserver,

    Either Central Florida, Houston, Texas, Utah State, or Boise State would win the PAC 12 south division if they were in the conference. The utes wouldn't bowl with the BYU schedule either.

    Don't spill that rubbish of BYU playing a weak schedule, because it's not true.

  • Harrison Bergeron Holladay , UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 12:48 p.m.

    I guess playing actual games is just a formality now. Because, everyone has the results of the entire schedule figured out before the first game of the season.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 3, 2014 11:55 a.m.

    @thebigsamoan
    You're in the best situation to prove you [Utah] belong [with 2014 SOS]. Do that and no delusional Cougar fan will ever deny that.

    ------------

    Like in 2008, pre-Sugar Bowl game when the same fans were screaming the Tide will Roll Utah?
    After the game, the same fans are still screaming the Tide weren't motivated?

    The same fans that think the 2009 BYU beat a great Oregon State team that came in motivated even though a few weeks earlier had lost out on the Rose Bowl in their rivalry game.

    Or even on this article take this example:

    @toosmartforyou: "Nothing to sweat. They have two BCS victories and last year they beat over-ranked Stanford. That's all that Dr.Hill requires."

    For these fans #11 Stanford was overrated, yet Texas was such a BIG win for BYU?

    * Texas was ranked AP #15 when they played BYU, dropped 14 spots out the next week, and finished as the 4th best team in the B12, un-ranked at 8-5.

    * Stanford was ranked AP #5 when they played Utah, dropped 7 spots to #13, and finished as PAC-12 champions, lost in the Rose Bowl, at 11-3 AP #11.

  • Marked it Down Park City, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 11:34 a.m.

    TheNun

    Nice try, but your own AD admitted that he dropped BYU from the schedule and added Fresno St because he didn't think the Utes were good enough to play both BYU and Michigan in the same season.

  • Brad E. HERRIMAN, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 11:26 a.m.

    Not scheduling BYU for the automatic yearly win is really going to hurt us Utes this year. Oh well at least we aren't playing in an empty stadium like BYU. Our BYU neighbors were giving away tickets (no takers though), guess a cupcake schedule will do that.

  • SoonerUte Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 11:12 a.m.

    Firing Whittingham means bringing in a new coach, which means a couple of years of learning a new system. I appreciate a school that stands behind its coaches.

    Its too bad coaches have to be fired instead of demoted. I think both Kyle and Bronco would prefer to be defensive coordinators again, and let others do the CEO work of head coaching.

    Interesting that so many Cougar fans hope Whittingham is fired from Utah so that they can get him to come to BYU. I suppose the idea is that one settles to the level of competition where one can do well - like a PAC12 running back moving down to mid-major linebacker.

  • Who am I sir? Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 11:11 a.m.

    How hard is it to defeat a "top 25" ranked team?

    Ask coach Mendenhall. His record is 5 wins and 13 losses (28% winning record).

    With that in mind: If Utah were to lose to every team on this years schedule that is either ranked or received votes in the preseason poll and defeat every team on their schedule not ranked or received votes their record would be 3-9.
    Contrast that with BYU. If they were to lose to every team on this years schedule that is either ranked or received votes in the preseason poll and defeat every team on their schedule not ranked or received votes their record would be 11-1. And it would be their second best winning percentage in history.

    Separate thought: Utah's team will play against 17 players ranked on Phil Steele's preseason All-American teams. 8 of these will play before fans in RES. In addition, Utah fans will see 2 Of Phil Steele's preseason All-Americans every game in punter Tom Hackett and kicker Andy Plillips!

  • Mormon Ute Kaysville, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 10:37 a.m.

    This article started out as kind of a glass half empty and then Rock turned it around to note some positive things although I think he left out several positive things the Utes have going for them. It's funny how the BYU fans are hanging their hats on a bunch of new guys who replaced last year's starters in several key positions, but then they turn around and laugh at the Utes for the same thing. I guess that's just the way it is with you guys. Right Duckhunter?

    I personally believe improvements have been made at several key positions that will help the Utes get over the hump in some of those close games. As Rock pointed out, the Utes weren't that far off last year. Go Utes!

