Utah Utes football: Utes hold off on installing wrinkles in new offense

Return To Article
Add a comment
  • Al Bundy murray, ut
    March 18, 2011 2:56 p.m.


    Well said! I can't wait til August! GO UTES!

  • jefferysl Huntsville, Alabama
    March 18, 2011 1:23 p.m.

    I'm sticking with 7-5. A rusty QB coming off an injury with two brand new RBs and two new interior linemen (and their even greener backups)all learning a new offense and playing in a new conference. Hmmmm, sounds like a lot of unknowns. In the business world it's called "risk" and it all adds up. Now, could the Utes put it all together and win the PAC-12 South? Sure they could. But you folks who are used to 10 win seasons and think it will continue in the PAC will have your expectations rudely adjusted. Arizona has been in the PAC-10 since 1978 and they still haven't been to a Rose Bowl (and they're a good team too). Are the Utes a good program? You bet. They wouldn't have been invited to the PAC-12 otherwise. I'll be rooting for them (except against Washington).

  • davidutefan Evanston, WY
    March 18, 2011 9:37 a.m.

    I'm wondering what universe all these trolls are in. Wynn is returning at QB in a system that better suits him. Utah has possibly the best incoming RBs that they've ever seen and new offensive linemen big enough knock guys on their cans so the backs can run. Utah's behind where they want to be because the backup QBs haven't caught to the changes yet. It's March 18th not August. I don't think the Utes will go unbeaten but, they're surely good enough to do better than 17-16. Even in Provo.

  • cougar76 Provo, UT
    March 18, 2011 9:00 a.m.

    First off, I admit to being a diehard Cougar fan. But, I am at a loss to understand the excitement over Norm Chow. If he is such a great offensive mind, why isn't he still at SC, in the pros with the Titans, at UCLA or working as a head coach somewhere? Second, SC and UCLA know his offensive scheme at least as well as he does and how many times have the rest of the PACK seen it? It hasn't proven to be something they need to fear so far. So, starting over with the newts' "young quarterbacks" doesn't sound like the makings for a very promising year. By the time conference games start, the rest of the PACK will know they don't have to prepare for anything new.

  • pocyUte Pocatello, ID
    March 18, 2011 7:35 a.m.

    people who continue to say that Utah doesn't have any money are not apprised of the facts.

    Utah gets about 1.2 million this year from the Pac-12 because of the renegotiated deal that the Pac-12 pulled off for the championship game and the increased games for next year with the addition of Colorado and Utah.

    This money, by itself is more than Utah would have gotten from the MWC had they stayed.

    I think Utah also has the ability to negotiate for their own individual games, but, I don't know that for sure in light of the expanded coverage deal.

    2012-2013: Utah will make 50% of the Pac-12 distribution. Utah's portion is estimated to be 8-10 mill
    2013-2014: Utah makes 75%
    2014-2015: Utah gets full share.

    Obviously Utah is behind other Pac-12 schools from a distribution standpoint, but, I somehow don't think football is going to be the step child of funding, and it ramps up quickly.

  • flintrock Rigby, Id
    March 18, 2011 5:22 a.m.

    Question? Who is tougher USC or Boise State? Who is tougher Oregon or TCU. I think the big difference between MWC and Pac 10 is how good are the lower tier teams. The upper tier Pac 12 is about the same as MWC. The lower teams in the MWC are really really bad. In the Pac 12 there are really no easy games.
    Utah's weakness is the control room. The QB, we are in real trouble if Wynn
    cannot step up to the plate and man up.

  • hedgelog Idaho Falls, ID
    March 17, 2011 9:48 p.m.

    The [perfect storm: a new offensive coordinator,no qb experience, no running back experience and you're moving to the pac, withoout any money! Good luck!

  • pocyUte Pocatello, ID
    March 17, 2011 4:02 p.m.


    I respectfully disagree about the defense not being as good as last year. Here is my thinking. The D-line loses Sealver Saliga, but only him, while everyone else gains a year of experience including Reilly as a pass rusher and Shelby more fully recovered from his ACL.

    LBs will be much deeper and athletic with Blechen moved to LB, and Hale and Fehoko coming off redshirts. If JJ Williams can play that will be a huge bonus.

    Replacing the DBs will be a challenge. The key will be Keith McGill. He will be a true free safety, which the Utes didn't have last year. Last year showed how much the defense missed a guy like Robert Johnson, and from all accounts McGill and incoming freshman Eric Rowe have the ability to cover for mistakes at corner. Time will tell.

  • Jeff ls Farr West, 84404
    March 17, 2011 12:25 p.m.

