Dan Sorensen: Winning is the answer on recruiting front for Utah football

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  • TanMan_101 West Jordan, UT
    Oct. 6, 2013 10:38 p.m.


    You're absolutely correct, we don't have any 11-2 top 15 finishes. We prefer to go 13-0 and finish in the top 3.

  • AntelopeValleyUte Palmdale, CA
    Oct. 6, 2013 1:51 p.m.

    Utah will start competing and becoming a threat in the Pac-12 when they start winning games with the recruits/players they have. If Utah has more Ws than Ls, than recruits will show more interest than they do now. Plus, coaching staff needs to recruit the right type of players to compete in the Pac-12, and be able to coach. People compare which school has the most recruits, Utah or BYU? It doesn't matter, recruits will go to BYU because they are either Mormon or have grown an interest in BYU. It doesn't matter how many recruits a year each school gets, its what the coaches can do with those players.

    Whitt is a good coach, but he is not a PAC-12 or BCS level coach. Neither is Mendenhall. All they are good for his coaching against each other in the state of Utah. That type of coaching is not going to cut it against BCS-caliber competition. Winning a game here and there isn't going to cut it. They must be consistent, and they are not.

    Look at Oregon and Stanford, the success those schools have had. Speaks volumes of the front office and coaching staff.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Oct. 5, 2013 6:00 p.m.


    Apparently you've been watching the wrong games.

    * Utah hasn't trailed in 10 straight quarters against BYU.

    * BYU never lost because of missed field goals. BYU lost in 2010 because Utah blocked a field goal. In 2012 BYU missed a game TYING field goal only because of "15 yard penalty" on the MUSS.

    * Utah State was down 14-3 after the 1st Quarter, they only lead from :20 secs left in the 2nd to :54 left in the 3rd. Then again for 4 minutes in the 4th, so about 19 minutes total.

    According to Scouts BYU has had better recruiting classes until 2010. That is when Utah went to the PAC-12, at that point Utah became the flagship football program in the State according to top local talent.

  • Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 5, 2013 3:42 p.m.


    It's often said football is a game of inches. That obviously usually refers to actual distances on the field, but certainly if most football minds think small differences make very large differences in outcomes, a difference between a team averaging 2.0 stars and a team averaging 2.5 stars is a very big deal, just as having a few extra inches is often a very big deal.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Oct. 5, 2013 3:00 p.m.

    The top two MWC teams are both struggling at the next level of college football.

    No idea why BYU fans are ripping Utah because BYU wouldn't do any better, most likely worse considering they can't even compete against TCU or Utah.

    IMO the Utah is improving, baby steps, but nevertheless improving. Huge game next week against #5 Stanford. If Utah has any chance of winning the game we need both the offense and defense to show up. In the PAC-12 we are minus 8 in turnovers, we must win the turnover margin next week.

  • poyman Lincoln City, OR
    Oct. 5, 2013 12:14 a.m.

    It's actually beyond amazing to me that so many ute fans actually believe that a minor difference in the total number of stars proves that it is the deciding factor in giving utah wins over BYU and Utah State...

    Did you guys even watch the games? utah has beaten BYU 4 times in a row... Congratulations... 2 of the 4 was because BYU missed a field goal attempt on the final play of the game, one was a drubbing and the last one was because a Kick Return was called back... In 3 of the 4 games BYU outperformed utah in total yards on offense and in total first downs.

    Utah State beat utah last year, and they probably should have won this year... USU lost, but they led the entire game and it came down to the final posession...

    Stars had nothing to do with it... The talent is equal... the difference was the breaks...

  • PG #1 FAN Lindon, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 10:42 p.m.

    Every kid dreams of playing in Bowl Games. Unless the rules are changed 4-8 won't get you there. Utah will not see another Bowl game this decade. The new Utah recruiting pitch will be that you will never miss time to study for finals because of football. The Utah season will end in late November every year. Good for academics, bad for recruiting. Christy will never have to worry about December travel plans to see his Uties, he can hang out with them at the new football facility and watch all the bowl games on TV.

