Mike Sorensen: Despite disappointing year, Utes aren't that far from contending

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  • Cougsndawgs West Point , UT
    Dec. 6, 2013 5:08 p.m.

    I agree with some of what you said but I think you're trying to paint a rosier picture of Utah's season than is actually the case. I agree that poymans evaluation was pretty generous toward BYU, but yours wasn't far off either. Utah played 4 road games in the PAC 12 this year and lost ALL of them by double digits...and a couple of them could have been worse. Next year Utah plays FIVE road games instead of only four in conference, and their OOC includes a trip to Michigan. It's hard to objectively state that this should give ute fans any optimism. Utah's road woes aren't going away over night, and my guess is that Stanford will get even with the utes in the friendly confines of their house. 4-8 looks like a pretty good estimate, and I doubt Utah gets ANY wins on the road next year, with the possible exception of Colorado.

  • jeru0455 SALEM, OR
    Dec. 6, 2013 11:50 a.m.

    I totally agree with this article. Anyone that watched the Utes play in 2011 and 2013 can CLEARLY tell that this was/is the better team. Our whole offense that year was predicated on giving it to John White IV and running it up the middle. That isn't even close to the case anymore. I would say that our tight ends, when they are healthy are better than our running back core, and Kelvin York and Lucky Radley were at least as good as JW IV. The defense is better too. We aren't giving up 50-60 points a game anymore. We are REALLY close to being a contender. What we need are slightly more experienced receivers, a better secondary, better QB decision making, and to reduce the turnover margin. If this team had a positive turnover margin this year they would be playing for win #10 this holiday season.

  • plyxply SLC, UT
    Dec. 6, 2013 9:46 a.m.

    I'm not a BYU fan, but the Utah fans who have to put pac 12 stickers on everything they own because they are still battling the inferiority complex deserve the bottom of the conference every year. Next years stickers will have a spot to put the utes pac 12 record.

  • Crow Sandy , UT
    Dec. 5, 2013 3:30 p.m.

    @ poyman Only in the "Fantasy World" on the hill can someone say "the utes aren't far away from contending" and do it with a straight face...

    I know you’re a Coug fan and your blue colored glasses are fogging your awareness of what is really taking place up on the hill.
    Utah was in every game that they played in this year, most of the outcome came down to the final play of the game. It was indicative of the scores of each game Utah was right there.
    Utah just does not have the depth that most PAC-12 teams have. Things were progressing really well on the offensive side of the ball until Scott, Wilson, Murphy and Tonga become injured this limited the Utes offensive production. They lost their top WR Kenneth Scott to a broken ankle and with no other burners on the outside it allowed most teams with athleticism to double Dre for most of the game which made the next options Fitzgerald and Denham who could not get any seperation from the DB's.If Wilson, Kenneth, Murphy and Tonga had remained healthy, the Utes win at least three of those close games.

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 5, 2013 12:31 p.m.

    Poyman, I don't know where you get the "best money" argument, but Middle Tennessee would have been a W for Utah and I would have given Utah 2 of your final 3 as victories (most likely Nevada and Georgia Tech).

    Utah would have had roughly the same record as BYU playing that schedule.

    You vastly underestimate how difficult playing in the PAC 12 would be for BYU week in and week out. A 9-3 record is beyond optimism it is bordering on something else. In essence what you are saying at 9-3 is that the Cougs would have been 7-2 against the PAC 12 in one of the strongest years the PAC 12 has ever been (4 top 25 teams and many others hovering near the top 25).

    You are saying that Taysom Hill, who struggled all season when forced to pass, would have beaten Heisman candidates Payton and Hundely, some of the top ranked defenses in the country (ASU, USC, and Arizona), then had the gall to say "maybe" BYU would have lost to Oregon and Stanford?

    My heck, why don't you just grant the Cougs a 12-1 record and BCS buster in your "season of perfection."

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 5, 2013 12:14 p.m.

    Poyman, that is the most optimistic portrayal I think I've ever seen. BYU beating Oregon State (something they couldn't do two years ago), ASU (the speed of ASU would have tested the Cougs and lets not forget, ASU beat Wisconsin), USC at the LA Coliseum (something the Cougs have virtually never done), and UCLA (the recently you refer to is not since Mora has been there but when Neuheisel was coach just before losing his job). Arizona and Washington State would have been no give me's either.

    If you had some logic in your opinion, we might be able to take you seriously. The Cougs are just over .500 against the PAC 12 during the Bronco era and often times that has been in the LV bowl which always meant that PAC team was about 6th place. The other games in recent history against the PAC have not been against Oregon, Stanford, or USC.

  • poyman Lincoln City, OR
    Dec. 5, 2013 3:17 a.m.

    Oh scots... If the schedules would have been reversed the Cougs would have been bowl eligible and the utes would have still failed to qualify for a bowl... They would have finished 5- 7 with wins over Idaho State, maybe Virginia, BYU, Utah State, and maybe Middle Tenessee... They would have gotten clobbered by Texas, Boise State, Wisconsin, Notre Dame all of whom they have never beaten... Plus the best money would also say that they would lose to Houston in Houston and Nevada in Reno, and Georgia Tech at home...

    The Cougs would have beaten Weber State, Utah State, Colorado, Washington State, Arizona, and both Oregon State and Arizona State at home plus probably beaten USC (at the time that Utah played them) and UCLA at home (recently we have owned the Bruins)... The only losses would have come to Utah (a fluke) and maybe Stanford and Oregon... The Cougs would have finished 9-3 and would have probably ended up at the Holiday Bowl or the Alamo Bowl... But if it were to be the Fight Hunger Bowl against the U of W who the utes have never beaten, we would finish the season with 10 wins... and a top 20 rating.

  • Scots Ogden, UT
    Dec. 4, 2013 9:37 p.m.

    Talk about rankings? How about switch the schedules of the 2 schools and see where they would be ranked. Utah 10-2, BYU 3-9. Utah would be looking at a top 25 ranking and BYU would be 50, 60 spots below.

  • poyman Lincoln City, OR
    Dec. 4, 2013 9:17 p.m.


    Wow, that was quite a testimony of ute power and devotion but unfortunately the reality of the actual utes W-L record was not clearly defined... (i.e. the number "1" which represents the number of conference teams that the utes have beaten over 3 years who actually had a winning conference record; or the number "0" which represents the number of bowl games that the utes have gone to the majority of the time that they have been in the conference).

    The ending of the post:

    "In my mind, this season was one of the most enjoyable ever. And I thank the team!" was a choice statement. If you really meant it you are going to be very happy because I suspect the utes will produce many, many, many seasons with similar results to the one they have just completed.

  • poyman Lincoln City, OR
    Dec. 4, 2013 8:48 p.m.

    Only in the "Fantasy World" on the hill can someone say "the utes aren't far away from contending" and do it with a straight face...

    If "not that far away" means 10 years or so then they may be right, but I still doubt it... The majority of the talented recruits in this conference come from California and the utes are not much of a consideration over there (unless you have been passed up by the 4 California schools, the 2 Arizona schools, the 2 Oregon schools, the University of Washington and you are not a Mormon being recruited by the Cougs)... Not only that... The coaching simply isn't that good on the hill.

  • CWEB Orem, UT
    Dec. 4, 2013 5:51 p.m.

    I'm a huge BYU fan. Don't like Utah. Let's be honest. However, had Wilson not been hurt, this year looks quite a bit different for Utah. He was playing fairly well until the injured hand, and bless his heart, I hope he completely recovers from whatever is troubling him, and I hope he surprises everyone and can return to the turf! He is a great competitor, a fun opponent, and though I don't like "most" Ute fans, I have a family member that is one, and I love him anyway! Go Cougs!

  • Y Grad / Y Dad Richland, WA
    Dec. 4, 2013 3:57 p.m.

    Who am I sir?
    Cottonwood Heights, UT

    I salute you sir on a well reasoned and well supported comment that required no degrading of another team to make your point.

    Well stated, and I agree with you. For what it's worth.

  • Crow Sandy , UT
    Dec. 4, 2013 1:16 p.m.

    @ BYU9293

    Utah has beat BYU in the last 4 games and are 8 out of the last 11. By scheduling BYU and Utah St for that matter Utah is already padding their schedule. The Utes are looking to increase their foot print in recruiting. They already play in Utah so why continue to play Utah St. and BYU other than to pad their schedule for two easy win.

    Utah just received commitments from three highly recruited players out of Louisiana and Florida thanks to Dennis Erickson.
    They received a commitment form QB Donovan Isom Destrehan, LA ranked 34 by ESPN also had offer from Miami, Brandon Snell WR, Miami FL Ranked #12 WR by ESPN S Monte Seabrook Newberry, FL ESPN Ranked 92. Utah also got commitments from 2 top 40 OT

  • Riddles in the Dark Olympus Cove, Utah
    Dec. 4, 2013 11:36 a.m.


    Washington and Nebraska were both invited to play #1-ranked BYU in the Holiday Bowl. Unfortunately, neither accepted, or there would be no debate concerning whether or not BYU deserved to be the 1984 National Champion.

    Either BYU would have lost, end of story; or BYU would have won, also, end of story.

    Interestingly, BYU did play Washington at the beginning of the 1985 season, and crushed the Huskies 31-3.

  • Cougsndawgs West Point , UT
    Dec. 4, 2013 9:02 a.m.

    I agree with everything you said...nice to have civilized dialogue. I imagine being at the Big House is a rare treat for a fan of CFB, just as it was for me when I attended the BYU vs ND game last year. Amazing history and prestige surround ND stadium and like the Michigan fans you experienced, ND fans are a classy bunch. Like you I wish CFB could do things the right way because how they do it puts a damper on the accomplishments of ALL programs not just Cinderella or midmajor programs...we can only hope that someday they get it right. A 4 team playoff next year is a step in the right direction, but I'd like to see that grow to 8 or even 16 teams.

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 11:49 p.m.

    CougsandDawgs, I enjoyed attending that 2008 contest against Michigan at the Big House. A truly awesome experience as college football goes. The fans of Michigan were first class all the way. It was an awesome experience. I don't have any illusions about the fact that Michigan wasn't very good that year, but any win in front of 104,000 fans at the Big House is a nice win. the 2008 Wolverines certainly were not better than the Michigan team of 84.

    BYU had a great team in 84 and Michigan was a good team, but they weren't close to the best team BYU could have played. It wasn't BYU's fault, it was a broken college football system that continues to be broken.

    Undefeated Boise State felt cheated when they played TCU in the Fiesta bowl instead of a higher ranked and more prestigious opponent. The system of college football failed BYU and the fans in 1984 and they continue to fail fans with a broken system of awarding a national champion. Washington beat Michigan 20-11 before the injuries to Michigan in 1984 and they ended the season with only one loss. Too bad that wasn't the opponent for the NC that year.

  • New to Utah PAYSON, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 8:51 p.m.

    Utah was very lucky to beat Colorado in the bottom feeders bowl. BYU would have easily beaten Utah if they had played in November like that have for about a 100 years. Money and prestige aren't worth being the punching bag of the Pac 12.BYU did not perform up to expectations they were lucky to beat Reno. Utah State had the easiest MWC schedule not playing SDSU and Fresno, Boise State is probably the best team in the MWC but two heartbreaking loses by one point at Fresno and in overtime at San Diego. This has been craziest year in college football who would think Alabama would lose a fluke play?

  • Cougsndawgs West Point , UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 7:03 p.m.

    It also never ceases to amaze me how good ute fans' memory is about '84 Michigan but how their memory fails them when they consider that a win over a ranked Michigan in 2008 was what propelled Utah into the rankings that year. Michigan finished 3-9 in 2008 and was an awful team from the get go...not even comparable to the talent of the 84 team.

  • Cougsndawgs West Point , UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 6:59 p.m.

    Injuries can play a very important role in how well a team performs over the season. It's one thing to lose starters, it's another thing entirely to lose stars. I'm a Georgia fan and watched them have a lot of success this year, being ranked as high as #6 in the country. Then they lost STAR players like Malcom Mitchell, Todd Gurley, Kieth Marshall, etc. losing your TEs isn't the same as losing guys like that. Georgia went from being one of the best teams in the SEC to losing to Vanderbilt because of STARs getting injured. Every team has injuries, it's when those injuries happen to integral parts that the meltdown occurs. Remember, Wilson threw 6 interceptions against UCLA and was already going downhill BEFORE getting injured.

    Michigan in 84 started as one of the Big 10 favorites and in the NC discussion because of all the talent they had...they then proceeded to lose the majority of their starters and STARS to injury. They started the season with wins over Miami (#1 at the time) and Wisconsin but struggled thereafter. Many of ttheir starters were back for the holiday bowl, but no one ever remember that.

  • I'll call it Ogden, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 6:56 p.m.

    If BYU was in the Pac-12 Utah would never get a win over them again.

  • Scores Idaho Falls, ID
    Dec. 3, 2013 5:24 p.m.

    All time record against Pac 12 teams: 85-138-6 .371
    2011: 4-5 .444
    2012: 3-6 .333
    2013: 2-7 .222

    Utes lost some very close games this year. Nobody can say it will be any better next year. Until they actually show it on the field...winning those close games...don't talk to me about how they are not that far away.

