Utah Utes football: Joe Kruger to forego senior season, enter NFL Draft

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  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    Jan. 5, 2013 7:27 p.m.

    @Navel Lint

    Wow, you're still using that tired ol' "frantic and emotional" line?! Haven't you been using that since the '90s? Maybe its time to retire that and come up with some new material. It was probably good the first few years you used it but years later it sort of becomes a little passe and pathetic, like using the terms, "Grooooovy" or "Far out Man!", "Bees Knees", "Cat's Meow", or "Gnarly dude", etc.

    As for Joe Kruger, congrats to him on the choice. I think he'll be happy with it. He's got a unique build and enough athleticism to be an intriguing prospect as a 5 technique defensive end. Teams might consider his potential enough to take him fairly high, middle rounds maybe. He benefited this past season with STar taking double and triple teams from opposing OL's and that freed him up. He won't have that luxury next year and is smart to strike now while the iron is hot.

  • BigCougar Bountiful, UT
    Jan. 5, 2013 7:21 p.m.

    "Reality dudes, you should try it sometime."

    Ahhhh yes...reality....I think ute fans are now getting in touch with it. I'm hearing fewer and fewer bold pre-season predictions of Rose Bowl glory and Pac12 domination. It's interesting to note that a few yrs ago on these very message boards (and countless others) BYU fans were predicting Utah would quickly settle into being a middle to lower tier pac12 team while most ute fans were defiantly predicting quick Pac12 domination and Rose Bowl berths.

    Looking at the "reality" of it, utah is plummeting fast and looks to be pretty much on the mark with the "reality" that BYU fans had predicted than the "reality" that ute fans were wishfully dreaming of.

  • VegasUte Las Vegas, NV
    Jan. 4, 2013 1:48 p.m.

    To little Ducky - where's Fangupo?

    To all little kitties - where's Reid?

    To all the happy little southies and their "giant" fan base - 2.2 million viewers for the big bowl game? Seriously? Utah State drew $2.6 this year. Navy - SDSU drew 3.6 for the same game two years ago.

    Reality dudes, you should try it sometime.

    Go Utes!! One more Ute in the NFL!!

  • Naval Vet Philadelphia, PA
    Jan. 4, 2013 9:02 a.m.


    Still with the redirection? It didn't work before. What made you think it would work THIS time around? Quit being so frantic and emotional.

  • Tilka PORTLAND, OR
    Jan. 3, 2013 6:27 p.m.

    Knew him in High School. Almost as big of a jerk as his dad.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Jan. 3, 2013 5:28 p.m.

    @naval lint

    So you can't answer the quetion huh? Or you are just to embarrassed to answer the question. Either way FAIL!


  • Naval Vet Philadelphia, PA
    Jan. 3, 2013 2:20 p.m.


    So in other words what you're saying is, you don't disagree with anything I said. Your failure to refute is noted in your poor attempt at redirection. Typical.

    Congratulations on playing in your 3rd consecutive bowl that nobody really watched. Mid-majors forever.

  • VegasUte Las Vegas, NV
    Jan. 3, 2013 1:45 p.m.

    Good luck Joe - it was fun watching you play for the right team!!

    All you little kitty trollers just crack me up!! You southies have NOTHING to be hopeful for in happy town, so you have to troll Utah stories. Too funny.

    Keep dreaming southies!!

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Jan. 3, 2013 1:07 p.m.

    @naval vet

    What "post season" did utah participate in this year?

    Talk about "frantic and emotional".


  • Naval Vet Philadelphia, PA
    Jan. 3, 2013 11:56 a.m.


    Wayne Howard? Still stuck in the 80s are we? Don't be so frantic and emotional. Your obsession with Utah and Ute fans had left you keenly aware that Wayne Howard hadn't coached on the Hill in over 30 years, and that the U is now on its 5th head coach since he left. Here is what Utah's CURRENT head coach has had to say:

    "Our goal is to try to win the (Pac-12) South. That's going to be our goal year in and year out." -- Kyle Whittingham

    So it looks like I got it right. How miserable for you. In fact, what a miserable decade these past 10 years had been for you and your kind. No BCS bowl invites. No relevant conference invites. Only 3 wins against your big brother, and yet ANOTHER mid-majorey postseason.