  • Sports Are Great Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 10:25 p.m.

    DeepBlue, no one said a recruiting class is everything. But again, Nick Saban wouldn't be dominating the nation if he had byu's players. And I'm a byu fan! There is a huge difference in the talent level of our players and their players. Let's not be ridiculous and pretend there isn't a huge talent gap. Does that guarantee them success? No, and no one is saying it does.

    Look at Alabama, LSU, Auburn, Florida, and all the other recent national champions and if you check out their recruiting classes leading up to their championships, you'll find that each and every one of them had great(high average stars) recruiting classes leading up to their championships. Coincidence?


  • Real Bass Idaho Falls, ID
    Oct. 4, 2013 7:50 p.m.

    The utes were a weak sister for most of their years in the WAC and MWC. It's no wonder they can't compete in the PAC. Their recruiting will level out and drop off as recruits see their ongoing failure to thrive in conference play.

  • nothegame Saratoga Springs, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 5:13 p.m.

    Nice article I just asked the same question on Ute zone. It does matter and you could see the talent that UCLA had. Utah like BYU and USU do a good job coaching the kids they have. But talent usually wins. Not always but most of the time. If you can coach 2 and 3 star players to be good then the same kids that are 4 and 5 star athletes will be great and a lot will be NFL players. I am worried about that aspect for Utah we are not playing to win Byu and USU we won both games it only counts though if we can beat teams in the Pac 12. I don't have the answer to that question though. I know that we are about 7th or 8th in the pecking order in California.

  • runnerguy50 Virginia Beach, Va
    Oct. 4, 2013 4:14 p.m.

    I'm curious to see if Utah stops going after LDS players. It looks as if Utah doesn't want LDS players to me. The pictures of Utah players making fun of LDS baptisms, KW insulting the intelligence of LDS people by denying it was directed at LDS folks, the obsentacies yelled at and directed to BYU fans in SLC should all be indications that LDS kids are not welcome on the campus in SLC.

  • DeepBlue Anaheim, CA
    Oct. 4, 2013 1:56 p.m.

    Sports Are Great

    Did Mack Brown, whose Texas team won a consensus national championship in 2005, suddenly forget how to coach in 2013 so that his team, loaded with 4- and 5-star recruits, got destroyed by BYU?

    Did Bob Stoops, whose Oklahoma team won national championships in 2000 and 2003, suddenly forget how to coach in 2009 so that his team, loaded with 4- and 5-star recruits, was beaten by BYU?

    Did Nick Saban, whose LSU and Alabama teams won national championships in 2003, 2009, 2011, and 2012, suddenly forget how to coach in 2008 so that his team, loaded with 4- and 5-star recruits, was beaten by Utah?

    The truth is, there's MUCH more involved in winning than talent and coaching.

    Fans who think that signing a Top 10 recruiting class is the end-all-be-all of future football success, are only fooling themselves.

    There are plenty of "higher ranked star teams" that have been complete busts, and, there are numerous examples of less talented teams rising to the top.

  • Alterego Harrisville, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 12:39 p.m.

    Welcome to the party Ute fans. Please feel free to meet at the back door with the rest of us.

    Best Regards,

    Kansas Fan
    Vanderbilt Fan
    Duke Fan
    Iowa State Fan
    Washington State Fan

  • Sports Are Great Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 12:37 p.m.


    "Let's not confuse NFL draft potential with college football success. Lots of players who excel in college, fail to make it in the NFL.Look no further than Brian Wilson, who lead the Utes to their greatest win ever in the Sugar Bowl, but failed to even make an NFL roster."

    Its Brian Johnson(Wilson is a baseball player), and although yes he had a great year, the question again is how would the team have been with a worse/better QB? What if that year in 2008 the Utes had a more talented QB(Collin Kaepernick, Russel Wilson, RG III), would Utah have been better or worse? I think most people would say better.