  • wYo8 Rock Springs, WY
    Aug. 3, 2014 9:48 a.m.

    I just want a new phone Mr. Whittingham

  • WhyAmIhere? Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 7:55 a.m.

    The utes have handled the Cougars for the past few years but without BYU on the schedule the team really doesn't have anything to get up for. In the past the BYU game was one that motivated the team. With it gone the team won't have any motivation. And don't tell me they are motivated to play the Oregon's and UCLA's of the PAC12. The reality is that they are scared to death of playing the big boys week after week. I predict a maximum 3 win season this year resulting in the removal of Whit as coach. Then he'll retire and go on an LDS mission.

  • FACTchequer Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 7:54 a.m.

    whoami

    The truth is, just like anything, the newness eventually wears off, even the newness of Utah football being in the PAC 12. It won't take many more losing, bowl less seasons before Utah fans begin deserting their football team, just like they did their basketball team.

    Any Utah fan who witnessed the vast sea of empty red chairs in the Huntsman Center during recent years knows exactly what I mean.

  • Who am I sir? Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 7:35 a.m.

    @Irrelevant

    "2011 was so long ago."

    Yet, 1984 was like yesterday?

  • TheNun Granstville, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 7:10 a.m.

    @ fashion police

    I knew not scheduling byu would come back to haunt the Utes. Replacing that automatic win, with a loss at Michigan, will hurt at the end.

  • toosmartforyou Farmington, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 6:59 a.m.

    Nothing to sweat. They have two BCS victories and last year they beat over-ranked Stanford. That's all that Dr.Hill requires. Good thing for Whittingham, because that's all he's going to produce yet again.

    Why is a bowl so darn important anyway, when you're in a Power 5 conference? After all, somebody needs to be in last place and 11th place in the PAC 12....it just as well be Utah as WSU or Arizona.

  • Cali blue Coalinga, CA
    Aug. 3, 2014 6:30 a.m.

    So is "Who am I sir?" Saying they are losers?

  • thebigsamoan Richmond, VA
    Aug. 3, 2014 6:04 a.m.

    @Who am I sir?
    Cottonwood Heights, UT

    "In truth, Utah fans are ecstatic about the tough schedule...Someday I hope you will experience the thrill of playing a schedule including teams like Oregon, Stanford, USC, UCLA, Arizona State, Oregon State (all listed in the pre-season top 25 list), Arizona, Washington State, Colorado, Michigan, Fresno State, and, yes, Idaho State..."

    I bleed Cougar blue but I also root hard for the Utes and Aggies to do well when they don't play BYU. We're proud you're ecstatic about your strength of schedule. Honestly, I'd love to see us play that same schedule too but you know it's not possible due to our situation, not because we're afraid or can't compete with those schools. You're in the best situation to prove you belong. Do that and no delusional Cougar fan will ever deny that. Keep losing and the thrill of playing with the big boys will ultimately ring hollow and mean nothing.

    Go Cougars! And good luck to Utes and Aggies too!

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 3, 2014 1:39 a.m.

    @Duckhunter
    Highland, UT

    @drute

    So give us the names and dates of all the other articles the Dnews has published about the demise of whittingham and utah? I read just about every day and I don't remember very many of them, if any at all.

    -----------

    You spend more time on Utah articles, with multiple user names, than you do on BYU articles yet you can't recall the articles below.

    NOTE: Deseret News had to officially apologize for article #5.

    1. Brad Rock: Whittingham should get one more year (Tuesday, Nov. 26 2013)

    2. Brad Rock: Another down year would put Kyle Whittingham near the flame (8/25/2013)

    3. Utah football: Ute coach Kyle Whittingham, AD Chris Hill on the same page

    4. Brad Rock: Whittingham will rise or fall with his friends

    5. Commentary: To save job, Utes coach Whittingham should bench quarterback Travis Wilson (Nov. 15 2013)

    No need to thank me. Making you from LOL is thank you enough.

    KW will get one more year, unless we only win 2 or 3 games.

  • Naval Vet Philadelphia, PA
    Aug. 3, 2014 1:28 a.m.