    And of course you've all been forced to jump on the TCU, Colorado, and Utah St. bandwagons these past few years, since you weren't able to do as they did -- beat Utah.

    LES only sold out 1 home game these past couple of years. And that was the Utah game. Case closed.

  • 4601 Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 3, 2013 10:36 a.m.

    Smart decision. Get out while the getting is good. The PAC 12 maybe isn't such a great draw after all. USC is rolled by Georgia Tech who was trounced at home by the Y and Stanford barely slips by a 5 loss Badger team.

  • toosmartforyou Farmington, UT
    Jan. 3, 2013 10:30 a.m.

    @ Naval Vet

    You're got it backwards. That's because you're looking in a mirror. Why did the Utah fans rush the field three times after their bloggers derided BYU for doing it once in a previous game? Utah's #1 priority since Wayne Howard became the coach is to "beat BYU," saying "the hatred is just beginning to grow" and Urban Meyer wouldn't give his opponent the respect of saying their name, but had his cutsie "Team Down South" mentality firmly entrenched on the gullible Muss.

    This year that's all we're heard about---how Utah again beat BYU---but then, that's all Utah did this year, too. They lost to USU (who BYU beat) and they didn't go to a bowl game, either. Oh (my bad for forgetting) they did beat Northern Colorado, too.

    Speaking of Colorado, they are your new rival. You and they and Washington State can enjoy the cellar of the PAC 12 and not have beating BYU to crow about any more. Good riddance, I say, to that unnecessary game where Y fans are in jeopardy for their personal safety when played in SLC.

    I think Max was right after all.

  • 54-10 Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 3, 2013 10:19 a.m.

    Duckhunter writing before thinking again.

    You're talking about the wrong Reynolds dude. Dallas is the one who starts for the Eagles, not Matt.

    Tough to reach all those lofty first year levels as you described when you are on the practice squad.

    As you would say "FAIL".

  • midpacmajor Salt Lake City, Utah
    Jan. 3, 2013 10:15 a.m.

    Naval Vet

    How depressing it must be for our delusional little friends on the hill to realize that after all of their chest beating, that the Utes are nothing more than cannon fodder for the big boys of the conference.

    Washington State and Colorado appreciate the company.

  • Naval Vet Philadelphia, PA
    Jan. 3, 2013 9:46 a.m.


    To answer your question, the Pac-12 has a contract with ESPN AND FOX, of which Utah's 1/12th share DWARFS the Indy-WACers. And that fact leaves you teeming with jealous rage. How miserable it must be for you to know your boys will be mid-majors forever. Haha!

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Jan. 3, 2013 9:19 a.m.

    KVN/Hoff want 0-4 against UTAH,

    Cougars, and Aggies went bowling while the utes stayed home. Ha! Do the utes have an ESPN contract, or are they in the PAC to improve the win/loss records of the others?

  • Naval Vet Philadelphia, PA
    Jan. 3, 2013 7:20 a.m.


    "The whole BYU team just doesn't seem to get up psychologically for the Utes as the Utes do for BYU."

    Beating our little brother 3 in a row, and 8 of the last 11 isn't about winning the "psychological" battle on the field. It's about simply being the better team, with better players, and a better coaching staff.

    Besides, Utah's priority #1 each year is winning the Pac-12 South Division. On the other hand, "job one" for the cougars is beating the Utes. So the Y "gets up for the game" with deeper fervor than the U does. Just because we keep beating you doesn't imply that this game means more to us than it does to you. The truth is, you're just not that important to us anymore. And that's why Utah will be playing Michigan and Fresno St. in 2014 and 2015 instead of the Y, and that's also why Y fans are more up in arms about it than U fans.

  • Qwest Perfected Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 11:41 p.m.

    This will obviously hurt the Utes defense next year no way around that. They have a lot of big holes to fill with guys graduating and I don't think many saw this coming. I thought the same thing about his brother Paul a few years ago but the Utes regrouped and it ended up ok for both parties.