    As a BYU fan I believe KW is a great coach. If he wants to wait to install certain wrinkles that is a wise decision. I don't look through colored glasses. I am very realistic in what I say. Wynn can't even throw until June. New QB's need understanding of how to even play at this level. Very few can even dream of playing as a freshman. As for the defense, it should be pretty good, but not quite as good as last year. You lost a lot of key players on offense. Receivers, RB's, That shoulder will take time even when it is healthy. The continuity for offensive flow has to be a serious concern. I think 7 and 5 is very realistic. 8 is a plus. Except for one game I hope you have a good year. I worry about injuries for you. Oregon and USC are cheap shot teams. The wrong injuries could kill your whole year. The PAC is going to try to "put you in your place". You don't bring a large stadium for revenue purposes. There are finance issues.

  • Al Bundy murray, ut
    March 17, 2011 12:11 p.m.


    Your from Sacramento? And you blast our community?

  • jefferysl Huntsville, Alabama
    March 17, 2011 11:38 a.m.

    Good information here...as someone said earlier, sometimes the term "rebuilding" can be overdone. In the case of an entire secondary being new, it can also be a case of how well they play together (we don't know yet). The play of the front seven also feeds into the equation. If you get good pressure on the QB, you don't have to be as airtight in the secondary. Also, what about the backups for rotation or additional guy for nickel situations? All in all, Utah should be pretty salty on defense...but we'll see. They WILL be tested.

  • flintrock Rigby, Id
    March 17, 2011 10:38 a.m.

    Utah will have plenty of experience at Safety. Both projected starters are not participating in Spring Ball. Keith McGill is a Junior College transfer and was all everything with 7 interceptions last year. He's 6'4" and 210 with great speed He will probably play free safety and take Tap Tap's place. The other safety should be Greg Bird. He's the one who broke Shakey for his touchdown against UNLV. Caused a fumble and recovered a fumble at AF. Blocked the punt on the 3 yard line against SDSU to help us take the lead and recovered the shanked punt against BYU to help Utah win that game. I think we'll be just fine this year. Bird might be back for some of spring ball since he had shoulder surgery in Jan. Ask who is the hardest hitter on the team and Bird and Blechen's name are both mentioned. If you want to see some hard hits from last year, Google Greg Bird hits on youtube and enjoy some monster whoppings.

  • Ibleedcrimson Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 17, 2011 9:54 a.m.


    I agree but the mods choose to turn a blind eye to their own rules. Every SammyG, Duckhunter, ChrisB or Hedgehog post is for the most part a taunt and a bait. But heaven forbid you use a couple asteriks in your post.

  • sammyg Springville, UT
    March 16, 2011 5:24 p.m.

    "I expect Shreve to be put in a position to challenge Wynn this fall."

    So you're admitting that Wynn is not the shoo-in QB for the season and his position is up for grabs. Well that's progress wedgie, you're finally beginning to see how things are at the hill and how vulnerable the Utes are.

    Without a driver this so called Fararri of a football team everyone has said will do so good in the PAC-10.2 appears to already be spinning out in the first turn.

    Nothing to pump the fans about in the spring = problems. Welcome to a rebuilding season!

    And we all know how Wynn performed against the teams that he lost to and we're to believe the PAC-10.2 is a stronger conference with better teams and the Utes will just march triumphantly to the Rose Bowl. That's a laugh!

  • CaptainCougar Sandy, Utah
    March 16, 2011 4:20 p.m.

    Wish there was less BYU/Utah mud slinging and more conversation on this site... That being said:

    I'm excited to see how the Utes do this year in the Pac 10. If they can shore up the secondary, they have a nasty d line and could be pretty good. My guess is that they come in forth in the Pac 12 south.. After 1. ASU 2. USC 3. Arizona... Its definitely a rebuilding year. Keep your fingers crossed for the Vegas bowl.

    On a positive note, I bet Shreve beats out Wynn and has a solid year at QB. That kid is going to be pretty good.

  • AltaHawkFan Sandy, UT
    March 16, 2011 2:54 p.m.

    Re: Stuck in the 80's

    You retyped a quote from my post and misspelled a word ? Has no one ever taught you how to cut and paste ?

    Search for Dirk Facer's article on the Utes in the Deseret News on July 27, 2010. Both quotes are from that article.

  • nunya sacramento, ca
    March 16, 2011 2:40 p.m.

    funny how the *SameLosingCommunity* team and fans don't see how they're starting to make excuses already as to why they aren't going to be very good this year...hahahaha, you won't hear that from BYU. wittenham & chao are clueless to say the least. Good luck with that team from SLCommunity.