  • Spokane Ute Spokane, WA
    Dec. 3, 2013 5:20 p.m.

    ......nor the final score.

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 5:11 p.m.


    In your words "No one said Michigan was a national power althouth they did say they were before ravaged by injuries."

    We get one sentence into your argument where the contradictions start. Did they or didn't they? My favorite is the injury part. The Cougs allow themselves the injury bug excuse, but not a Utah team who lost its starting QB for all intent and purposes in week 7.

    My favorite Cougar logic..."nobody said any of that."

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 5:03 p.m.

    Fail Duck,

    Go back and read the thread start to finish.

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Dec. 3, 2013 4:28 p.m.

    Here it is folks!!

    "Utah plays a much tougher schedule and BYU plays a much weaker schedule. So you can't compare which team is better by their schedules".

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 4:23 p.m.

    @draperute "fan"

    Fail. No one claimed michigan was a national power, although they did say they were before injuries ravaged their team, no claimed BYU was the "undisputed darling of the national media", no one said utah's "close games are really just an illusion", and no one said BYU losing to utah or notre dame was a "fluke", for that matter no one said that about virginia either.

    You see you have to use things people actually said and no one said any of that whereas utah "fans" do tell us incessantly that the polls are always wrong about BYU being ranked higher than utah but are always right when they use those same rankings to rate utah's SOS. utah "fans" also claim rankings are right when they say utah's recruiting classes are better than BYU's but they are all wrong when they had BYU as the undisputed NCAA College Football National Champion.

    You see we get it, polls and rankings are always correct when they favor utah and they are always wrong when they favor BYU. It is indisputable.

  • Spokane Ute Spokane, WA
    Dec. 3, 2013 4:08 p.m.


    BYU lost to Notre Dame because of the glare coming off of the shinny helmets.

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 3:23 p.m.


    BYU logic:

    6-5 Michigan in 1984 was a national power in their undisputed "national championship game" and Utah playing a 7-4 Pittsburgh was a patsy.

    BYU plays on ESPN2 late at night, so they are the undisputed darling of the national media.

    Utah's "close games" are really just an illusion and in our minds they really lost every game on their schedule.

    Everyone knows BYU losing to Virgina, Utah, and Notre Dame was a fluke. The weather lost the Virginia game, the referees lost the Utah game, and...well I'm sure there is a reason we lost once again to Notre Dame.

  • Spokane Ute Spokane, WA
    Dec. 3, 2013 3:09 p.m.


    The issue I have, is that you make it sound as if the Saragin rankings are the end all, be all, of who is better than whom. Utah is ranked #33, WSU #34 and OSU #36. All very close. So was Utah better than both WSU & OSU? Of course not, they lost to them. I can admit that. You act as if Utah is like Virginia and ranked #114 or something. Sorry, but when teams are ranked very close to each other, the actual game played is the tie breaker. IMO

    In my mind, it's pretty weak sauce when you have to rely on some poll to tell you that your team is better. BYU lost to Utah, out played, and out scored. That's the bottom line.

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 1:20 p.m.

    An explanation of utah "fan" logic as it pertains to this discussion.

    Rankings only matter when they are used to determine SOS because in that instance it says utah plays the nations hardest schedule and having to play the nations hardest schedule gives utah "fans" an excuse for their teams incredibly poor record.

    Rankings not only don't matter, but are actually fatally flawed, when they show BYU to be a better team than utah.

    It is simple to understand, those that vote on the rankings don't have a clue what they are doing when they rank BYU above utah but they are spot on and flawless when using those rankings to give utah "fans" their whiney excuse about their schedule being to hard.

    There you go, utah "fan" logic explained. LOL!

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 1:18 p.m.

    Tators, you were the one who "guaranteed" Kyle would take Bronco's schedule, I did not put words in your mouth. You wrote it.

    I said I think Kyle likes the challenge, I didn't guarantee it, though I have heard him say in interviews he likes the challenge of building a program that can contend in the PAC 12. As I said, Kyle could get a job before Chris Hill even finished saying "you're done" if it came to that, so his concerns are primarily focused on helping improve a program he has spent so many years building. He wants the program to succeed because Kyle takes pride in building something, unlike Urban who just used Utah as another career stepping stone.

    I also didn't say he doesn't have concerns for his job, I said you overstated those concerns. Of course he is concerned as he should be. I'm not sure even Kyle knew how hard this transition would be.

    BYU was still 2-4 against BCS teams, including Virginia and Utah. All I'm saying is why come on a Utah thread and pound your chests with those results?

  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 1:09 p.m.

    @ Elmer Fudd:

    Don't be silly enough to count on Utah beating BYU every year. Yes, they've beat them the past 4 years (3 down to the last play of the game), but BYU also beat Utah 3 of the preceding 4 years prior to then.

    The only thing a knowledgeable fan will count on is that the rivalry between the 2 schools will continue to go back and forth... like it has done for most of a century. Only someone living in a bubble world would think otherwise.

    If Utah beating BYU makes them the better team, then why do all the national polls currently have BYU listed and ranked as the better team? Those people who create the polls know the results of that single game, but still feel BYU is the better team. Oh... that's right, the rest of the football world looks at the entire season... unlike just a few Ute fans who think that a single game counts for everything... and that it's impossible for teams to get better or decline during the coarse of a season.
    Please don't be that naive!

    Does that also mean Utah is a better team than Stanford?


  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 12:35 p.m.

    @ DraperUteFan:

    First of all, I have never once said that Kyle was not a good coach. I've always liked Kyle and was disappointed when he chose to not coach at BYU.

    But are you really naive enough to think Kyle doesn't currently have any concerns for his job? And why wouldn't he... after contending for the basement of the PAC12 each year Utah has been in it... and/or having ended each of the last 3 seasons with consecutively worse conference records.... and/or not qualified for any bowl games for the last 2 years and counting?

    Apparently, you don't spend time reading the comments of anyone except BYU fans. If you had, you'd know that many Ute fans have made comments about Kyle needing to be concerned for his job and guessing when he will be let go.

    Kyle has never once said (or even insinuated) that he currently "loves the challenge" of his situation. That's just you once again putting words in other people's mouths... like you often do with BYU fans.

    To be honest, Kyle looks and sounds quite concerned in most of his recent post-game interviews... as should he.

  • PAC man Anaheim, CA
    Dec. 3, 2013 12:12 p.m.


    There has been significant controversy surrounding many major college football national champion selections.

    What can't be denied is the national cachet BYU built during the five preceding seasons leading up to BYU's national championship season that had already established BYU's credibility - four Top 12 finishes, including finishing #7/#7 in both polls in 1983, including road wins against two Top 15 teams.

    1979 - 11-1, #13/#12 - a missed chip-shot FG against WSU cost BYU an undefeated season
    1980 - 12-1, #12/#12
    1981 - 11-2, #13/#11
    1982 - 8-4
    1983 - 11-1, #7/#7
    1984 - 13-0, #1/#1
    1985 - 11-3, #16/#17

    BYU finished the 1984 season on a 24-game winning streak and did beat Air Force(8-4), on the road, a team that finished #24 in the final AP poll, unranked only because the AP rankings only included the Top 20 in 1984.

  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 12:10 p.m.

    @ DraperUteFan:

    One other thing you forgot or chose to not mention...

    Bronco's "soft schedule" as you call it, is considered harder (strength of schedule rankings) than 8 of the top 10 teams in the latest polls. How do you explain that?

    And that same "soft schedule" is rated more difficult than any schedule Utah has every played prior to this year... ever. So what would that say for all of Utah's previous schedules? Is there anything softer than ultra-soft?

    As far as next year goes, there's a reason no one has yet assigned a strength of schedule to next year's schedules. No one yet knows who will be next years national contenders. You can guess all you want, but no one yet knows. Auburn was downright lousy last year, but this year is still a contender for National Champion... having just beaten Alabama, the previous #1 team.

    Though not likely, it's still possible BYU could have a higher SOS than Utah next season. No one yet knows. So why waste your time criticizing next year's schedule for anyone? Are you already making excuses in advance for the season Utah has yet to play?

  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 11:56 a.m.

    @ DraperUteFan:

    Despite all your cherry picking, BYU criticizing, and continually putting words in other people's mouths, neither you or any other Ute fan has yet to explain why all the college football coaches (Coaches Poll), all the national press writers (AP Poll) and every single national ranking service (Sagarin) still have BYU ranked higher (better) than Utah, and have done so for most of the season.

    One big reason is because everyone besides ultra-Ute fans look at the entire season and don't overly emphasize just a single game or two. When people do (yourself included), that's called cherry picking... something you and a few other Utes have taken to an art form. You continually talk about BYU's first game of the season, but never once give them any credit for winning 5 games in a row which included some previously unbeaten teams... even while on the road. When did Utah last win 5 games in a row?

    Everyone in the college football world understands the Virginia game was an upset. Everyone except ultra-biased Ute fans.

    PLEASE EXPLAIN why the entire football world, to this very day, still rates and ranks BYU better than Utah.

  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 11:31 a.m.

    @ DraperUteFan:

    There you go again... cherry picking your info. Your arguments are starting to seem quite silly.

    Since Kyle complains about his tough schedule after every one of his conference losses, it's an easy assumption that he would love to have an easier schedule (i.e., Bronco's next year's schedule)... especially since many fans have been calling for his job. Your denial is almost comical.

    BYU may've gone 2-4 against BCS teams this year. But Utah went 2-6. Most people would consider that doing worse. They even lost at home to a team that lost to a division II college team. What's your funny spin on that? You acknowledge upsets when they happen to Utah, but not to anyone else. If you are even halfway objective, you would openly admit the Virginia game was an upset. ESPN and the rest of the world recognizes that. But no way will a Ute troll.

    Perhaps another reason Utah is ranked lower than BYU in literally every single national poll.

    BTW: Since you continue putting words in my mouth, find one single place where I "ripped the Utes for being close in games'. You can't because I didn't.

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 10:58 a.m.

    Tators, I'm glad you have coach Whit on speed dial to make guarantees you have no valid reason to make.

    Bronco might like the his schedule because it is a soft road to go bowling, but that safe route will never put BYU back on the "national limelight" Cougar fans like to think of themselves on.

    I couldn't disagree with you more with your coach Whit analysis. The Utes may tank in a year and they may have years where they overcome a very difficult schedule and achieve greatness.

    Kyle would have a job offer in 5 minutes as a head coach or D coordinator if he were let go at Utah, so you overstate his concern about playing a tougher schedule and his potential job loss. Quite the contrary, I think he loves the challenge.

    Simple question Tators, what was the Cougs record this year against teams with BCS affiliation? By my count, 2-4. Ironic how you and your fellow Cougs rip the Utes for "being close" in games, but you lost to a team who lost 8 straight in their season and try to put a silver lining on it.

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 10:38 a.m.

    Worf, the Utes are already swimming in the PAC 12 lake (an odd metaphor, but whatever), and improved as evidenced by a win over Stanford. Think about it Worf, if Utah had not beaten Stanford they would be top 4 in the BCS and at least in the discussion for the NC.

    Most Ute fans I know are not bragging, knowing the recent Ute squad and fan base have nothing to brag about except 4 in a row against BYU. Every post I've seen from rational Ute fans on this board are clear that we aren't happy with the results in the PAC 12 and certainly aren't bragging about the record and losses.

    As for the ostensible "whining" going on, I see people posting that the competition is tougher, which I don't consider whining. Just a fact of life, and most of us are just fine with that.

    What is the Cougs excuse for going 2-4 against teams with BCS affiliation? Is it because the competition was just too good or the Cougs were just that awful? Which is it?

  • 1978 Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 10:29 a.m.

    Come on Uteanymous, National Rankings are absolutely meaningless to Utah fans. Unless they are ranked higher of course.

  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 10:25 a.m.

    @ Spokane ute:

    You've usually more objective than most other ultra-Ute fans. So I believe you already know that BYU can beat Virginia. They outplayed them, but lost on the scoreboard because of one dumb coaching decision. You and other honest Ute fans already know BYU would beat this year's Virginia 9 out of 10 times. Saying otherwise made it seem to only be grasping at straws. And considering the year Utah had, that's totally understandable.

    That's like saying Utah couldn't beat Colorado after Colorado beat them 2 years ago with just a 1-win team. Everyone knows what an upset is, (which that was) but still tries to use them against others in their arguments. That always smacks of desperation.

    BTW: When was the last time Utah ever beat Virginia?

    @ Uteology:

    Say what you will about BYU's schedule next year. But I absolutely guarantee you (not a Chris B type of guarantee) that Kyle would trade Bronco schedules next year in a heartbeat if given the chance. It might be the only way to save his job.

    Besides that, some of those teams might be national contenders next year. You (we) have no way of knowing.

  • U 90 Corona, CA
    Dec. 3, 2013 10:25 a.m.

    Steven Jarvis,

    Per Sagarin SOS through 12/1.... Utah #1, BYU #32. Sagarin is the most recognized source for SOS. Google it.