    You haven't disproven anything that Chris has said by showing that Brian Johnson did a good job on a good team. Typically(not always) recruiting services get it mostly right. And I'd take a more talented BYU team over a less talented BYU team any day. Wouldn't you?

  • Sports Are Great Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 12:26 p.m.

    BlueCoug, You're beating around the issue. Although there may be 4 and 5 stars recruits who feel entitled, but certainly you don't believe there aren't 2-3 star recruits who also feel entitled do you? Or that there aren't 4-5 star recruits who don't feel entitled? Let's also not suggest great athletes can't be good kids too.

    The question you chose to avoid is this: Which team is more likely to be better, a team with 1 and 2 star guys or a team with mostly 3 and some 4 star guys? Again, the coach at any given school is the same whether he has 1-2 star guys or mostly 3 star guys. I'd love having a BYU team full of 3 star guys willing to work their behinds off, more so than a team of 1-2 star guys willing to work their behinds off.

    @Duckhunter, I love a Utah loss more than anyone. And Chris B paints their fan base pretty accurately. But there is truth to his statements that higher ranked star teams typically do better, and athletic ability is a big reason why.

  • Pipes Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 12:24 p.m.

    So all the 4 and 5 star recruits that want to be home for the Holidays will pick the utes and those that want to play in the post season will pick BYU and USU!

  • RockOn Spanish Fork, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 12:18 p.m.

    Losers whine. Utah is as relevant in the PAC 12 as Colorado, Arizona, and Washington State. None of these 4 schools could reach the pinacle of any BCS conference. They are like Duke, Vanderbilt, and other perenial bottom dwellers in power conferences. Fodder. For any of their supporters to get sanctimonious and beat their chest that they are in a power conference is laughable.

    No doubt Utah is in a better recruiter position being in the PAC12 than BYU being independent. Utah gets more players into the NFL. With such an advantage you'd think they blow out BYU every year -- and they should with the fact that they get more **** recruits.

    With BYU's inherent obstacles of honor, spirit and tradition, it's a wonder they ever get a Van Noy and aren't FCS or DII. But, they can only squeek out wins and sometimes lose. Obviously Utah has problems that red kool-aid drinkers can't face.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 12:06 p.m.

    @sports are great

    The irony of christina's claims lies in the FACT that utah is a losing program at the bottom of its conference. Who care's if she is "right" if her team cannot win games? Quit trying to defend christina when she is indefensible. Her team is a loser, and it doesn't matter how many claims she makes.

  • BlueCoug Orem, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 12:02 p.m.

    Sports Are Great

    Let's not confuse NFL draft potential with college football success. Lots of players who excel in college, fail to make it in the NFL.

    Look no further than Brian Wilson, who lead the Utes to their greatest win ever in the Sugar Bowl, but failed to even make an NFL roster.

    Frankly, I'll take a bunch of 2- and 3-star recruits who are willing to work their behinds off, over a bunch of 4- and 5-star recruits who play with a sense of entitlement that all they have to do to win is show up on game day.

    Bronco recruits the types of players who best fit the unique profile required of a BYU athlete. We all saw what happened when Crowton strayed away from those standards.

  • talkinsports Gilbert, AZ
    Oct. 4, 2013 11:50 a.m.


    Of BYU, Utah, and USU, which is the only school to have lost to TWO 10+ loss teams in the last 6 years?

    The truth is, Kyle has proven, despite Utah's supposed "vast superiority" in talent, that he and the Utes are capable of losing to ANYBODY.


    PAC nothing to beat your chest about, yet

    Bronco has had three 11-win, Top 15 finishes since 2006.

    How many 11-win, Top 15 finishes have the Utes had, EVER?

    Face it, the Utes had a couple of great, perfect storm seasons in 2004 and 2008, but other than that, the Utes haven't done diddly on the national stage.


    lifetime 11+ win seasons
    BYU 11
    Utah 2

    lifetime 10+ win seasons
    BYU 16
    Utah 6

  • Sports Are Great Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 11:43 a.m.

    continued from prior post..