    There is good and bad but if he can get drafted, that also helps recruiting as well.

    Good luck to Joe and all the rest of the Utes trying to make it to the next level!

    Go Utes!

  • toosmartforyou Farmington, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 10:35 p.m.

    It was just too painful to not play in a bowl game this year and that was likely to happen again next year (two misses in a row) so it is time to leave the Titanic. Good luck in the NFL.

  • Skyline_Ute SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 9:08 p.m.


    Are you possibly getting your Reynolds brothers confused? According to the Eagles website, Matt was signed to the practice squad after being cut by the panthers. He hasn't even been on the active roster all year. So how do you say he is a "sure fire all rookie" and being mentioned for the pro bowl? So the point still holds that Utah puts players in the NFL while BYU doesn't. Just look at the comparison between Matt and Tony Bergstrom. They were recruited at the same time, with Matt being ranked higher. Bergstrom gets drafted in the 3rd round, plays in half of the Raiders games this year and starts in the last one. Meanwhile Reynolds gets cut from one team and gets signed to the practice squad of another. We'll see how long he last there now that Andy Reid isn't around.

    Anyway, it's going to be fun rooting for another Ute in the league. We'll miss you Joe, but wish you nothing but the best in the NFL.

  • Sportsman Salt Lake, Ut
    Jan. 2, 2013 7:59 p.m.

    Both Kruger and Van Noy are crazy to leave and stay respectfully. One won't get drafted and the other is risking alot by choosing to stay. I wish them both lots of luck but the odds are against them making a team or raising their stock with another season.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 7:31 p.m.


    If any of that were the case you wouldn't have to be on here trying to convince us of it. Fail.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 5:46 p.m.


    Actually Matt Reynolds probably will make more money because of this. He signed a small, one year, free agent deal. If he had been a 3rd round pick or lower he would have signed a small multi year deal. He can now sign a much larger multi year deal. That is the irony of it.

    Hoffman probably would have been a low round pick this year so for him it was easily the right decision, Van Noy on the otherhand appears to have been a likely high round pick, at least 2nd round. It is absolutely a risk, just like it was for Star, to stay, but it is what he wanted to do, just like Star.

    Some guys want to finish what they started, some guys want to hold off getting a job, some guys want to stay a youth for just one more year, some want to get their degree. I'm not sure which of those reasons were Van Noy's, or Star's, maybe all of them, but they made the decision that was right for them now matter how it turns out. Just like Matt Reynolds.

    Jan. 2, 2013 5:11 p.m.


    "The whole BYU team just doesn't seem to get up psychologically for the Utes as the Utes do for BYU."

    Haha. Don't you wish that were the case. The truth is, the Utah's program is simply much better than BYU's.


    "Is it just my imagination, or did Hedgehog change his moniker to Chris B? And has now changed to KVN/Hoff."

    Not sure about that. But it is obvious that "duckhunter" and sammyg are one and the same.

    @BYU fans in general

    It's pretty sad when so many of you have to spend all of your time and efforts trolling articles on the Utes in an attempt to bring them down. But what you all don't realize is that to people outside of the state, it's all about the results on the field. And that would be in Utah's favor, starting with 3 in a row, 4 out of the last 5, 8 out of 11, and overall 56-34-4.

    Please show a little humility.

  • RBN Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 3:56 p.m.


    Matt Reynolds left a ton of money on the table by staying his senior season. I'm glad to see him playing and playing well. The fact remains that he likely would have been better off not staying his senior season.

    I think Star staying his senior season was a risk.

  • RBN Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 3:52 p.m.

    @ Troy town
    I don't have a problem with a player leaving to the NFL early. They should go when they are ready. I just don't think that Joe Krueger was ready. I think KVN is ready and should leave before he hurts his shoulder again.

    How is that inconsistent?

  • CougFaninTX Frisco, TX
    Jan. 2, 2013 3:49 p.m.

    Is it just my imagination, or did Hedgehog change his moniker to Chris B? And has now changed to KVN/Hoff.

  • wer South Jordan, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 3:36 p.m.