    You seem to be a BYU research buff. I can't get any Y fans to answer this honest question. Has BYU ever beat 2 teams in the same year that finished the season ranked in the top 25?

    On two separate occasions Utah has beat 4 ranked teams in the same season (1994 and 2008)

  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 10:05 a.m.

    @ DraperUteFan:

    As with a few other semi-possessed Ute fans, you seem to read what you want to and not what was written. In so doing, you put words in the mouths of BYU fans, just to make your rhetoric seem more plausible... though it still isn't.

    I did NOT say that BYU played more big name teams this year than Utah did this year. Go back and re-read. And if you're even semi-honest, you'll do another "oops!"

    I said BYU played more big name schools this year than Utah did during their BCS years. Not such a hard concept to understand. At least for most people. And since Utah has never had a strength of schedule BEFORE this year that was as tough as BYU had this year, that fact speaks for itself. And it also undermines the rest of your silly contentions.

    Next time, try reading comments with your eyes open. It helps greatly in understanding others and will cut down some of your obvious feelings of desperation.

  • jazzer St. George, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 9:59 a.m.

    As a BYU fan, I am very jealous of the U's Pac 12 membership. We would take it if we got offered it. I think we would be doing worse then them at this point. I don't want to hear it that "we have more pac 12 wins then Utah". I think BYU is improving and we are going to continue to get better but Utah has our number.

  • Spokane Ute Spokane, WA
    Dec. 3, 2013 9:39 a.m.

    Come on Elmer, score board is absolutely meaningless to BYU fans. Unless the win of course.

  • Elmer Fudd Sandy, Utah
    Dec. 3, 2013 8:49 a.m.

    @ Uteanymous

    The only way you can have a true comparison on which team is better is if Utah and BYU played the exact same schedule. Then you can make an argument. Unfortunately for you they both play completely different schedules. Utah plays a much tougher schedule and BYU plays a much weaker schedule. So you can't compare which team is better by their schedules.

    So if you really want to compare who is better, then you have to look for a common opponent between the two teams and that is each other. Utah beat BYU this year which means Utah is the better team.


  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Dec. 3, 2013 8:20 a.m.

    I knew a couple years ago, the utes wouldn't swim in the PAC 12 lake. Fans would brag on how they're such a good football team,--but I knew they would be whining from playing a harder schedule while still claiming to be superior. Have the utes found success in any sport?

    Dec. 3, 2013 8:19 a.m.

    "Mike Sorensen: Despite disappointing year, Utes aren't that far from contending"

    They're going to need to be able to stay healthy and play better on the road. They have a good home field advantage as evidenced by a win over Stanford (and a should have won against Arizona St.) but, cannot play on the road. Wilson is a good QB and with some better luck in the health department can take them somewhere.

    Chris B., it is really cute when you say "we."

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 11:17 p.m.

    ND95CA and Killarney, you like so many Cougar fans are so sensitive about the national championship. BYU was chosen the consensus NC, but for you to deny that there was significant controversy at the time is to bury your head in the sand and deny reality.

    Bryant Gumbel was the most outspoken and some would say obnoxious critic of the Cougar NC, but he was giving voice to what many others thought. Bottom line is a 6-5 team going into the Holiday Bowl was not the best test for BYU to prove it was the undisputed national champion. How ironic that BYU loves to crack on Utah for playing a 7-4 Pitt team in the Fiesta bowl.

    Those were great BYU teams back then, no disputing that.I'm just saying the NC would have been given considerably more legitimacy had they played the very best that year. Michigan clearly was not the very best, thus BYU is often cited as one of the most disputed college football championships ever...Google it.

  • Uteanymous Salt Lake City, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 11:08 p.m.

    Elmer Fudd

    You can also count on Utah finishing with a worse record and lower ranking than BYU every year.

    Winning where it matters most, in the final rankings!

  • Uteanymous Salt Lake City, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 11:03 p.m.


    "Utah was 33-6 the last three years in the MWC (All loses to AP top 25 teams)
    Utah is 8-1 vs mid-majors since then (loss to a top AP 25 team)"

    More cherry picking?

    The Utes have only beaten ONE PAC team with a winning record in 27 games.

    And calling Montana State, Northern Colorado, and Weber State "mid majors" simply demonstrates your desperate attempt to claim some sort of respectability.

    Sagarin carefully evaluated BYU's and Utah's records and SOS, and here are his conclusions:

    2011 #34 BYU(10-3) > #39 Utah(8-5)
    2012 #26 BYU(8-5) > #61 Utah(5-7)
    2013 #28 BYU(8-4) > #33 Utah(5-7)

    Sagarin's rankings are generous to Utah compared to other rankings this year:

    BCS - #39 BYU > #56 Utah
    CBS Sports - #38 BYU > #67 Utah
    USA Today - #34 BYU > #76 Utah

    Across the board in every ranking BYU > Utah

    Sorry to burst your crimson bubble, but you're not nearly as good as you think you are.

  • killarney Lincoln Park, IL
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:31 p.m.


    "...you have a real head scratcher on your hands with "Nebraska and Washington tried to work the established precedent by beating a lower ranked team..." Oklahoma was ranked #2 they played Washington in the at the time. Is that your idea of a "lower ranked team?"

    It's you who doesn't seem to understand that playing the #2-ranked team, instead of the #1-ranked team, is playing a LOWER ranked team.

  • ND95CA Lincoln Park, IL
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:25 p.m.


    I remember history just fine, in fact, I was at the Holiday Bowl when BYU beat Michigan to win their 24th straight game.

    Despite your biased hyperbole, every media expert and major college coach saw exactly the same things BYU haters like you pretend that only you are privy too, yet after carefully evaluating every contender for over a month, BYU was chosen consensus national champion by all five major selecting organizations.

    The eyes of the entire college football nation were on the Holiday Bowl to see if #1-ranked BYU would stumble versus a Michigan team that earlier in the season had themselves been a national championship contender until a rash of injuries sent them on a losing skid. By the time the Holiday Bowl rolled around, most of Michigan's lost starters were back and healthy.

    The Wolverine team that you so foolishly demean would have played in the Rose Bowl if they had beaten their arch rival Ohio State in their final regular season game.

    If you want to blame someone for BYU not having a more "worthy" opponent, blame Nebraska and Washington who both turned down invitations to play BYU in the Holiday Bowl.

  • Elmer Fudd Sandy, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:06 p.m.

    @ worf

    You can count on Utah beating BYU every year!


  • Jake2010 bountiful, ut
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:05 p.m.

    Sure, it may help playing PAC12 teams only 1-2 times versus 9 times. It isn't frequency played but frequency successful that still matters.

    Playing on ESPN isn't necessarily a big stage... Just because 'we' are on ESPN every single week with very few exceptions doesn't mean that the games are necessarily any more watched than those on PAC-12... What Cougar fans can not take away from Utah is that they have to play the cream of the crop of their division or the conference every season. That definitely takes a toll... Perhaps Chris Hill could talk to his fellow conference associated AD's into scheduling BYU for 12 straight weeks... Then it could be apples to apples rather than apples to oranges. How soon that could happen is not 'very'... Too many future schedules are already breached. By the time it could be done the relevance of 'today' would be yesterday's dream. Whereas for today it is simply a nice pipe dream.

  • Elmer Fudd Sandy, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:02 p.m.

    @ killarney

    "You're ignoring the fact that Utah lost to the Broncos in 1998, 1999, 2006 and 2010.

    The Broncos were only 6-5 in 1998 and the 10-3 1999 Broncos lost to North Texas!"

    Reread what I wrote because you totally misinterpreted it!

    I said "Hardly anyone in college football could beat Boise State the last two times Utah played the Broncos"

    The last two times Utah played Boise State was in 2006 and 2010. Hardly any team in college football could beat Boise State between 2006-2010 when Utah played them. In 2006 Boise State was 13-0 and Fiesta Bowl champions and ranked #5. In 2010 Boise State was 12-1 losing only to Nevada and ranked #7. Both those seasons Boise State pulled off big upsets during their season.

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:56 p.m.

    @Elmer Fudd--Utah can't qualify for bowl games anymore.

  • regis Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:57 p.m.

    Who would possibly suggest that Utah's jump to the PAC 12 was a mistake? Only a complete idiot would advocate moving back to the MWC. Utah - and any other non-BCS school - would make the same move under the same circumstances again. Utah's football and basketball programs are moving forward. Recruiting has made major leaps forward. Upgrades to athletic facilities are first class. Utah is heading in the right direction. Anyone who suggests that Utah's jump to the PAC 12 was a mistake is a fool.

  • WestGranger West Valley City, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:54 p.m.

    The Utes need a good stable quarterback in order to contend. BYU turned its offense around quickly with a good QB and the Utes can do the same. It is a game of inches.

  • regis Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:45 p.m.

    Excellent commentary, Mr. Sorensen.

  • let's roll LEHI, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:16 p.m.

    Wow...I'm going to do something completely unique to this thread: comment on the topic of the article rather than compare the U and the Y.

    Challenges to Utah's success in the PAC-12
    1. USC--There was a window of opportunity while their scholarships were limited but with them going back to full scholarships and Sark going there to coach, they'll again be dominant in Utah's division.
    2. Top end recruiting--Utah continues to have their average creep up (a good thing) but the top end teams are still getting 10 4/5 star recruits for every one the Utes get.
    3. Not being overlooked. I'm hopeful that Utah will approach .500 in the conference in the next couple of years. As they win more games, teams will stop looking past them. I don't think a single PAC-12 opponent thought they played one of their best games against Utah.

    1. Head coaching stability--It's a differentiater that should help recruiting
    2. Defense--Great scheme, great coaching. Keeps the Utes in most games. As the athletes improve (especially in the secondary)it will get even better. Need to develop an identity on offense.

    Good luck to the Utes.

  • Jake2010 bountiful, ut
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:12 p.m.

    "Contending" isn't in itself a 'good' thing... Lots of contenders continuously find a way to lose... There were no blow out losses for BYU this year... 10 or less points was the dagger each and every time. Arizona, WSU, USC and Oregon spoiled that from being a possibility for the Utes. Go ahead... 19-16, 20-13, 27-17, 23-13. 4 losses... Not ONE was over 10 points. I guess that means BYU is a contender too... That is where I'm nipping this line of thinking right in the bud before it makes people overly comfortable with mediocrity. A play here or there being different doesn't make a team 'great'... Because with all the narrow wins by both programs those same plays going the opponents way would have resulted in just one more loss... Oddly enough Utah's wins outside of Weber State were all 7 points or less... That isn't contention... That is squeaking... competition level is not a metric of justification for futility. Anyone who uses it as such is simply in crass denial.

  • Clark W. Griswold Sandy, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 8:50 p.m.

    @ killarney

    "U can have Virginia (which, incidentally, Utah has never beaten).

    BYU will take Texas, Boise State, and Houston (which, incidentally, Utah has also never beaten)"

    Two can play that game! BYU has never beaten Alabama and Utah has never lost to them.

    Utah will gladly take teams like USC and Stanford (which incidentally, BYU has also never beaten). Utah leads the all time series with Stanford 3-2.

    Utah has beaten Boise State before. They have beaten them twice! Boise State leads the all time series 5-2. You might want to check your facts before you lose all credibility.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 8:43 p.m.


    Only at BYU does a season ending LEG injury affect the passing game. By week two against Texas Hill ran for 250 yards and was a top 6 rusher but the worst passing QB in the nation.

    FACT: 62% of the total wins were against losing teams

    @killarney: "Utah could easily finish with no better than a 6-6 record versus BYU's 2014 schedule"

    Keep day dreaming because reality isn't where you spend most of your time.

    * Utah was 33-6 the last three years in the MWC (All loses to AP top 25 teams)
    * Utah is 8-1 vs mid-majors since then (loss to a top AP 25 team)

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 8:19 p.m.

    My bad, it was a 9-2 Oklahoma team that Washington beat in the 1984 Orange Bowl. Kilarney, you have a real head scratcher on your hands with "Nebraska and Washington tried to work the established precedent by beating a lower ranked team..." Oklahoma was ranked #2 they played Washington in the at the time. Is that your idea of a "lower ranked team?"

    Bowl alignments were even more fixed than they are now and affiliated by conference almost exclusively. BYU had no choice but to play in the Holiday Bowl, a bowl they were contracted to play in as the WAC champ. The Big 8 champ was slated for the Orange Bowl. There was no way the two could meet to decide a true national champion.

    To my knowledge, 6-5 Michigan was not ranked at all, so it is not as if BYU "played up" to win, and it took a furious 4th quarter rally to beat the Wolverines.

    Perhaps you can expound on your "established precedent" theory?

  • sammyg Springville, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 8:19 p.m.

    "Are byu fans pleased that byu never had the opportunity to play on the big stage?"

    BYU's already played on a biggest stage for an NC so this question is senseless.

    So in kind I'll follow it up with one of my own...

    PAC12 stickers anyone?

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 7:39 p.m.

    Kilarney, not sure of your age, but I think you were either not alive when the 1984 game happened or just don't know the history of college football.