    "This Michigan team, though, will be a problem for Utah. The Wolverines are ranked No. 17 in USA Today’s preseason football poll." -- Brad Rock

    Not in THIS year's preseason Coaches poll. This year's preseason #17 is Notre Dame. And the only poll where I saw Michigan ranked was in the FPI poll, but that poll placed the Wolverines at #18, and was released as far back as last May. In this year's Coaches poll Michigan is receiving votes, and sandwiched between TCU and Iowa.

    For what it's worth though, I do think they'll be a tough team to beat.

    Go Utes!

  • eagle Provo, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 12:23 a.m.

    I see 4-8 best case, probably 3-9. And I would say 2-10 isn't that big of a stretch...

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Aug. 3, 2014 12:11 a.m.

    @Who am I sir?,

    Is it BYU's fault the utes have a tough schedule? No!

  • TJ Eagle Mountain, UT
    Aug. 3, 2014 12:02 a.m.

    I don't see the infusion of talent. I don't see the depth being as good as the past two years. I don't even see the level of talent in the last recruiting class being as good as the two before it. The Utes are approaching the "losing mentality" shown by Colorado, Cal and Washington State. It has taken several of the other teams in the pac many years to fight their way out of that mentality (some are still mired in it)and they have mostly had better recruiting classes than Utah. I think you have to face the facts. Utah will be very fortunate to ever be a top 1/2 pac team. Even Urban Meyer himself would not have won 10 games in 2004 playing a schedule close to the difficulty of this years. The utes have good mid-major talent in a P5 conference. 04 and 08 were great years with average to weak schedules, but it is unlikely that the utes will have another one like them while in the pac, no matter who the coach is.

  • BYUJDMBA San Diego, CA
    Aug. 2, 2014 11:49 p.m.

    It'll be great to welcome back Whit to his original home at BYU as our defensive coordinator next year to free up Bronco to work on the offense.

  • Rose Bowl call yet? Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 2, 2014 11:08 p.m.

    I suspect if fans really expected Utah to be much better, the Utes wouldn't have had to spend so much time making up whiny excuses about how difficult Utah's schedule is going to be.

  • gdog3finally West Jordan, Utah
    Aug. 2, 2014 10:49 p.m.

    If Gionni Paul and Jacoby Hale recover healthwise then that would be a huge boost to the defense. Utah's offense will be better this year. I think Michigan is overrated and a possible win for Utah would be sweet. That game is in Ann Arbor though. But with the schedule during the first month being lighter, Utah could gain some confidence and momentum. The swag factor is huge. I look for Utah to get that back this year. The chemistry is good and the depth is better. Whitt can coach but he has his flaws like Bronco (choosing the right QB has been a problem for both). If Wilson can stay healthy (I fear he won't ala the repeated Wynn failure experiment), then Utah could start to roll with Christensen.

  • gdog3finally West Jordan, Utah
    Aug. 2, 2014 10:42 p.m.

    To go bowling, Utah needs to beat Idaho State, Fresno State, Washington State, Oregon State, and Colorado. That is 5 wins (Oregon State on the road is the biggest iffy game with Sean Mannion). I think Utah gets these 5 games though. From there Utah will need to win one more game unless they lose to Oregon State. I like the opportunity to beat Arizona and USC at home. Winning both of those is reaching somewhat. But I do see Utah getting 6 wins and I wouldn't be shocked if they win 7 games (surprising someone along the way).

  • gdog3finally West Jordan, Utah
    Aug. 2, 2014 10:36 p.m.

    Fair enough Duckhunter. I don't think Fresno is a cake walk either. Aren't they breaking in a new QB though. And the game is at RES. If Fresno is projected to win their conference, then what does that say about Boise State? They have kept a smoke screen record recently with their own bad schedule. Houston was a barn burner last year but BYU still looked superior to them to me. The game is in Provo this year. Now that QB could get hot. And BYU has traditionally struggled with QBs that can stretch the field. That said, I think BYU has a really good secondary for a change. Injuries were costly at that position last year. To me the only challenging games on BYU's schedule the whole year are Texas and USU. BYU has USU's number and Texas is in rebuild mode. They are the one team that is physically superior to BYU on their schedule but BYU will be fresh for them. Now if BYU played P5 teams week in and week out then BYU would find out what TCU and Utah are experiencing right now. And that is having a losing record.

