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Tom Smart, Deseret News
Utah Utes running back John White IV (15) celebrates after a touchdown as the University of Utah defeats UCLA 31-6 in PAC 12 football Saturday, Nov. 12, 2011 in Salt Lake City, Utah.

TODAY, 1:30 p.m.

Rice-Eccles Stadium (45,017)

FieldTurf, Salt Lake City


Radio: 700AM

The stakes

For Colorado ... a last chance for the Buffaloes to end a 23-game road losing streak. This season's additions, under first-year head coach Jon Embree, include setbacks at Hawaii, Ohio State, Stanford, Washington, Arizona State and UCLA.

For Utah ... the Utes need three things to happen in order to reach the inaugural Pac-12 championship game. The first is to defeat Colorado. Then they'll need a little help from California (against Arizona State) and USC (against UCLA) to do it.

The trends

For Colorado ... a week after knocking off Arizona (48-29) to end a seven-game skid, the Buffaloes slid back to their losing ways with a 45-6 loss to UCLA last Saturday at the Rose Bowl. Colorado hasn't defeated Utah since a 7-0 decision in 1958.

For Utah ... The Utes have won four straight games to climb back into contention for the right to represent the South Division in the Pac-12 title game. The streak includes victories at Rice-Eccles Stadium against Oregon State and UCLA.

Player to watch

John White IV, Utah running back: The junior is just 131 yards away from breaking Utah's single-season rushing record, which was set in 1982 by Carl Monroe (1,507 yards). White enters the game averaging more than 125 yards per contest.

Key matchup

COLORADO'S RODNEY STEWART vs. UTAH: The senior tailback averages 164.1 all-purpose yards per game, ranking him second in the Pac-12 and ninth in the nation. Utah's defense also ranks among the best in the country.

Injury report

Colorado: CB Parker Orms (hamstring) is day-to-day. SS Anthony Perkins (ankle) is questionable.

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Utah: LB Jacoby Hale (concussion) is doubtful.

Next up

Colorado won't return to action again until next season. Utah is assured of a ninth consecutive bowl appearance.

Utah schedule

Date Opponent Time (TV)/result

Sept. 1 vs. Montana St. W, 27-10

Sept. 10 at USC L, 23-14

Sept. 17 at BYU W, 54-10

Oct. 1 vs. Washington L, 31-14

Oct. 8 vs. Arizona St. L, 35-14

Oct. 15 at Pittsburgh W, 26-14

Oct. 22 at California L, 34-10

Oct. 29 vs. Oregon St. W, 27-8

Nov. 5 at Arizona W, 34-21

Nov. 12 vs. UCLA W, 31-6

Nov. 19at Washington St.W, 30-27 (OT)

Nov. 25 vs. Colorado 1:30 p.m. (ROOT)