    "If you are a four-star prospect, you have a 4.3% chance of being drafted in the first round (13/300), and as a three-star recruit, you have a 1.3% chance of going in the first round (10/800). It's safe to say, that the higher-ranked prospects have a dramatically better chance of landing in the first round."

    It's fair to say being drafted in the first round is as good of a measure of talent as anything else.

    Chris B is rarely right, but when he is, let's admit we can take facts. More often than not the recruiting services get it right and the best teams usually have better athletes and better coaching. Chris has never said its the only thing, just that recruiting is important, and that USUALLY the recruiting services are right.

    Coaches(Bronco included) will do the best they can. But I'd take Bronco's coaching and a more talented team over Bronco's coaching and a less talented team any day. Stop trying to disprove Chris wrong when he is right.

  • Sports Are Great Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 11:38 a.m.

    @Mussing and all other byu fans - I'm a byu fan as well, and as unbelievable as it sounds, this is one area I actually agree with Chris B on. Let's admit it when he's right.

    I just found this article, which I thought was interesting. Admittedly it only studied 2012 draft, but I have a hard time believing that other drafts, or taking every draft since recruiting services really took off would give significantly different conclusions. From Athlon Sports:

    "On the surface, it appears that a five-star recruit is just as likely to get drafted in the first round as the two-stars, considering that four of each were taken this year. But that isn't using math correctly. There are only 25-30 five-star recruits in any given year while there are roughly 1,600-1,800 two-stars each cycle. Therefore, if you are rated as five-star, you have roughly a 13.3% chance to get drafted in the first round (4/30). But if you are a two-star prospect, you have a 0.2% chance of being drafted in the first round (4/1,800)."

    "A pretty massive difference."

    to be continued..

  • Brave Sir Robin San Diego, CA
    Oct. 4, 2013 11:29 a.m.

    @Reno Cougs Fan 68

    "Is Utah going to put the recruiting trophy in the same case as the State of Utah championship trophy or does it have its own case?"

    As a BYU fan, maybe you should tell us. After all, your school invented the term "February Championship" to describe all those awesome recruiting classes, and seeing as you don't have a conference, the State of Utah trophy is the only one you've got to play for. Sadly, you're finishing 3rd out of 3 in that contest.

  • Pac 12 Pride Salt Lake, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 11:26 a.m.

    Mussing, Chris never said it was the only factor. In fact he says coaching is a big factor.

    Be honest, how would Nick Saban be doing if he coached at byu and Bronco coached with Saban's players at Alabama? You think byu would have 3 national championships the last four years? Nope! And while it may be true Utah and byu are going after fewer of the same kids, Chris also mentions average stars which Utah has won. So yes, Utah has had the recruiting edge, not just with a handful of players.

    Keep telling yourself that byu's 1 and 2 star team is not much different in talent than the 4 and 5 stars that Nick Saban has, or that the stars aren't indicative of the difference in talent level.

  • Christopher B Ogden, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 11:21 a.m.


    Yes, I've long said we need to reduce recruiting in the state.

    And Whittingham has done exactly that. Over half of our roster is out of state, and the out of state percentage has increased the last several years compared to the prior decades.

    And that is a good thing.

    Look at the players to go to the NFL from Utah, byu, and usu the last decade. Nearly all are NOT from the state of Utah. And there aren't too many kids from Utah who attended colleges elsewhere that were drafted either.

    So yes, let's leave the typical Utah boy to byu and usu. that's more their level

  • Veritas Aequitas Fruit Heights, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 11:17 a.m.

    Christopher B
    Ogden, UT

    This is true, and I've been saying it for years.

    Let me give you another fact.

    If Utah had scored more points than all the teams they have played in the past twenty years, they would be undefeated for those twenty years.

    Keep throwing out the "truth" and "facts"...