    Bad for the Utes. Good for everybody else.

    NFL? Not likely.

  • There You Go Again Saint George, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 3:11 p.m.

    Joe Kruger played for UTAH this year?

  • Two For Flinching Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 3:06 p.m.

    Early depth chart looks like Hunter Dimick and Nate Fakahafua will take over the ends now, with Niasi Leota rotating in. Junior Salt and Tenny Palepoi will be at tackle with Seni Fauonuku getting significant reps as well.

    The D line will be alright. It's the linebackers that really need some work. I think Coach Whitt would be smart to move Thretton Palamo off D-end and put him at linebacker. He's fast enough to pick up receivers coming off the line and out of the backfield and he's big enough to help with run support.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 2:42 p.m.

    @big j

    You actually made the most level headed post of any utah "fan" on this article. utah does have a record of developing dlinemen so based on that one would have to give them the benefit of the doubt that they will get a good one to replace him. But there is a "but" to that. He was a 3 year starter wasn't he? At minimum he was a major 3 year contributor and was going to be a senior, that is not that easy to just replace. Does anyone know who that replacement might be and what they have done up to this point? Regardless it is a blow to them, no way around that fact.

  • Spokane Ute Spokane, WA
    Jan. 2, 2013 2:22 p.m.

    I wish Joe all the luck in the world, but wish he'd stay for his senior season.

  • Big J Bountiful, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 2:22 p.m.

    The great thing about D-1 football is the ever changing landscape. Utah has had many great D linemen over the years and each time one left another took over. Utah will replace all those leaving this year. I am sorry to see Joe go but that is life. I wish him all the best
    Go Utes!

  • backpacn Sandy, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 2:14 p.m.

    Kyle Van Noy - 51 tackles, 36 solo, 13 sacks, 2 int, 2 TD
    Rated number 4 out of 244 OLB's

    Joe Kruger - 30 tackles, 19 solo, 6 sacks, 1 int, 1 TD
    Rated number 17 out of 235 DE's

  • TroyTown Anaheim, CA
    Jan. 2, 2013 1:46 p.m.


    The inconsistency of Utah fans and their misguided spin is laughable.

    Star stayed an extra year because he expected the Utes to have a special season in 2012.

    After watching Utah's sorry 2012, Joe decided there was nothing worth sticking around for. Why waste a year playing for another losing team?

    Jan. 2, 2013 1:45 p.m.

    This is obviously getting blown out of proportion by fans on both sides already. I expected Joe to come back, but I'm sure he did a lot of consultation with draft analysts and is making the best decision for him at the time. Now time for Nate Fakahafua and the crew to reload and work hard for next year. Good luck to Joe and Dave both.

  • Dave S Holladay, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 1:39 p.m.

    RE: CougarBlue

    That's the best excuse I've heard yet!! "BYU team just doesn't seem to get up psychologically for the Utes as the Utes do for BYU"

    I guess I'd be searching for answers as well if I was a byu fan.

  • skywalker Palo Alto, CA
    Jan. 2, 2013 1:31 p.m.

    LOL at the spin our little brothers are trying to put on Hoffman and KVN staying at BYU, while one of Utah's few remaining defensive stars is abandoning the Utes.

    The truth is, as nice as it would be for Utah fans to see Joe succeed at the next level, this is a devasting blow to a Utah defense that has already been gutted by graduation losses.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 1:27 p.m.

    And the hits just keep coming for utah "fans" LOL!

    I can't help but think there is more to this than meets the eye because this kid has not been projected as any sort of NFL draft pick this year. I'm guessing he got an evaluation done and it came back somewhat positive? good luck to him, I hope it works out. I gotta believe he wanted to jump off of that sinking ship to the north.


    So you hope that for KVN's sake he doesn't become an NFL starter, sure fire all rookie teamer and get some actual Pro Bowl mention like Matt Reynolds has/is?

  • Uteanymous Salt Lake City, Utah
    Jan. 2, 2013 1:22 p.m.


    "I'm glad to have a coach the puts players in the NFL and is glad when they make it, rather than a coach that talks his players into staying when it's not in their best interests."