  • 1984 for life Salt Lake City, UT
    March 16, 2011 2:26 p.m.

    Re: AltaHawkFan:

    "The quotes came from the local papers here in SLC...sorri not sure which." OUCH. Dog must have also eaten your homework.

  • jefferysl Huntsville, Alabama
    March 16, 2011 2:16 p.m.

    There could be a whole bunch of holes in my logic. CAL can really play bad, Washington can get hot, USC could fall apart, Arizona has to replace both offensive and defensive lines, and you can never count out a Mike Riley coached Oregon State team. The other thing to remember is that these are all kids that are playing (big, fast ones maybe...) so no telling what happens. Welcome to the PAC-12 where one week the team is the toast of the town and the next everyone is down in the dumps and mad at the coach or referees. It's gonna be a great year!

  • AltaHawkFan Sandy, UT
    March 16, 2011 1:34 p.m.

    Re: Devilishute

    The quotes came from one of the local papers here in SLC ... sorry not sure which. I believe they were both quoted at the media days prior to the season.

    Btw ... the ute defense did not 'get it done', and he should have been worried about a drop off. Their defense did not play as well as the previous season which is what Burton was saying they would do. The ute defense was worse in Total Defense and much, much worse in Passing Defense (slipping from #16 nationally in 2009 to #73 in 2010). Replacing your entire defensive backfield does not suggest that it will improve this coming year either.

  • ImaCaMan Redlands, CA
    March 16, 2011 1:23 p.m.


    While they may be "criminals", and Utah falls into this group too, there will nothing dysfunctional about Pitt under coach Graham this year. Though he's never been much of a head coach, Wannstadt has always been one heck of a recruiter. They have the talent, a number of good QB's and will come out running on all cylinders with his "high-octane" offense. It's going to be a tough game for the Utes.

  • DevilishUte Tempe, AZ
    March 16, 2011 12:56 p.m.


    It would be nice to know where these quotes are coming from (what's the source document)? And for the record, Brandon Burton did "get it done," to use Burton's words, against the kewgs last year.....

    Now to my comment -

    My primary allegiance is to Utah as I was raised cheering for them. However, I went to grad school at ASU and I have had season tickets there for the last four years. Despite wanting Utah to win the South Division, I think it is more likely that ASU will win the division.

    jeffersyl is not that far off in his predictions for how the season will go for Utah, in my opinion. I think 7-5 will meet my expectations and anything beyond that will exceed them.

  • AltaHawkFan Sandy, UT
    March 16, 2011 12:18 p.m.

    Re: Hedgepig

    'Unlike broco and the tds, the Utes don't over sell themselves just to appease the delusional.'

    Sorry to rock your rose-colored world but just a reminder from last year ...

    "Oh my gosh. This spring ball was the best that I've ever seen our offense, ever. We are completely loaded at every position. If you ask me to tell you our biggest weakness, I couldn't tell you what it is because I don't know what it is," said senior center Zane Taylor, one of four Utes named to the MWC's all-preseason team. "Offensively, I'm just totally excited to be a part of it this season because it's going to be unlike any offense we've seen in the last few years."

    "I feel real confident. The guys that we have coming in are just as talented, if not more talented, than the guys that left," said junior Brandon Burton, Utah's lone defender on the MWC all-preseason team. "So I'm not worried about any drop-off really. I just know we'll get it done. We've always got it done."

  • pocyUte Pocatello, ID
    March 16, 2011 12:08 p.m.

    I think people overestimate the "rebuilding" process. There is always turnover in college football. BSU and TCU last year were serious exceptions to the rule.

    All teams have question marks going into the season. Utah's big ones are secondary, RB, and QB. of the 3, QB is definitely the biggest. I think the defense will be the best we've seen since the Sugar Bowl and will cover for the offense while it gets going.

    Jefferysl, I think you're pretty close on your projections, but, I'm not sure ASU will be that good. I also think Utah will beat BYU. I think 8-4 or 9-3.

  • Thriller Saint George, UT
    March 16, 2011 11:56 a.m.


    I like your assessment and I agree with most of your picks but I see the magic number being 8. If we get 8 wins, I'd call it a successful season that went according to plan. Any less than 8 would be considered a disappointment, obviously the 7 wins that you predict wouldn't be a huge letdown but I still say it would be a bit below expectations. Any wins above 8 are going to be icing on the cake and would be a result of the team exceeding expectations.

  • jefferysl Huntsville, Alabama
    March 16, 2011 11:24 a.m.