    BYU played in the Holiday Bowl and nobody declared it the "national championship game" as no such thing existed then. The media decided the champion, which was why there were so many disputed champions even now through the flawed BCS system.

    BYU defeated the worst 6-6 Michigan team in decades. Washington defeated Nebraska in the Orange Bowl, two teams generally thought to be much better than BYU. By your logic and every other Cougar's logic, the Utes at 13-0 in 2008 were the only undefeated team, and therefore the only team deserving of a National Championship, but no, BYU uses its logic exclusively on BYU.

    BYU logic is a "peculiar" thing. Selectively applied, limited in its scope to the Cougars. The 1984 Holiday Bowl was a second tier bowl only and not one person at that time thought of it as "the national championship game." I guess you had to be alive then to remember what it was like.

  • Steven S Jarvis Orem, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 7:18 p.m.


    Utah has not played the most difficult schedule for 2013 because SOS is evaluated after games have been played. Utah played Colorado and the SOS in conference fell behind a few teams with that addition. I looked at several sites for the SOS metric and none of them has Utah at the top of the nation for difficulty. Congrove has the Utes fourth behind Stanford, Oklahoma and Cal. Arizona State should leapfrog the Utes this week since they play Stanford and are in fifth. BYU played the 22nd most difficult schedule. While you mock MTS, they ranked around thirty places higher than the Utes in the mid-fifties, and will once again be bowling. I admit I was disappointed that MTS wasn't able to muster nine or ten wins like they typically do. Even in a DOWN year they still got to 8 and went bowling.

    Another site had Utah falling from 2nd to 17th with the game against Colorado. The Utes end of year strength will get passed up by a few teams that are bowling, but they should still be able to boast the went 5-7 against a top ten schedule.

  • Canyontreker TAYLORSVILLE, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 7:14 p.m.

    Tators "I'm glad Utah beat Colorado to keep from finishing in the very bottom of the conference basement."

    Colorado is not the basement of the conference. They beat Cal 41-24.

    Just thought you should know what you don't know.

  • SoonerUte Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 7:00 p.m.

    jpjazz predicted that the Utes would dominate the in state recruiting wars -- and then seemingly talked himself out of it. How can Utah compete in in-state recruiting?

    BYU has a national brand, but their recruiting rankings have actually dropped since going independent. Utah competes here by putting kids into the NFL. BYU will talk about Ziggy Ansah, but recruits are smart and know that he wasn't recruited. Ziggy's success is natural talent. Keep in mind that a recruit in high school today grew up watching Utah win 9 of the last 12 rivalry games. Kids go with a winner.

    USU is going to take away Utah recruits? I'm not following you on that. If a kid is told he is good enough to play against PAC12 talent, why would he instead choose to play in Cheyenne and Fort Collins in winter?

    Recruiting against the PAC12 schools will always be tough. Here again Utah competes by putting kids into the NFL but also... play time. Kids want to play. Sit on the bench at UCLA or most likely start at Utah, be seen by scouts, and get a shot at the next level?

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 6:56 p.m.

    MidPac, you miss the point as have virtually every other Coug fans. Conservation Bias, the tendency to see only your point of view, is something we are all guilty of, but cmon man!

    Auburn won the NC when Cam Newton was there with a 14-0 record, but the following year they went 8-5 and nearly lost to Utah State. Not too shabby, but barely good enough for 4th in the SEC East.

    You judge a team by past reputation, not their results that year. You ignore the results of those "big name" teams this year. I don't. You see what you want to see. Texas got blasted by Oklahoma State, Mississippi State, and BYU this year. They have yet to play Baylor and skated by much of a Big 12 that every pundit in the land acknowledges is weaker than most years. Those other teams are simply not as dominant THIS YEAR as you think their "big name" reputation suggests. The combined record of the teams you listed is 32-15.

    BTW, you were 1-3 in those games...did you know?

  • killarney Lincoln Park, IL
    Dec. 2, 2013 6:33 p.m.


    It's common knowledge that to win a national championship, you have to be ranked #1 in the final polls.

    BYU was ranked #1 in both polls for almost a month prior to the bowls, so BYU's bowl game was in fact the national championship game.

    Nebraska and Washington both tried to work the established precedent by beating a lower-ranked team in another bowl and hoping that the voters would overlook the fact that the #1-ranked team was still undefeated.

    All five major national selecting organizations still selected BYU as the 1984 National Champions.

    Like it or not, the 1984 Holiday Bowl was the National Championship game.

  • killarney Lincoln Park, IL
    Dec. 2, 2013 6:23 p.m.

    Elmer Fudd

    "Hardly anyone in college football could beat Boise State the last two times Utah played the Broncos."

    You're ignoring the fact that Utah lost to the Broncos in 1998, 1999, 2006 and 2010.

    The Broncos were only 6-5 in 1998 and the 10-3 1999 Broncos lost to North Texas!

  • SoonerUte Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 6:20 p.m.

    "BYU has already played ... a national championship game" -- Rockwell.
    BYU should be proud of their Heisman and National Championship trophies. Those are great accomplishments that stand are their own. There is no need to flat out lie about them.

    BYU didn't play in a national championship game. They played an unranked team in the Holiday Bowl. National championship games didn't begin until over a decade later. BYU's experience was nothing compared to the pressure and intensity of today's championship games between the top two teams.

  • killarney Lincoln Park, IL
    Dec. 2, 2013 6:13 p.m.

    Spokane Ute

    U can have Virginia (which, incidentally, Utah has never beaten).

    BYU will take Texas, Boise State, and Houston (which, incidentally, Utah has also never beaten).

  • killarney Lincoln Park, IL
    Dec. 2, 2013 6:05 p.m.


    Utah could easily finish with no better than a 6-6 record versus BYU's 2014 schedule

    @UConn - win
    @Texas - loss
    Virginia - win
    Houston - loss (Utah has never beaten Houston)
    Utah St - toss up
    @UCF - loss
    Nevada - win
    @Boise St - loss (Utah has never beaten Boise St)
    @Middle Tenn - toss up
    UNLV - win
    Savannah State - win
    @Cal - win (assuming the Bears are as bad as this year, otherwise loss, remember 2011)



    Pretty comical that the Utes are "celebrating" another 5-7, bowl-less season because they managed to pull off a bunch of close losses against a tough schedule.

    BYU's 8-4 record is good for 39th in the current BCS standings.
    Utah's 5-7 record is good for 56th in the current BCS standings.

    While BYU finished in the top 3rd, Utah barely finished in the top half of the BCS standings.

    If finishing between La.-Lafayette and Toledo floats your boat, feel free to continue beating your chest about achieving such a lofty "accomplishment".

  • U 90 Corona, CA
    Dec. 2, 2013 5:37 p.m.

    Has BYU ever beaten two teams in the same season that finished the year in the top 25?

    I don't know the answer but there's gotta be a Y fan who does. Please enlighten

  • U 90 Corona, CA
    Dec. 2, 2013 5:32 p.m.


    what does Boise State have to do with your original argument that BYU would win more games in the PAC12 than Utah IF the cougs had been invited?

  • Elmer Fudd Sandy, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 5:24 p.m.

    @ worf

    "and Utah can't beat Boise State"

    Hardly anyone in college football could beat Boise State the last two times Utah played the Broncos. They were a well oiled machine that just wins in dominating fashion. Ever since Kellen Moore and that strong senior class graduated. Boise State has become mediocre! BYU has scheduled them while they are down. That seems to be the only way BYU ever beats reputable teams.

    BYU can't beat Utah anymore!

  • Spokane Ute Spokane, WA
    Dec. 2, 2013 5:00 p.m.

    @Worf--and BYU can't beat Virginia.


  • midpacmajor Salt Lake City, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 4:40 p.m.


    Anybody who claims that Texas, Notre Dame, Wisconsin, and Georgia Tech aren't all big name programs is simply blowing smoke. Throw in Utah State (which beat Utah last year and barely lost to Utah this year), along with Boise St and Houston (two teams Utah has never beaten), and BYU still played a schedule that Utah would have been hard-pressed to do any better against than the did with their own schedule.

    BYU's #32 SOS was tougher than ANY schedule Utah has ever played, prior to this season.

    Stop whining about schedule when you finished with the exact same 5-7 record last season with a #41 SOS.

  • Uteanymous Salt Lake City, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 4:27 p.m.


    Nobody knows how good teams are going to be from year to year. Last year, Auburn was abysmal (0-8, 3-9). This year, Auburn is a national championship contender.

    With that said, when was the last time Utah played and beat 7 bowl teams that finished with at least 7 regular season wins in the same season?

    BYU's 2014 Schedule with 2013 records
    at UConn 2-9
    at Texas 8-3 (Texas could still win the Big 12)
    Virginia 2-10
    Houston 8-4
    Utah St 8-4 (Utah St could still win the MWC)
    at Ctrl Fla 10-1
    Nevada 4-8
    at Boise St 8-4
    at Mid Tenn St 8-4
    UNLV 7-5
    Savannah St 1-11
    at California 1-11

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Dec. 2, 2013 4:16 p.m.

    @U 90--and Utah can't beat Boise State

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 4:14 p.m.

    BTW Tators, the IF in "If we win enough games...we would then go to a BCS bowl game" has yet to happen. The only IF scenario for BYU to be considered for a BCS game is to go undefeated and hope the system has an opening in a down year.

    IF the Cougars had gone undefeated this season with their schedule, they are still looking at pretty bleak prospects because of the way the BCS factors in SOS. You would have a tough time beating out any of the top 10 BCS teams.

    This year may have been the Cougars best IF opportunity because it was their best independent schedule to date, but they pretty much blew it the first weekend of play.

    Pretty comical that the Cougs are celebrating a Ute "cellar" and "dormat" 5-7 season when their 3 more wins are not substantially better and nothing to get too excited about. 3 more wins Cougs and you are chest pounding? Give me Nevada, Middle Tennessee, (I'll give you the straight up exchange of Weber State for your Idaho State), then give me Virginia. I'll mark down three more wins right there, and Utah's schedule would still trump BYU.

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Dec. 2, 2013 4:13 p.m.

    @MyPerspective--that's why I put IMO, and it makes sense.

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 3:57 p.m.

    I love it when Tators declares "BYU played more big name teams this year than Utah..." Can you name one commentator or national source for such a conclusion?

    Let's see, Virginia...8 straight losses. Texas...best team the Cougars played and actually beat (the Longhorns 2nd toughest conference game remains). Whenever a team plays a school with Northern, Middle, Eastern, Western, or anything else like that in front of their name, justified skepticism from objective fans...aka Middle Tennessee. Average Georgia Tech team, good but unranked Utah State, Houston we have a problem with 4 losses in a 6 game stretch. A good but not great Badger team, the Mighty Pocatelloans, a below average Notre Dame, and a near upset by the 4-8 Wolfpack.

    Just because you played them doesn't validate the schedule, as BYU fans less than subtly point out about Utah. Your signature win is Texas and it was a convincing win. Too bad BYU didn't have a statement win the rest of the season (and please don't claim Boise State). Texas only remains in the top 25.

    The Utes played 4 teams still in the top 25. Stanford, Oregon, USC, UCLA, & Arizona State trump that "big name" schedule.

  • Uteanymous Salt Lake City, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 3:51 p.m.


    Same old, same old with Kyle - he does well when he only has to get his team up for one or two games a season.

    Over the course of an entire season, however, the record speaks for itself; except one perfect storm season, Kyle is mediocre, at best.

    Bronco/Kyle era

    AP Top 25 Finishes
    Bronco 4
    Kyle 2

    11+ win, Top 15 Finishes
    Bronco 3
    Kyle 1

    10+ Win Seasons
    Bronco 5
    Kyle 3

    Conference Championships
    Bronco 2
    Kyle 1

    Kyle lost to every bottom dweller in the MWC; Bronco was undefeated against the likes of Wyoming, New Mexico, Colorado State, and UNLV.

    Bronco may have lost a season-opening game in a driving rainstorm with a QB coming off a season-ending injury after only starting two games as a Freshman, but, with the PAC South title there for the taking, Bronco would not have lost a season-ending game, at home, to a 10-loss team that hadn't won a road game in 3 years.

    BYU won 23 WAC/MWC titles; Utah only won 6.

    Surviving the weekly grind of a conference season is simply something the Utes don't do.

  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 3:46 p.m.

    @ Bleed Crimson:

    You lost tons of credibility by asserting BYU's independence has been a disaster for them, when just the opposite is factually true.

    It's true that Utah might be over their heads by no longer being able to qualify for any bowl games and having to fight so hard just to stay out of the very bottom of the PAC12 basement. I wished that wasn't true. But it's a fact.

    BYU on the other hand, are still finishing their seasons more often nationally ranked than not. They are playing more nationally televised games than ever before. They have played in bowl games every single year Bronco has been head coach... 8 and counting. They are making multiple times more money than they ever did before with any conference affiliation.

    And they did so with a SOS in the top 20% of all college teams. In fact, it was stronger this year than any schedule Utah has ever played... prior to this year.

    On top of that BYU has much more choice over who they play than any conference team has. That's a very good thing. Ask any head coach.

    You have a right to be jealous.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 3:43 p.m.