  • Ernest T. Bass Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 2, 2014 10:14 p.m.

    We would be 10 wins on Utah's schedule. Easily.

  • PAC man Anaheim, CA
    Aug. 2, 2014 10:14 p.m.

    spokaloo

    "I think the break in not playing each other will be good for both utah and BYU."

    You're half right. It'll be good for Utah because the Utes will at least have a fighting chance versus Fresno State; Taysom Hill and company would have mopped RES field with the Utes this season.

  • Who am I sir? Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 2, 2014 8:56 p.m.

    @Duckhunter

    "..the (Utah) schedule is tough, just as utah "fans" are constantly whining about..."

    In truth, Utah fans are ecstatic about the tough schedule. That is why for every season of PAC-12 membership RES is sold out. (98+% renewal rate!) Someday I hope you will experience the thrill of playing a schedule including teams like Oregon, Stanford, USC, UCLA, Arizona State, Oregon State (all listed in the pre-season top 25 list), Arizona, Washington State, Colorado, Michigan, Fresno State, and, yes, Idaho State. (three of the latter were in the receiving votes for the top 25 also.) And then to do this year after year. Look ahead at how excited Y fans are that in the next 5 or so years you will have Arizona, USC, and Stanford come to Provo. Well, it will never get old for this Utah fan to have all the PAC-12 teams come to RES at least once every two years!
    When Utah fans (in general) talk about the difficulty of their schedule it is with pride and to provide some background as to why we went from two undefeated seasons this past 10 years to losing seasons, so far, in the PAC-12.
    2014 - what a year for football!

  • theDailyObserver Salt Lake City, Utah
    Aug. 2, 2014 8:42 p.m.

    I really can't wait for the season to start. At the very least, fans of the 3 big teams in Utah will have something else to speculate on. byu will have a good season because they are a weak team playing against even weaker competition. Utah State will likely have a good season in their relatively new conference. If Utah has a good season, it will be because they triumphed when the team's soul was tested week in and week out. Character in the face of a true and consistent challenge is more intriguing to me, which makes only one of the teams in Utah truly worth watching.

  • Irrelevant Provo, UT
    Aug. 2, 2014 7:52 p.m.

    @ drute

    While I didn't really understand the context of your comment about STG, maybe I could help clarify the meaning behind this article. CFB has a "what have you done for me lately" mentality. BYU and now USU have created a brand of winning on the national stage as well as participating in bowl games around the country (USU will be going for their 4th consecutive bowl appearance while BYU is shooting for their 10th). One has to think that if the head coach wasn't getting it "done" and posting enough wins (6) in order to participate in a postseason bowl then they would for surely be canned (ask Crowton).

    I guess what the author is implying is that if the U is a step above all other programs in the state, why have they retained their head coach who hasn't been to a bowl game since 2011?

    Now I know what you're thinking, "well he had to handle the transition of entering the Pac10" that's great and all but why not let him step down, and bring in a coach who can win on the big stage regularly.

    2011 was so long ago.

    Go BYU

  • IRS Agent PROVO, UT
    Aug. 2, 2014 7:24 p.m.

    @DuckHunter

    So it's not a matter of whether they win or lose, but a matter of "how" they lose. The fact that they will lose is a given. Is that correct?

  • Henry Drummond San Jose, CA
    Aug. 2, 2014 6:41 p.m.

    I suspect Utah is going to be better than most people give them credit for. Everyone looks to last year. That was then - this is now. Don't count out the Utes.

  • spokaloo White Salmon, WA
    Aug. 2, 2014 6:11 p.m.

    I think the break in not playing each other will be good for both utah and byu. Byu can take a break from the pressure of not living up to expectations when playing utah (lost 9 of 12, favored in 10 of the games). Utah cannot put their eggs in one basket and focus on playing well in a game other than Byu (with few exceptions).

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Aug. 2, 2014 6:06 p.m.