    More Utah fan hysteria... cite one legitimate source that anybody at BYU talked Hoffman and Van Noy into staying at BYU.

    btw, did Whit talk Star into staying at Utah when it wasn't in his best interests?

  • Uteanymous Salt Lake City, Utah
    Jan. 2, 2013 1:21 p.m.

    "Kind of like he did to Wynn/Hayes last year?"

    Only a BYU-hater pretending to be a Utah fan wouldn't know that Wynn's career was already over before the Utes played BYU in 2012 or this could have been Wynn's final play:

    Jon Hays sacked by Kyle Van Noy for a loss of 2 yards...

    No, the whooping KVN is going to lay on Wilson next season will be more like the whooping he layed on the Aztecs this year.

  • RBN Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 1:10 p.m.


    I'm glad to have a coach the puts players in the NFL and is glad when they make it, rather than a coach that talks his players into staying when it's not in their best interests. For KVN's sake, I hope it doesn't turn out like it did for Matt Reynolds.

    And what's all this talk about shaking in their boots? That's about as delusional as thinking that Andy Reid would even consider being the OC at BYU.

  • CougarBlue Heber City, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 1:03 p.m.

    Great player, just for the wrong team. Wish him well.

    The whole BYU team just doesn't seem to get up psychologically for the Utes as the Utes do for BYU.

  • Utah Alum Orem, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 1:01 p.m.

    With the loss of Star Lotulelei, Joe Kruger, Dave Kruger, Reggie Topps, Moe Lee, and Ryan Lacy, the Utes are losing most of their top defensive talent from a defense that was already struggling.

    Good luck to neighbors and friends Joe and Dave at the next level.

  • KVN/Hoff want 0-4 against UTAH Ogden, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 12:54 p.m.


    "Can't wait for KVN to unleash a serious whooping on Wilson next season."

    Kind of like he did to Wynn/Hayes last year?

    And the year before that?

    And the year before that?

  • RBN Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 12:44 p.m.

    I didn't see that one coming. I hope this isn't another Sealver Silinga case (although he looks like he's worked himself into the NFL with Denver). Joe's got talent and size, but also a proclivity for making bonehead plays.

  • scott Alpine, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 12:42 p.m.

    Joe leaving the Utes is devasting news to a Utah defense that was already losing most of its best players.

    Good luck to Joe!

  • uteBusters Park City, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 12:39 p.m.

    Gotta laugh at our BYU-hating friend from Ogden trying to spin Hoffman and KVN staying at BYU as a bad decision. The truth is Utah fans are shaking in their boots at the prospect of Star and Joe leaving the Utes helpless against the Cougars next season.

    Good luck to Star and Joe.


    btw, wishful thinking 0-fer

    It was Joe's dad who was mainly responsible for his sons attending Utah - Whit was barely involved except to accept their LOAs.

    Joe is obviously leaving because he no longer wishes to be part of a program in steady decline.

    Can't wait for KVN to unleash a serious whooping on Wilson next season.

  • motorbike Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 12:38 p.m.

    I don't blame Joe and I wish him the best. Joe had some nagging injuries to deal with this past season and I'd guess part of his decision stems from that. Why risk a greater injury next season when his health is good right now? Not to mention I'm sure he's already got a decent idea of what his likely draft position will be.
    I hope Dave gets a shot somewhere as well, it would be awesome to see three brothers on NFL rosters at one time.
    Good luck Joe!

  • KVN/Hoff want 0-4 against UTAH Ogden, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 12:17 p.m.

    Chalk up another kid recruited by Whittingham and put in the NFL. I think that puts the number around 25 of kids Whit recruited and put in the NFL, compared to around 2 or 3 for Bronco and Gary Anderson.

  • KVN/Hoff want 0-4 against UTAH Ogden, UT
    Jan. 2, 2013 12:16 p.m.

    Great decision!

    We all remember what happened when the Reynolds kid went from multimillionaire and first round pick to ....

    not even drafted!

    School will always be there if you want it in the future. Go get that paycheck Joe! I don't blame you at all!