    @Tators: "As such, BYU definitely has a bigger "stage" than Utah. BYU played more big-name teams this year than Utah or Boise State ever did when they played in BCS bowl games."

    Big-name teams means diddly.

    Utah won more big games (ranked teams) in 2008 than BYU has since 1997 or when they backed into a National Title.

    BYU has such a control over their schedule that this is what they came up with for next year?

    Virginia (let’s hope it doesn’t rain)
    Utah State
    @UCF (Ranked)
    @Middle Tenn
    Savannah State

    I count 9 wins already.
    This is a plus?
    You might as well claim you are the better team with 9 wins without even playing a down.

  • MyPerspective Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 3:30 p.m.

    deductive reasoning

    Without exception, each of you has weighed in on this well written article (which presents a to hope for a bright future for Utah football). Without exception, each one of you (and others like you) has commented on the Utes coming up short thus far in the elite and intensely competitive Pac-12.

    Let's talk for a moment about what byu has FAILED to accomplish in the BCS era. Utah accomplished it (twice), TCU accomplished it (Twice), BSU accomplished it, even Hawaii got it done.

    What's wrong with byu? Why did the they come up not just short but never even entered into the conversation? The BCS era is over and byu has what done with the opportunity?

  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 3:26 p.m.

    @ Uteology:

    If you do need a good laugh, try the mirror. The way you pick and choose your info is almost hilarious. You are full of emotion and rhetoric, but very short of actual facts.

    To start with, I never said BYU would do well in the PAC12. Go back and check. I simply stated they might do better than Utah has done so far. That's based on the fact that literally all national polls and ranking services currently consider BYU a better team than Utah... without exception Check the latest polls. Facts are facts... whether you agree or not.

    And in almost everyone's football books, those nationally recognized pundits carry much more weight than you do. For you to even compare your hand-picked rhetoric to their inclusive objectified facts used in analytical rankings is truly a good laugh. So do so. It's on you.

    And like it or not, the only other meaningful info we can use over a broader compilation spectrum for comparative purposes is how BYU and Utah have done in their respective BCS games over fairly recent history. Fair or not, Bronco has better percentages than Kyle... Laugh or cry. Your choice.

  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 2:59 p.m.

    @ MyPerspective:

    You and a few ultra-ute fans don't seem to get it no matter how simply it's spelled out for you.

    BYU fans are very happy we have the opportunity to play on a Big Stage every year. If we win enough games, like almost all other college teams, we would then go to a BCS bowl game. Boise State proved that when they were still playing in the WAC, as did Utah when they were still in the MWC.

    Because of BYU's affiliation with ESPN, they play on a much bigger national stage than the Utes do. Even the biggest TV satellite company (Direct-TV) still doesn't carry the PAC12 tv network. As such, BYU definitely has a bigger "stage" than Utah. BYU played more big-name teams this year than Utah or Boise State ever did when they played in BCS bowl games.

    So to answer your question... Yes, most BYU fans are very pleased with our current stage arrangement.
    On top of that, BYU still has more control over their schedule (a plus) than Utah does with theirs (bummer). In fact, that's still a common excuse for Utah fans whenever losing.

  • jarka-rus Layton, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 2:53 p.m.

    If a W is a W then an L is an L right? So if a team goes 0-12 but loses by 7 or less in all of those games its still a great accomplishment? and they are just right there to contend? lol love Pac logic. Byu is 8-4 so by that logic are way above being contenders. Good job Byu!!! While barely losing to Notre Dame, Utah and Wisconsin.

  • oddman ,
    Dec. 2, 2013 2:41 p.m.

    I'm a convert. Stars do matter as has been adroitly explained. Most teams have a good first string, but the stronger recruiting (stars) teams don't get paper thin when a starter goes down. Watching Wisconsin and Notre Dame's depth made an obvious impression that depth begins with the star count and as the season winds down, injuries to starters depletes teams with fewer top quality athletes and lessens their chances of winning the close ones.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 2:29 p.m.



    Bronco is 9-8(53%) versus PAC 12 teams
    Kyle is 13-21(38%) versus PAC 12 teams

    No amount of slicing and dicing that stat will change the fact that Bronco has been MUCH more competitive versus PAC 12 teams, than Kyle.



    When Kyle played 1-2 PAC-12 teams, like Bronco does each year, he was: 4-3 (57%)
    The opponents were a combined 52-37 (58%)

    Bronco is 10-7 (58%)
    The opponents were a combined 98-114 (46%)

    It's okay if you don't understand the difference between competing against 1-2 PAC-12 teams a year and competing against 9 PAC-12 teams.

  • Rockwell Baltimore, MD
    Dec. 2, 2013 2:28 p.m.


    There are two iconic trophies that represent the epitome of team and individual achievement in major college football - the Crystal Football National Championship Trophy and the Heisman Trophy.

    Both trophies are displayed proudly in BYU's Legacy Hall of Fame.

    Utah has never even come close to winning either.

    No fan in their right mind would even consider trading a BCS berth for either.

    The list of major college football national champions and Heisman Trophy winners will endure as long a major college football is played.

    The "prestige" of being a BCS buster is quickly fading and will soon be nothing more than a footnote on major college football history.

    How do BYU fans feel about not ever playing in a BCS game? A little disappointed, nothing more.

    BYU has already played on the biggest stage in major college football, a national championship game, something Utah fans can only dream of being a part of.

  • 1978 Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 2:09 p.m.

    "Now, I am going to ask you three again...Are you pleased that the BCS era has come and gone and that your cougs never got so much as a sniff at the big game?"

    I am not one of the three that you listed but I will take that one.

    I must admit it is very disappointing to not have been a participant in a BCS bowl game like such football tradition rich schools as Northern Illinois, Connecticut and Hawaii (Utah).

    We just have to unite ourselves with the schools that have both a national championship and Heismann Trophy winner such as USC, Notre Dame, Ohio State and Michigan (BYU).

    Somehow that little consolation prize is good enough for BYU fans. Go Figure.

  • Common-Tator Saint Paul, MN
    Dec. 2, 2013 1:58 p.m.

    @Utah95 - "I know that your claim that BYU would win more games than Utah in the Pac 12 is popular among the BYU faithful, but what evidence do you have to support it?"

    Over the last 10 seasons, excluding Utah, BYU is 9-5 against Pac-10/12 teams. If you take it over the last 8 seasons, that goes to 9-2. While previous seasons are never a guarantee, one might look to this to say they'd be competitive.

  • Gone fishin PAC Country, WA
    Dec. 2, 2013 1:42 p.m.

    let's look at how they contended against WSU this year! Yeah, I didn't think so.

  • Just Wondering... Gilbert, AZ
    Dec. 2, 2013 1:40 p.m.

    ....which team, BYU or Utah, has gotten more bowl profit sharing money from the other school between 1975 and 2010 while the teams were in the same conference?

    Before you answer, consider that when a non-BCS team makes a BCS bowl, the payout is reduced, and split between ALL non BCS schools. Utah hasn't contributed nearly as much as you would like to think.

  • Gone fishin PAC Country, WA
    Dec. 2, 2013 1:39 p.m.

    The writer of this article is just throwing the utes a bone since they have to live in the same city. I'm sure he really didn't mean what he wrote. Who could? The utes are a disaster in both football and basketball, but hey they d well in skiing.

  • Gone fishin PAC Country, WA
    Dec. 2, 2013 1:35 p.m.

    The utes are contenders already. They own the basement of the over-rated pac. What more did they expect? When you can't consistently beat the other bottom feeders you are right where you belong. Have a nice bowl-less season and enjoy the real football programs on TV in their bowls.

    Next year looks to be the same as the last three but with maybe one less win.

  • deductive reasoning Arlington, VA
    Dec. 2, 2013 1:26 p.m.


    Current "BCS" Standings

    #39 BYU
    #56 Utah

    Congratulations! For all of Utah's PAC 12ness, you're barely in the upper half of the BCS standings with no bowl, while that Independent program down south once again finishes in the top third and is headed to their 9th straight bowl.

    The only thing Utah fans are "accomplishing" by their arrogant disparagement of the WAC and MWC is diminishing the only meager accomplishments the Utes have ever had.

  • MyPerspective Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 1:14 p.m.


    Now, I am going to ask you three again...Are you pleased that the BCS era has come and gone and that your cougs never got so much as a sniff at the big game?

    Enlighten us, Duck...how much did byu make off of Utah's appearance in the two (count'em 2) BCS bowl games. Say what you want but support what you say. I have to tell ya, sport, whatever the amount byu received (and it was at or very near $1M for ever team in the conference) it was far more than byu deserved. Before you pontificate on that answer, give us your opinion regarding my first question. We all know you have one, what is it?

    In Duckhunter fashion, I will ask the same question a different way...

    How do you people feel about NEVER making it to a big game on the grandest of stages?

  • BeSmart Cheyenne, WY
    Dec. 2, 2013 1:11 p.m.

    BYU has not even come close to losing to every good team since independence.
    BYU played 8 bowl teams this year 8 that is pretty good.
    USA Today re-rankings of BYU schedule
    Virginia-L (105)
    Texas-W (22)
    Utah-L (76)
    MTSU-W (55)
    USU-W (48)
    GT-W (46)
    Houston-W (36)
    BSU-W (43)
    Notre Dame-L (28)
    Nevada-W (91)
    Utah is better than this ranking but BYU had a decent season, Utah I think is a good team.
    Colorado is 97 if anyone wants to know.
    Good luck to both schools in the future and stay classy fans.
    Merry Christmas

  • Duckhunter Highland, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 12:52 p.m.


    "The University of Utah gave byu $2M from our inclusion in the BCS."

    False, that is a complete and total fabrication, I won't even give you credit for just being ignorant because this has been discussed on here far to many times for you to be ignorant.

  • Warrior Parent Belle Glade, FL
    Dec. 2, 2013 12:48 p.m.

    With BYU going to play either Washington or USC in their bowl game the last week of December... and Utah spending their holidays ice fishing, We can now get on to Basketball Season!

    BYU currently sits at #9 in the RPI (Ratings Percentage Index (RPI), used by the NCAA to help pick at-large teams and determine seeds for the NCAA Tournament. )

    BYU is among nice company hovering between...

    8Michigan State
    9Brigham Young
    10Wichita State
    11Ohio State

    Utah is #155 among the likes of

    153New Orleans
    157Grand Canyon

  • jpjazz Sandy, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 12:36 p.m.

    Utah has a tough task ahead to upgrade their talent. They have to compete with BYU for instate and national LDS athletes and with 4 California PAC12 schools in the state with the largest concentration of high school athletes.

    When they joined the PAC, I predicted that the Utes would dominate the in state recruiting wars. But what we have seen is BYU making strides to create a nation brand with the ESPN and BYUTV broadcasts which appeals to the LDS athlete and the resurgence of Utah State gaining prominence in the MWC further pulling from the Utes pool of mid level players.

    Now that we are approaching the 4th year of Whits PAC 12 recruiting cycle it seems obvious that the U will struggle to reach a break-even record, far short of what will lead locals to continue the support with ticket sales and ongoing alumni contributions. For that reason I would look for Dr Hill to bring in a new coach with recruiting experience beyond the traditional Utah recruiting map, another Urban Myer with ties to the Midwest and Southeast would benefit the program for the long term and energize the program in the short run.

    Go Utes!

  • DeepBlue Anaheim, CA
    Dec. 2, 2013 12:33 p.m.

    My Perspective

    Are you pleased that the BCS era has come and gone and that the Utes never even came close to playing for a BCS championship, which, after all, was the ultimate goal of creating the BCS?

    btw, before you get all indignant about how close the Utes were in 2004 and 2008, just remember, the Utes finished #6 in the final BCS standings both years, and finished #5 and #4 in the final Coaches polls, the poll that officially crowns the BCS champion as national champion.

  • DeepBlue Anaheim, CA
    Dec. 2, 2013 12:27 p.m.

    Bleed Crimson

    "They get their national exposure they were craving, but they've also been nationally exposed by every good team on their schedule for the last 3 years."

    How was BYU "exposed" versus Texas this year, a team that could still win the Big 12 and play in a BCS game?

    How was BYU "exposed" by #16/#17 Utah State in 2012?

    How was BYU "exposed" losing 3 games to Top 25 teams by a total of 10 points in 2012?

    How was BYU "exposed" losing to Texas 16-17 and TCU 28-38 in 2011?

    Utah fans are prone to using hyperbole when the actual facts contradict your crimson-goggles shaded narratives.

  • LonestarRunner Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 12:20 p.m.


    What Duckhunter said!

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 12:18 p.m.

    You would think from all the lively posts that the rivalry game was back where it belongs...right after Thanksgiving.

    Why can't we all just get along. I mean, BYU, you have gone independent, play some tough games, get to a bowl game, and enjoy the increased revenue and exposure on ESPN. Happy for you. You have some solid tradition and are well recognized nationally.