    @drute

    So give us the names and dates of all the other articles the Dnews has published about the demise of whittingham and utah? I read just about every day and I don't remember very many of them, if any at all.

    I'd also like to know why you think some motley assortment of walkons and late signees no one else seemed to want is some huge "infusion of new talent"? If they were all that great wouldn't they have already been signed by someone? For that matter why didn't utah sign them in the first place back on signing day? You have easily established yourself as one of the more delusional utah "fans" that posts on these boards.

  • Fashion Police Olympus Cove, Utah
    Aug. 2, 2014 5:44 p.m.

    Idaho State = win
    Fresno State = tossup
    at Michigan = LOSS
    Washington State = tossup
    at UCLA = LOSS
    at Oregon State = LOSS
    Southern Cal = LOSS
    at Arizona State = LOSS
    Oregon = LOSS
    at Stanford = LOSS
    Arizona = tossup
    at Colorado = tossup

    With 7 built in losses and 4 tossups, the Utes will have to sweep their tossups, and pull off an upset to be bowl eligible.

    Possible, but not likely.

  • Max-was-right springville, UT
    Aug. 2, 2014 4:26 p.m.

    3-8 this year and Whitt is coaching BYU's defense next year.

    mark it down

  • DrUte Woods Cross, UT
    Aug. 2, 2014 3:58 p.m.

    (Yawn) Another DN article projecting the demise of the U and Coach Whitt.....

    Could just as easily say this particular author could be retired in St George before Coach Whitt gets there, & who's to say that would not be the case? Haven't played a down yet, haven't had a second tick off the clock, but the Utes are somehow already at 4th and 20 and its time to "save Whittingham".

    Au contraire, the U (and Coach Whitt) are just fine, just had a nice infusion of new talent for this season, now looking forward to kicking things off with an improved roster, new coaching in several key areas, and the best brain trust in the state --- Whitt, Sitake, Erickson, and Christensen.

    Bottom Line: It's sooooo great to be a Ute!!! :)

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Aug. 2, 2014 3:52 p.m.

    A losing record should not be the only determining factor in firing, or retaining, whittingham in my opinion. If it is another 5-7 year for instance, but the losses are mostly close could have gone either way types, and the team itself was very competitive I think he will, and should, be retained.

    If it is 4 wins or less it will be pretty hard to justify keeping him on, especially if they are blown out in more than a couple of games, and those blowout losses need to be to oregon, stanford, usc, or ucla, no one else.

    But he should be worried, the schedule is tough, just as utah "fans" are constantly whining about, and he must beat fresno which in my opinion is not the cake walk utah "fans" seem to think it is. Slapping a pac12 next to their name doesn't all of a sudden make utah any better than they ever were, in fact fresno is a team I think is on par with utah far more than utah is on par with the oregon, ucla, stanford, and usc's of the world.

  • FatMan86 West Jordan, UT
    Aug. 2, 2014 3:51 p.m.

    Here is how you do it: start caring about getting PAC 12 wins, a lot of them. Stop caring about one upping BYU who is officially irrelevant and not on your schedule.

  • Who am I sir? Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 2, 2014 3:35 p.m.

    First option is impossible - Utah can't schedule 6 games with BYU in a season.

    Second option is impossible - Schedule as difficult season as BYU does. (As a member of the second rated conference in the country we must play 9 games and with 6 teams ranked in the top 25 preseason poll we must play multiple games against top 25 teams.)

    Third option is how we are going to do it - regain the "swagger"! In my opinion this years team is deepper in depth than ever before. With many positions stronger than last year. And last year was ever so close. (I know - woulda, coulda, shouda!)

    Regardless of whether you are a believer or doubter my advice to you is bet on Utah to cover the spread!

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Aug. 2, 2014 3:10 p.m.

    Idaho State will be a challenge.

  • Uncle Rico Sandy, UT
    Aug. 2, 2014 3:08 p.m.

    Wait a minute...

    Chris B has said over and over that Whit is NOT on the hot seat! Can he be wrong? He's usually right about everything.
    According to this article Whit is up against the wall, but I thought Utah was NOT the doormat of the PAC 10?