    Prognostication post part 2
    7. at CAL. loss. (Tedfords a good coach, the Bears have talent, they need a quarterback. At CAL so...)
    8. OSU. win (Beav's are tough, but they're rebuilding. Game's at RES)
    9. at Arizona. Loss. (Go either way. Foles is an outstanding QB with great receivers and your secondary is green. It's at their house.)
    10. UCLA. win. (Slick Rick New-Weasel and his circus meet disaster at RES)
    11. at WSU. win. (Dont underestimate these guys. Tuel is a good QB with good receivers vs Utahs new secondary. They also have no defense.)
    12. Colorado. win (I don't know enough about these guys. Theyve a new coach. Looked awful at CAL but beat Georgia last year. At RES and you're playing for a bowl).
    The Utes are helped by avoiding Oregon and Stanford, They go 7-5 and bowling during a rebuilding year. Not bad!

  • jefferysl Huntsville, Alabama
    March 16, 2011 11:22 a.m.

    Checked Utahs schedule and who they have coming back. It's not too early to think about 2011 prognostications. Here we go:
    1. Montana St. win
    2. at USC. Loss (superior coaching can't beat SC's talent at home).
    3. at BYU. Loss. (sorry, you're rebuilding, BYU isnt, it's at Provo, and theyve a massive chip on their shoulder)
    4. Washington. win (it'll be at RES for your home PAC-12 opener, a bye week to prepare, and you'll take your frustrations out on my Dawgs)
    5. ASU. loss. (ASU is loaded , they win the PAC-12 South).
    6. at Pitt. win. (Pitt has a new coach. Theyre a dysfunctional team of criminals)
    Continued in next post:

  • TJ Eagle Mountain, UT
    March 16, 2011 11:17 a.m.

    Sounds like the U is going to be facing many of the challenges the Y did last year. New QB's, many new and inexperienced starters and a relatively difficult schedule to start the year. Not as difficult as BYU's was last year but enough for them to start the season 1-4. The only good thing about that would be to build charactar in the team and players...and the sound of a Yning hedgehogs tears all the way from Michigan.

  • hymn to the silent Holladay, UT
    March 16, 2011 8:57 a.m.

    No hype. Just hard work. If you really understand the game you understand how difficult it is to adjust, improve, adapt. That's what makes winning so great...it's just so hard to do.

  • Big_Ben SLC, UT
    March 16, 2011 8:52 a.m.

    This is going to be a fun year for Utah fans! A lot of new faces on offense, a lot of returning studs on defense. Plenty of question marks. But if I have learned one thing, you just never underestimate Kyle Whittingham and his ability to reload.

    GO UTES!

  • afro14 Sandy, UT
    March 16, 2011 8:14 a.m.

    This offense has a lot of emerging weapons, it'll be fun to see Langi develop over the years and a healthy Wynn means impressive numbers again. He'll do better in a pro-style offense since he's not as mobile as a spread system needs. With Chow and Whittingham working together, the U is going to have an impressive offense

  • jefferysl Huntsville, Alabama
    March 16, 2011 7:52 a.m.

    UW fan here. It sounds like a rebuilding year for the Utes...I guess it depends on how well the depth guys from last year and any new talent steps up. I do think that Wynn will benefit from Chow's West coast hybrid offense. He's a good passer and not a runner. It's a complex offense that depends a lot on reads of the defense from both the QB and the receivers. It'll take time to master.

  • hedgehog Ann Arbor, MI
    March 16, 2011 7:37 a.m.


    Unlike broco and the tds, the Utes don't over sell themselves just to appease the delusional.

    If you read Dicks article on the kewgs you would have thought he was talking about the Auburn Tigers. Funny how Dick can always be counted on feeding the piping hot cornbread after one day of spring practice. Year after year after year....

    If Dick was rational, he would focus in on how the tds will find a way to beat USU this year.

    On another note: Norm Chow recuited Shreve when he was at UCLA...I suspect he secretly favors the kid and I expect Shreve to be put in a position to challenge Wynn this fall.

  • nunya sacramento, ca
    March 16, 2011 3:11 a.m.

    um, just say it....chow and wittenheimer really don't have anything for the team from SLCommunity. looking forward to seeing yutah lose all their games.

  • sammyg Springville, UT
    March 16, 2011 1:01 a.m.

    "Griff Robles and freshman Tyler Shreve are splitting the snaps."

    Oh no! A two QB system? Just kidding!

    Sounds like things are progressing but the report just doesn't sound overly positive either. Bridled optimism. Are the coaches preparing the fans for something less this season?

    Doesn't sound 'Rosey'.