    Utah as a program has worked extremely hard since the Ronnie Mac era to improve from what had been a program flagging for years. Fred Whittingham (one-time Cougar) told Kyle Utah was a sleeping giant. Mac, Meyer, Whit, and Chris Hill improved the Utah program the last two decades and it led to a PAC 12 invite. We love our team and the success they have had and we stick with them when we have tough seasons too. Ridicule, mock, and scorn if you must, we are happy.

    Cougar fans, you endured some pretty brutal seasons under coach Crowton and most BYU fans I talk to are not overjoyed with Bronco/Anae 2.0, but you stick with your team.

    The rivalry is alive and perhaps a little too well.

  • MyPerspective Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 12:11 p.m.

    @ Cats

    "I've said it before. I'll say it again. The PAC-12 has been a disaster for the Utes. They are in completely over their heads!"

    You can say it all you want, it won't change a thing...there's not a single Utah fan on the planet complaining about being the Pac-12. Contending in our elite conference is the subject of the article and the Utes are very close to doing just that.

    How about you, Cats, are you pleased that the BCS era has come and gone and your cougs never got so much as a sniff at the big game?

  • 81Ute Central, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 12:08 p.m.

    "The fact is, until football has a real playoff that includes the conference champion from every single conference, regardless of weak anyone thinks they are, there will not be a true national champion, it is till mythical."
    Of course 1984 is excluded from the mythical championship part.

  • MyPerspective Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 12:07 p.m.

    Still at it, eh, Duck. At least you came up with something different to say.

    Now, I will ask you again...are you pleased byu never earned the opportunity to play on the big stage (BCS)?

  • Bleed Crimson Sandy, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 11:44 a.m.

    @ Cats

    "I've said it before. I'll say it again. The PAC-12 has been a disaster for the Utes. They are in completely over their heads!"

    The same can be said about BYU! Independence has been a disaster for BYU. The only thing they have going for them is their ESPN deal. Even that is a double edge sword. They get their national exposure they were craving, but they've also been nationally exposed by every good team on their schedule for the last 3 years. Even Utah has beaten BYU all three years since going Indy on ESPN. Lucky for BYU, they have enough cream puffs to help them get to bowl eligibility so they can play in their mediocre bowl game.

    Utah may struggle now in the PAC-12, but they'll eventually turn things around. The PAC-12 offers significantly more rewards than independence and the MWC. But each conference team has to earn it on the field.

  • 81Ute Central, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 11:40 a.m.

    Why stop there with championships?
    The Skyline Conference: Utes = 10 BYU = 0
    Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference: Utes = 10 BYU = 0

    What about future conference championship prospects: Utah = yes BYU = nope.

  • Ifel Of'a-sofa Alpine, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 11:36 a.m.


    utes had 7 home games and were 4-3
    utes has 5 road games and were 1-4 (the 1 being byu)

    thank goodness you had more home games this year or it would have been uglier than 5-7

    the pac10.2 has to be wondering "WHAT were we thinking?"

    Locker Clean out Monday

  • 81Ute Central, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 11:31 a.m.

    Utah has given BYU more bowl profits than they have earned themselves, what do ya think? The cougs offer no appreciation either.

  • BYU9293 Clinton, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 11:24 a.m.

    Based on overall past performance, over the previous 10-20 years, then BYU could be considered as more likely to compete for championships in football and other sports. Let us not forget, the invitation is not all about football, but other sports also.
    To Chris B and others, it is good you don't view yourselves as a punching bag for others in your conference, that way you can be happy, really. I don't consider byu a punching bag for others easy, so good. however, your conference record over the last 3 years says you are a punching bag for them.
    It is also interesting how quickly ute fans jumped on the bcs propaganda bandwagon when they were fighting so hard against it just the year before joining. The fact is, until football has a real playoff that includes the conference champion from every single conference, regardless of weak anyone thinks they are, there will not be a true national champion, it is till mythical. If the BCS teams are so great, they should welcome an easy game in the first rounds. Where does that leave byu as independent...in trouble if we ever went to a real playoff.

  • MyPerspective Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 11:24 a.m.

    Salt Lake City, UT

    "Do you honestly think that BYU has the option of scheduling any opponent they want, any time they want?"

    Nobody believes that, OnestarRunner, and the truthfulness of that statement will really hit home when byu fans begin to focus on what Holmoe has lined up for 2014.

    Preseason, byu's schedule looked fairly respectable on paper. Now that we've reached the end of the year, it's clear that it was a joke. But again...it will be wildly entertaining when the byu collective starts to focus on 2014.

  • BYU9293 Clinton, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 11:20 a.m.

    Fans are funny. BYU and Utah won exactly the same number of MWC championships while in that league...4 each. In old WAC byu won 19 and Utah won 2. Thus, BYU was not the #3 team (overall speaking) from the mwc. They have finished 3rd some years, but so did Utah. So that idea just does not wash. I cannot say if byu would win more games that Utah in the pac and I don't think that mattered, from people at the meetings, byu was considered before Utah and was not invited because they refuse to play on sundays. Those are the facts, period. Any other version is just plain not true.
    Also, the big12 wanted byu and did not offer an "official" invitation because byu would not give in on tv rights, which was the best move for byu. The conferences normally make the deals first and it is firmly in place before they ever offer an 'official' invitation, just the way it is done.

  • phoenix Gilbert, AZ
    Dec. 2, 2013 11:21 a.m.


    Bronco is 9-8(53%) versus PAC 12 teams
    Kyle is 13-21(38%) versus PAC 12 teams

    No amount of slicing and dicing that stat will change the fact that Bronco has been MUCH more competitive versus PAC 12 teams, than Kyle.

  • MyPerspective Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 11:15 a.m.

    Truth Machine
    Salt Lake City, UT

    "The University of Utah gave BYU $2M from our inclusion in the BCS.

    LOL at your spin!"

    There's no spin in the comment I posted. The same cannot be said about your post, however.
    Now, I will ask you again...are you pleased byu never earned the opportunity to play on the big stage (BCS)?

  • talkinsports Gilbert, AZ
    Dec. 2, 2013 11:14 a.m.

    So Utah is on the cusp of being competitive in the PAC because the Utes lost a lot of close games, but Utah has "owned" BYU lately because the Utes have won the majority of the 14 of 17 games that have been decided by 7 points or less in the closing minutes or in overtime?

    Bottom line - final record and rankings are the final word on each season.

    In 6 of the 9 seasons during the Bronco/Kyle era, BYU has finished with a better record AND higher ranking than Utah.

    Despite the head-to-head losses in 2013, Stanford and BYU are both better than Utah.

    BCS standings: #39 BYU > #58 Utah
    USA Today rankings: #34 BYU > #76 Utah
    Sagarin rankings: #28 BYU > #33 Utah
    Composite rankings(98): #29 BYU > #54 Utah

  • Spokane Ute Spokane, WA
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:55 a.m.

    @Draper Ute Fan\

    How is Bronco vs. Kyle? Just askin......

    BYU fans never post that stat when comparing the two. Now that's curious?

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:55 a.m.


    Stop day dreaming that BYU would do better playing in a Big 5 league.

    On what planet can a 3rd place MWC team be able to compete in the Big 12 and PAC-12 when it has been proven that the #1 and #2 MWC teams cannot?

    Is it because BYU’s current talent is 0-8 vs Utah and TCU?

    Or maybe because…

    In 2013 BYU is 2-2 vs teams with a losing record (Utah was 2-0).
    BYU is 2-4 vs PAC-12 since going Indy (two wins over 3 win teams).
    BYU has a losing record against Big 5 teams under Bronco.

    Please provide the pundit that said BYU can compete in the Big 12 or PAC-12 today. I can use a laugh.

  • Truth Machine Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:52 a.m.

    My Perspective

    "The University of Utah gave BYU $2M from our inclusion in the BCS."

    LOL at your spin!

    Utah didn't "give" BYU anything. The amount BYU received from the BCS for Utah's bowl participation wasn't even close to $2 million.

    BYU receives substantially more revenue from ONE home game televised on ESPN, than BYU ever received from Utah playing in a BCS bowl.

  • U 90 Corona, CA
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:50 a.m.

    Ahh yes, "one game does not a season make", the favorite battle cry of Y faithful

    A respectable season, by golly, should be built on the backs of cupcakes to ensure inclusion in the Kraft Fight Hunger bowl. That's the definition of true and honorable season.

    0-4, 3-9... no computers or cupcakes to mask reality just straight up head-to-head football.

  • LonestarRunner Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:45 a.m.


    "Unlike BYU, who can actually choose to fill up on 4 cupcakes each year, then play 4 "upper" teams from non-BCS conferences, like Boise State and/or San Jose State, and 4 mid to lower teams from BCS conferences."

    LOL at your over-simplification.

    Do you honestly think that BYU has the option of scheduling any opponent they want, any time they want? BYU, in only its 3rd season as an Independent, put together a 2013 schedule that was TOUGHER than ANY schedule Utah had ever played, until this season.

    The simple truth is NOBODY knows how good or bad a team might be 3 or 4 years from now. Notre Dame, for example, could be a national championship contender, like last season, or merely decent, like this year. Even Utah State could be a Top 25 team, or simply a decent team.

    Houston, Georgia Tech, and Utah State could have each been BCS bowl contenders. Texas still is.

    It's laughable that you criticize BYU's built in cupcakes, while Utah has two built in cupcakes every year - a Big Sky team and Colorado.

  • Ufan Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:34 a.m.


    "You cite the SOS schedule from when Utah was a member of MWC, like it was their choice to play those teams."

    Yet, Utah fans have the unmitigated gall to criticize BYU's 1984 SOS when BYU won the National Championship?

    Pot meet kettle.

  • WeberJazz Vancouver, WA
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:33 a.m.

    Agreed. Hypothetically, if the ten best teams in the country were all in the same conference, the worst among them would have seven or eight losses and would never be considered by the AP or coaches poll. While this is obviously an extreme example, the Utes really did prove themselves in an outstanding Pac-12. See reidlaw.us/reidratings/index.html

  • MyPerspective Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:32 a.m.

    Let's change the subject matter just a bit...

    The University of Utah gave byu $2M from our inclusion in the BCS. The BCS era has come and gone. Are byu fans pleased that byu never had the opportunity to play on the big stage?

  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:30 a.m.

    @ U 90:

    We all admit Kyle has lately had Bronco's number. That's old news. Unfortunately for Ute fans like you, that's the only remaining nail to hang your hat on. But don't read too much into it. Before this latest mini-streak, BYU beat Utah 3 of the previous 4 games. This ongoing rivalry goes back and forth. It always has and it always will... until they quit playing each other.

    Just because Utah has recently done well against the Cougars, other BCS teams... not as well. In fact, Bronco has an overall better record against BCS conference teams than Kyle has. But it hurts your argument to look at that bigger picture.

    Per your analysis, we should consider Utah better than Stanford. Sorry. That doesn't work.

    You forgot to mention in your little analysis that Utah also lost to a team (OSU) who themselves lost to a division II college team. As much as you would NOT like to admit it, that's all part of the ups and downs of every season for most teams. That's why the bigger picture is always used by objective, unbiased fans (yourself excluded).

  • LonestarRunner Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:26 a.m.


    National Championship trumps also-ran BCS bowl, ANYDAY!

    A dozen teams play in BCS bowls every year, including mediocre teams like Pittsburgh, Hawaii, and Northern Illinois, but there is only ONE (or TWO, if split) National Champion.

    AP #1
    Coaches #1

    BYU finished #1 in both.

    btw, It's laughable that a Utah fan doesn't know that it's Arizona, NOT ASU, that hasn't played in the Rose Bowl.


    U 90

    "why leave it up to a computer to tell us who is better"

    Because one game does not a season make - see Utah and Stanford.

    It's funny how Utah fans that were once so enamored with the BCS computers, so casually dismiss the computer rankings when they don't support the latest Ute fan narrative.

    Latest BCS Standings

    #39 BYU
    #57 Utah

  • MyPerspective Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:23 a.m.

    "Take off those crimson-colored, BYU-hating goggles already. BYU played the 32nd toughest schedule in 2013, tougher by almost 10 places than Utah's toughest schedule EVER, 41st, prior to 2013."

    That's a stupid comparison. So the bottom line of your post is that Utah's schedule is light years ahead of byu's schedule...this year. Yeah, we know that already. We knew it before the season started and are well aware of it now. The problem for the Utes is...it doesn't matter because byu is not Utah's competition.

    You people are sounding more frustrated and desperate all the time.

  • U 90 Corona, CA
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:22 a.m.

    Ed Grady,

    I don't see Utah fans claiming to be 8 plays away from the national championship game like Y fans were last year. BYU fans have cornered the market for that type of rhetoric.

    Utah may be as bad a Colorado but certainly much better than BYU. Use 0-4 and 3-9 as evidence.

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:18 a.m.

    Skywalker, "simple" is right. You oversimplified the comparisons. The Oregon win was the Mike Bellotti years when Oregon was nowhere near where it is several years later. Utah beat Oregon then as well when they came to SLC in 2004. UCLA was suffering through the Rick Neuheisel years (now PAC 12 Rick and former UCLA coach). Some of the other games were nonconference games or wins in the LV bowl when they played the sixth best team in the PAC 12. Not exactly an apples to apples comparison.