  • Reno Cougs Fan 68 Reno, NV
    Oct. 4, 2013 11:09 a.m.


    Maybe Utah needs to stop recruiting in the State of Utah completely because even getting the cream of the crop you are still 0-2 in conference and 0-2 outside the State of Utah!!! How does Utah rank against the other schools in the conference in recruiting? Is Utah going to put the recruiting trophy in the same case as the State of Utah championship trophy or does it have its own case? LOL

  • Christopher B Ogden, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 11:09 a.m.

    There is a reason Utah wins the great majority of the games against lower schools usu and byu and a reason Utah has lost most games against good Pac 12 teams:


    Stars matter

    Roscoe would be wise to learn the average 1-2 star is not the same as an average 3 star.

  • MUSSing with U Baltimore, MD
    Oct. 4, 2013 11:06 a.m.


    Kyle and Bronco has both said that BYU and Utah only go head-to-head for a handful of recruits every year, so even if 100% picked Utah over BYU, you're only talking about 5 or 6 recruits, total. Of course, we all know that's not the case, so go on deluding yourself into believing Utah is somehow winning the recruiting war.

    btw, BYU is 5-1 lifetime versus Oklahoma(2-0) and Texas(3-1), so despite the vast disparity in 4- and 5-star recruits, stars are obviously not the only factor, or even the most important factor, in determining success on the field.

  • Ifel Of'a-sofa Alpine, Utah
    Oct. 4, 2013 10:49 a.m.

    how about forgetting about "stars" and just win games.

    you have only had 1 road game so far and that was at byu. the rest have been at Pick City and you are only 3-2 0-2.

    keep reaching for the stars

  • Snack PAC Olympus Cove, Utah
    Oct. 4, 2013 10:47 a.m.


    The Utes are 7-13 in the PAC and well on their way to another losing, bowl-less season, and you're still obsessed with how Utah's recruiting compares to BYU's recruiting?

    Once a little brother, always a little brother.

  • Ifel Of'a-sofa Alpine, Utah
    Oct. 4, 2013 10:47 a.m.

    Christopher... Welcome to Pick City

  • Christopher B Ogden, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 10:41 a.m.

    And byu fans keep trying to tell me a team full of 1 and 2 star nobodies is as talented as average 3 star team.

    Yes, coaching comes into play.

    But recruiting is HUGE

    And although the recruiting services "miss" on many guys a year, on AVERAGE they get it right.

    Take a look at these FACTS:

    A 5 star has a higher probability of being drafter than a 4 star
    A 4 star higher than a 3 star
    A 3 star higher than a 2 star

    A byu fan once tried to tell me "more 3 stars have been drafted than 5 stars" in attempting to suggest there is no difference in talent.

    While his statement was true, what he was implying was flat out wrong.

    They give out very very few 5 and 4 stars and tons of 2 and 3 stars.

    It would be like me saying "There are more people under 7 feet in the NBA than over" and trying to claim height isn't important. Yes it is, there are just fewer of them. But a person over 7 feet has a higher chance of playing in the NBA than someone under 7 feet.

  • Christopher B Ogden, UT
    Oct. 4, 2013 10:34 a.m.

    This is true, and I've been saying it for years.

    It also explains why Utah is beating byu/usu year after year after year

    The last 4 years, guess who won the head to head AND average star recruiting in the state between Utah, usu, and byU?

    1. Utah
    2. Utah
    3. Utah
    4. Utah

    That's right, even most of the kids that Bronco and Kyle both go after are picking Utah.

    And they say the Pac 12 is a big reason for their picking Utah.

    byu used to get most of the best kids in the state.

    That has CHANGED. Most are picking Utah.

    We dominate recruiting over the in state schools(and this is a big reason we beat them on the field)

    But we still are a little behind in the Pac 12. No, we'll never out recruit USC, UCLA, Oregon.

    But we can out recruit the Arizona schools and few others in the Pac 12.

    Go Utes