    If your claim is that Bronco would win more than 38% against the PAC 12 every week in CONFERENCE GAMES based on his record of 9-8 under the circumstances outlined, I don't share your enthusiastic analysis.

  • KimmyP Granstville, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:14 a.m.

    Wow, true blue, talk about looking through blue colored glasses. You cite the SOS schedule from when Utah was a member of MWC, like it was their choice to play those teams. That is what being a member of an actual conference does, it gives a team set games to play each year. They only have room for 3 other games.

    Unlike BYU, who can actually choose to fill up on 4 cupcakes each year, then play 4 "upper" teams from non-BCS conferences, like Boise State and/or San Jose State, and 4 mid to lower teams from BCS conferences. Then at the end of the year, hold up the 8-4 record as proof the cougars have accomplished something.

    BTW, take a look at the SOS this year for both teams. That's what I thought.

  • U 90 Corona, CA
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:13 a.m.

    @TrueBlue "2008 - Utah played the 56th SOS, only 1 regular season win versus an opponent from a decent conference with a winning record"

    In 2008 Utah beat the following ranked teams; Oregon State, BYU, TCU, Alabama.... two of which were top 10 teams. Don't try to make 2008 something less than it was. BYU has never even come close to beating so many ranked teams in one season. Honest question for you. Has BYU ever beaten two teams in the same season that finished the year in the top 25?

  • Ed Grady Idaho Falls, ID
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:09 a.m.

    We're almost there - blah - blah - blah. A couple of plays and we're in the Rose Bowl - blah - blah - blah. Seriously, You're almost as bad as Colorado and Cal. You finished 10/12 in the Pac-12. When will this blather end?

  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:08 a.m.

    @ Kimmy P:

    How long have been the self-appointed spokesperson for Cougar fans? I dislike having to say this, but you're now starting to sound an awfully lot like the infamous Chris B. And that's a place you really don't want to go. If you are actually a Ute fan, then stick with speaking for them, and forget about trying to put words in the mouths of opponents. It has already cost you in lost credibility.

    @ Ute 95:

    The reason some people feel BYU might've done better in the PAC is because literally every national poll and ranking service have them listed as the better team... without exception. The Sagarin rankings use every conceivable, measurable analysis tool (including strength of schedule). Football pundents (who don't try to measure their entire season based on the results of only one game) pay attention to it. And the latest, updated Sagarin rankings have BYU 5 places better than Utah... 28th versus 33rd.

    If you can be even semi-honest, you'd have to admit that playing teams like Notre Dame, Wisconsin, Boise State and Texas in front of national ESPN audiences is NOT being in a small pond.

  • USAlover Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:06 a.m.

    Utes Win/Loss record 5-7

    Utes Moral Victory record 12-0

    How awesome! Great to be a Ute!

  • U 90 Corona, CA
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:04 a.m.


    why leave it up to a computer to tell us who is better or a coach who doesn't have time to watch anything other than game film of his next opponent. why not refer to head-to-head results when they're right in front of you?

    Utah 30 USU 26
    Utah 20 BYU 13

    Utah 3 USU 1
    Utah 4 BYU 0

  • SoonerUte Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:02 a.m.

    BYU9293 "byu is getting more 4 star recruits"
    I think you mean "Kansas is getting BYU's 4 star recruits".

    "So just be glad that both BYU and Utah are happy where they are."
    That is a good message. The PAC12 money has been good for the whole state. Its not just about football. BYU achieves its goal of spreading the word by being nationally exposed.

    "punching bag for a major conference"
    A big frustration for Cougar fans is that Utah fans don't feel that way. But to be fair, I view BYU as the "independent punching bag". Cougs didn't really rise up to the challenge of their toughest season ever, eh? As you say, thank goodness BYU didn't join the Big 12 where BYU would be below TCU (i.e. last place).

  • KimmyP Granstville, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:03 a.m.

    It's rather ironic how people here go on with a lengthy analysis of how long it has taken ASU to make it to the Rose Bowl, or how long it may take the Utes to make it.

    But, they completely ignore this question; how long will it take BYU to make it to the Rose Bowl, or any other BCS Bowl, given they have chosen to follow the route of independence?

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:55 a.m.

    True Blue, would BYU expect to be considered for a BCS bowl if they went undefeated as an independent? In 2001, the Cougs were in the thick of the hunt for a BCS bowl until late losses derailed the effort. How would Cougar nation have reacted despite a less than stellar SOS that year had they won every game and not been invited to the BCS?

    SOS in the BYU national championship year has been discussed ad infinitum as being suspect, so who is changing the narrative? BYU fan would have expected nothing less had they gone undefeated and you know it. The argument by BYU fans has always been "we can only beat who is on the schedule and we did that." I guess that argument is a BYU exclusive?

    Utah "beat who was on our schedule" and won every game in 2004 & 2008, including a quality win against Alabama who won 2 of the next 3 national titles in the Sugar Bowl.

    Apply your logic to your own school.

  • U 90 Corona, CA
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:55 a.m.

    @ Steven S Jarvis "Utah played a pretty solid schedule this year"

    I think #1 SOS in the country is more than pretty solid. The Utes will need that Idaho State game on the schedule next year since their SOS will be at the top again in 2014. Qualifying for a bowl in 14 will again be a monumental task for the Utes because they don't have 5 built in wins to guarantee bowl inclusion.... playing teams like Savannah State, UNLV, UConn (2-9), Middle Tennessee State, and Virginia who's only other win in 2014 was against The Virginia Military Institute.

  • Truthfully Eagle Mountain, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:54 a.m.

    I don't see improvement next year. I project a 3-4 (Idaho State, 1-2 pac wins and maybe win over Fresno) win season next year and a new coach for 2015.
    Graduating several Key linemen and skill position players without the depth to remain at the same level, along with this recruiting class shaping up to be the lowest rated since joining the pac will result in disappointment for the Utes.

  • skywalker Palo Alto, CA
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:47 a.m.


    "...not sure where the logic comes from that BYU would be more competitive in the PAC 12..."


    Bronco is 9-8(53%) versus PAC 12 teams, including wins over Oregon, Washington, UCLA, Arizona, WSU and OSU.

    Kyle is 13-21(38%) versus PAC 12 teams, winless versus Oregon and Washington.

    Let's not forget that BYU's two best corners were lost to injury before the 2013 season began - both will be back next season.

  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:39 a.m.

    Another "moral victory" story for the Utes. How nice.

    Also, yet another online moniker for Chris b. This time its Ken. After each new name runs the coarse in credibility and silly statements, he just starts all over again with another one. Any new guarantees that we can take to the bank this week, Chris... ummm, I mean Ken?

    Some point blank honesty, Chris... I know of a number of people who have quit being Ute fans because of you. I don't know of any whosoever who have become Ute fans because of you. Obnoxiousness and broken promises have that kind of effect on people.

    When BYU comes close to beating the Utes, it doesn't matter. We're told it's all about wins and loses. Period.
    But now many Ute fans are apparently taking solace in coming ever so close, but still losing. Interesting. But also hypocritical.

    I'm glad Utah beat Colorado to keep from finishing in the very bottom of the conference basement. But in all likelihood, the football players (doesn't include you, Chris... or Ken) would've rather played in a bowl game. Any bowl game beats sitting home on the couch.

  • skywalker Palo Alto, CA
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:37 a.m.

    USAToday Re-ranks the teams from 1-125

    #34 BYU (8-4)
    #48 USU (8-4)
    #76 Utah (5-7)

  • U 90 Corona, CA
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:36 a.m.

    @ worf ..."that's why BYU wasn't invited. They would win more conference games than either Colorado, or Utah"

    Which makes complete since given that BYU can beat Utah. What 0-4 against Utah says worf is that BYU would struggle just as much, if not more, than the Utes have in the PAC12.

  • MyPerspective Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:28 a.m.


    Using the "logic" of the article, BYU was near a championship in football. They were, "oh so close!" Please! BYU was nowhere closer to ANOTHER Championship as Utah is to competing the the PAC 12.

    Keep hoping, ThomasJefferson. You people are sounding more desperate to be relevant all the time.

    IMO, that's why BYU wasn't invited. They would win more conference games than either Colorado, or Utah.

    Please tell this board, worf, that you are being tongue-in-cheek, here. Surely there was a glint in your eye and smile on your face as you wrote this...a proclamation that is both uninformed and will NEVER be proven.

  • TrueBlue Orem, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:26 a.m.


    At the end of 2004 and 2008, Ute nation proudly proclaimed they were relevant in the national scene and should be considered for a BCS bowl, yet:

    2004 - Utah played the 67th SOS, only 3 regular season opponents with winning records, all with 7-5 records, and only 1 opponent from a decent conference with a winning record

    2008 - Utah played the 56th SOS, only 1 regular season win versus an opponent from a decent conference with a winning record

    According to the new Utah fan narrative, Utah's entire football history is built on a slate of mediocrity in a terrible conference.

    Take off those crimson-colored, BYU-hating goggles already. BYU played the 32nd toughest schedule in 2013, tougher by almost 10 places than Utah's toughest schedule EVER, 41st, prior to 2013.

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:23 a.m.

    USA Lover, the record clearly is not getting better, but I think I trust Coach Whittingham's analysis over an armchair QB, with all due respect, that the play on the field is improving. This was the deepest PAC 12 since Utah joined, as evidenced by most every major media group saying the PAC 12 was #2 behind the SEC as a power conference. Their lack of depth, particulary at the QB and DB positions killed them in the second half of the season, but there were some improvements this year.

    Worf, not sure where the logic comes from that BYU would be more competitive in the PAC 12 when the Cougs are losing to Utah. Team speed kills, so BYU's lack of team speed would be exposed beyond all recognition in the PAC 12. The front 7 of BYU would be solid, but their DB's would not fare well against the speed of the PAC 12.

  • Utah'95 FPO, AE
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:20 a.m.


    I know that your claim that BYU would win more games than Utah in the Pac 12 is popular among the BYU faithful, but what evidence do you have to support it?

    Please check the win-loss records of Utah and BYU (I listed them in an earlier post) since leaving the MWC. You can read how I interpret the data. What's your interpretation?

  • mohokat Ogden, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:08 a.m.

    Utes aren't that far from contending’

    Is that a glass half full comment?

    Maybe they are not that far from collapse then.

  • DraperUteFan Draper, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 8:56 a.m.

    Cougs, I'm glad you feel better about yourselves after tearing down your rival up north. If you are happy with your status, your competition, your 8-4 record, your bowl, and your results on the field, I'm happy for you.

    You can bag on Utah, mock the move to the PAC 12, say we will never have a chance to win a conference championship, blah, blah, blah.

    I love the challenge of a difficult league. Utah is getting better, as evidenced by the fact that they won 4 straight over BYU and beat a very good Stanford team. Read postgame comments by ASU coach Graham. He said the Utes played them tougher than anybody.

    Cougar fans, you wouldn't give up your NC 29 years ago for any bowl game, conference championship, or anything else.

    We won't give up the chase for the Rose Bowl, and along the way will have some very fun seasons and go bowling many seasons. It makes little sense why that is so intolerable to most of you that you look for every opportunity to pounce on Utah on these threads.

    Take a run, some valium, or something to calm your angry selves.

  • USAlover Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 8:55 a.m.

    I agree that BYU fans have nothing to say here since their team continually plays their worst, most timid game against the Utes.

    But to say that Utah is getting better is simply ridiculous.

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Dec. 2, 2013 8:28 a.m.

    It's Colorado, and Utah which has allowed the PAC 12 to have nine teams going to bowl games.

    Utah, and Colorado padded the the others with the wins needed to be bowl eligible.

    IMO, that's why BYU wasn't invited. They would win more conference games than either Colorado, or Utah.

    Smart decision by the conference, but I'd rather have BYU independent. I enjoy catching every game on TV, and seeing a variety of teams.

    Too each his own.

  • Steven S Jarvis Orem, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 8:26 a.m.

    Utah played a pretty solid schedule this year, which was probably the fifth most difficult schedule in the PAC 12. Cal played the most difficult schedule followed by Arizona State, USC and Stanford. Until Utah played Colorado this weekend, they played the second toughest schedule after Cal. Three of those teams played Notre Dame. Arizona State also played Wisconsin. Cal, poor Cal played Ohio State.

    Utah competed. They were fun to watch. They will be fun to watch next year save the first game against Idaho State.

  • KimmyP Granstville, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 8:22 a.m.

    Down Under,

    Your analysis of the Utes for next year may be accurate, but what will certainly happen in 2014 for the cougars is they will end up 8-4 by playing 4 sure win teams, 4 lower tier teams, and four teams in the upper tiers of their BCS conferences, or someone like ND.

    Then at the end of the year, the coug nation will proudly proclaim they are relevant in the national scene and should be considered for a BCS bowl based on the "sterling" record they've produced year after year.

  • Hawk Littleton, CO
    Dec. 2, 2013 8:24 a.m.

    Whenever my Utah friends talk about Uah "dominating" BYU in the Bronco/Kyle era, I point out that a 6-3 record for Utah, with most of the games (with a glaring exception) coming down to the final series, I typically get the response of "oh, come on, score doesn't matter -- it's wins and losses, baby!" So I find it pretty amusing this season that ute fans are desperately clinging to relevance by chirping, "but we were close in almost every game!" Oh wait, score DOES matter??? Man, you guys are confusing me....

  • SportzFan Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 8:21 a.m.

    Washington State went to multiple Rose Bowls under Mike Price, and they are in the middle of nowhere, so it can be done. Of course, Price had a system people WANTED to play in. What IS Whitt's system? Why would someone want to play in it more than others?

  • TheNun Granstville, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 8:16 a.m.


    "byu is getting more 4 star recruits. but you need top of the line recruits to really compete with the big boys in college football on a week to week basis"

    Such a simple plan. It clearly is working out well for the cougars as they are able to compete with the big boys on a weekly basis. Middle Tennessee State, Idaho State, New Mexico State, San Jose State and Delusional State all succumbed easily to the 4 star recruits byu put on the field against them "on a week to week basis".

  • RDLV Costa Rica, 00
    Dec. 2, 2013 8:09 a.m.

    Let’s take a look at our season. We had five wins and seven losses.
    If we drop our worst loss, the Oregon game that we would all like to forget, and our largest win, the Weber State game, well it was against Weber State, it would leave us 4 and 6.
    Bottom line is that we lost those 6 games by an average of only 8 points. On the other hand, we only won the other four by an average of 6 points. It is true that we could have had a better season without some injuries and if some plays would have gone our way but it also could have been lot worse.

  • Utah'95 FPO, AE
    Dec. 2, 2013 7:46 a.m.


    You said, "I am so glad we did not fall for the Big 12 or Big East and stuck with our guns." Remember, the Big 12 did not offer BYU membership.

    I always knew that the Pac 10 was a tougher conference than the MWC, and the WAC before it. But Utah's experiences the past three years have just illustrated how wide the gap between the conferences really is. And don't kid yourself, BYU wouldn't have fared any better than Utah if they were in the same circumstances.

    Since leaving the MWC, Utah went 7-1 against non-BCS teams, 11-18 against BCS teams, and 3-0 against BYU. Meanwhile, BYU is 20-2 against non-BCS teams, 6-10 against BCS teams, and 0-3 against Utah.

    While I certainly wish Utah had more wins, I love that they are regularly competing against top flight opponents.

    I'm glad that you are happy with BYU's independent status. But what it amounts to is better television coverage of the same old BYU formula - padding the win column by playing lesser opponents.

    If you prefer being the big fish in a small pond, then you're rooting for the right team.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Dec. 2, 2013 7:30 a.m.

    Overall we showed improvement from last year, it just didn't equate to wins. This season was as frustrating, losing in the final minutes in 4 games, as it was disappointing.

    After beating Stanford at 4-2, I thought at worst we would go 2-4 the second half of the season.

    But lack of depth at QB and no identity in the running game was just not good enough in the PAC 12. The defense kept us in the game against @UA, @USC, ASU and it fell apart @WSU. At the end, we just couldn’t put a complete game togather.

  • BlueHusky Mission Viejo, CA
    Dec. 2, 2013 7:21 a.m.

    This is the third time I've commented on a Utah article. Utah will be bowling some years, but the recruiting advantages USC, UCLA, Stanford, Oregon, ASU have will preclude much success. And Utah is surprisingly bad in Olympic sports.

    But Utah should be competitive with AZ, Cal, WSU, and OSU must years.

    Washington is a puzzle; they have a good history, but have been poor lately. Hopefully, Sarkesian can bring them back.

    In short, neither Utah or Colorado is likely to have much success in the PAC-12. It is just unrealistic to think that Utah can be in the running for the Rose Bowl every year. Set your sights on a bowl game (New Mexico, Las Vegas, whatever). Once in a generation Utah will play for the championship, but they have to beat USC, ASU, and UCLA to get there. That will require down years for all three of those teams.

    Not very likely.

  • Frozen Chosen Savage, MN
    Dec. 2, 2013 7:14 a.m.

    Utah is the best college football team in Utah and Colorado

    Outside of those two states? Well...

  • RBN Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 7:11 a.m.

    I agree with the assessment with one (notable) exception. The offensive line play must improve dramatically. With all the talk about how improved the OL play was going to be, it by in large did not materialize.

  • geggett Orem, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 6:10 a.m.

    Mike Sorenson is clearly wrong. The Utes are exactly "that far" from contending. Always were; always will be.

  • Cats Somewhere in Time, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 5:46 a.m.

    I've said it before. I'll say it again. The PAC-12 has been a disaster for the Utes. They are in completely over their heads!

  • Who am I sir? Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 12:16 a.m.

    2004. Undefeated. The first BCS busters. Winning the Fiesta Bowl. As my family and I left the stadium I thought, "I have just seen the pinnacle of Utah football." I never thought Utah would top that.
    2008. Undefeated. Beating Alabama in the Sugar Bowl. This topped the 2004 year; however, I no longer thought Utah could not someday top this.
    2010 Joined the PAC-12. Achievement of goals I never imagined possible.

    Does 2013 rival these moments. No; however, the year was unlike any before.
    Never has a Utah team played a schedule ranked so high in difficulty. The latest AP poll lists Utah having played the number 7 team ( Utah won), the number 11 team (1 pt loss), the number 12 team (23 point loss) and the number 17 (7 point loss).
    In addition to these teams 5 other opponents at some time was either listed in the weekly AP poll or was shown to have received votes.

    So many games were so close and this with so many key players suffering season ending or missed game injuries .

    In my mind, this season was one of the most enjoyable ever. And I thank the team!

  • Down under Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 12:14 a.m.

    And so it begins. Utah is already talking about how great they will be next year. It seems I have heard this the past three years and look how it turned out. I predict a 4-8 or 5-7 season at best next year. With Erickson moving on to a more successful team and the rest of Whit's staff being fired they will be rebuilding, again.

    Sorry CB for the bad news but you should be used to it by now.

  • toosmartforyou Farmington, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 11:59 p.m.

    Utah isn't "that far away," Mr. Sorenson? Really?

    Utah had 7 conference wins at the start of the season. They now have 9, one coming against the last place team in their division. It will take 4 (yes, FOUR) seasons to accumulate 10 conference wins. (The other was proven to be a fluke.)

    This team looks a lot like the team that lost to UNLV 0 - 27 a few years ago and flubbed getting to the first PAC 12 Championship Game when they couldn't beat the worst road team in America at home with Norm Chow as the OC. But that year they had more wins than this year.

    They are a "few years" from going to the Rose Bowl? Really?

    Arizona has been in the PAC "Conference of Champions" for decades and has NEVER been to a Rose Bowl. In fact, of the 12 teams in the conference 9 (yes, NINE) of them are bowl eligible this year. The three that's aren't include California, Colorado and Utah. This is Utah's 2nd year in a row without going bowling. Why will that suddenly change? Is it because "Utah is better than last year?" Apparently the other teams are as well.

    Dec. 1, 2013 11:15 p.m.

    Ken, being supportive and having pride in one's team is all well and good, and I'm right there with you on that. I actually worked in the program while in school and had great experiences and built great relationships with some fantastic athletes. But I never tried to take credit for what the 105 guys practicing every week and the 40 or 50 guys on the field on Saturday accomplished. To me, that's almost as disrespectful to the players as the trolls that come here to try and tear them down for their shortcomings.

  • U-tar Woodland Hills, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 10:55 p.m.

    Wow, next year's pre season's hype is starting already. Next it will be BYU. Both programs are BORING and PREDICTABLE. It's a wonder anyone is interested in them at all.

  • Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 10:54 p.m.


    I'm not sure your claims of more 4 stars is accurate, but even if it is, it's a difference of 2 four stars vs 1 four star

    And again even if its true, that means byu is getting more 1 star kids than Utah if byu has a worse average star rating.

    Spin it all you want, Utah is getting better recruits.

    And in case you are tempted to use the reply of "then why is Utah losing?"

    Answer: we aren't playing 2.6 star teams in the PAC 12

  • Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 10:50 p.m.

    Rose bowl,

    And yet last year after Utah went bowl less Utah STILL beat byu in head to head AND average star recruiting.

    So even without going to a bowl, recruits are apparently picking Utah over byu. At least the better recruits are doing that.

  • SportzFan Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 10:32 p.m.

    "A couple years ago we could not have beaten Stanford and taken ranked ucla, asu, and Oregon state down to the last play. "

    You suffer from the same logical deficiency as Sorenson.

    "Against Oregon State, UCLA and Arizona, the Utes led in the fourth quarter before losing in the final minutes. And they nearly came back to beat Washington State."

    "A couple years ago" ASU, UCLA, Arizona and Wazzu were all somewhere between less-than-mediocre and lousy, but they hired better coaches and they improved. "A couple years ago," Utah BEAT those teams (and Oregon State). (Take off your selective-memory hat, Chris and think hard). I used to think Whitt would be the determining factor in the Utes' success. Turns out it could be he is the determining factor, in the other direction: 4 OC's in the last four years, worse record each year, losing to teams the Utes used to beat.

  • Cowboy Dude SAINT GEORGE, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 9:42 p.m.

    The losses to Oregon State, UCLA, and AZ State were heartbreaking. However, four wins were by 7 or less points. It could have been a lot worse.

    Those interceptions from tipped passes were heartbreaking. However, some of those tips were from Utah's own players.

    In the end, the season averaged out to be what it should be. Not contenders yet, but not too far either.

  • BYU9293 Clinton, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 9:40 p.m.

    And, Chris B, before you spout about how anyone would rather be in the Pac12...You are wrong. I for one, and I know many others, who would not rather be there. I am so glad we did not fall for the Big 12 or Big East and stuck with our guns. It all depends on what you want and want you value. If you want that big conference money, great, then you are where you want to be. BYU does not need that and they have a more important mission. So just be glad that both BYU and Utah are happy where they are. I personally would rather be going to bowl games each year than be the punching bag for others in a major conference. You don't mind that and that is okay. Different strokes for different folks. I am glad Utah fans are happy about being the Pac12, I hope they continue to be if they continue to struggle because I suspect they will struggle for quite some time. But I really mean it, I am glad they like where they are. I could not be more pleased about where BYU is right now.

  • General Alpine, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 9:38 p.m.

    Now that the Utes are in the PAC 12 those they recruit are noticed by the other teams who then compete more heavily with them for talent that may have slipped through the cracks and into the Ute camp in the past.

  • BYU9293 Clinton, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 9:36 p.m.

    Chris B,
    You are always talking about average number of stars, but you aren't getting the top line stars and until you do, you will not be competitive. Even though your average star rating may be higher than byu's, byu is getting more 4 star recruits. What that translates to is more overall depth for Utah and that is helpful, but you need top of the line recruits to really compete with the big boys in college football on a week to week basis. That is exactly why Utah will never be relevant in the pac12. Yes, you are getting more money, but you will not overtake the other teams. How many conference football championships have Arizona and Arizona State won in the last 35-40 years since joining the conference, and they are warm weather spots with some great advantages in recruiting. It is just the way it is. Utah realizes this and this is why they don't want to play Byu and Utah state each year, they want to face an easier team to pad their schedule with more wins and hopefully go 6 and 6 and get to some bowl games.

  • Rose Bowl call yet? Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 9:22 p.m.


    Good luck selling top recruits on the excitement of playing in the couch potato bowl every year.

  • Ken Sandy, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 9:21 p.m.

    Stgslc, you couldn't be more wrong. I haven't missed a home game in 5 years. I have been to numerous away games. I went to the sugar bowl. I graduated from the university. I buy new ute gear every year. I went crazy when we earned a pac 12 invite. I scream during the games an love when we win and hate when we lose. I love taking to the players and coaches at events, games, on campus. I donate to the university and the athletic department.

    If you or any fan doesn't feel a part of the team and program, I suggest you join us! Because yes, we are included. I am with Chris on this one. I am sorry you don't feel included in the program.

    Dec. 1, 2013 8:58 p.m.

    Chris, stop saying "we." You are not included in the team's successes or failures whatsoever.

  • Crow Sandy , UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 8:30 p.m.

    Can I get an amen brother testify.

  • Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 8:06 p.m.

    Nope we aren't. A couple years ago we could not have beaten Stanford and taken ranked ucla, asu, and Oregon state down to the last play.

    In our Mwc days we got decent mwc recruits, and often we lost in recruiting to other local program. Since our PAC 12 invite we have had a better average star recruiting class every year than every other local program. Our 3.0 average star recruiting last 4 years is a definite step up. Just for comparisons, byu has averaged 2.6 and usu 2.1 in those same 4 years. Again for comparison, alabama has a 3.7. Its no coincidence they have been one of the best and have among highest stars.

    Stars matter.

    With that said, we aren't playing 2.6 star teams in PAC 12 play.

    But considering guys redshirt and go on missions, our seniors are still a lot of Mwc recruits.

    A 3.0 is good enough for 7th in the PAC 12 last 4 years.

    And I think we will be a middle PAC 12 team very soon, and that will be a great feat

    The future is bright for the PAC 12 utes

  • Max Charlotte, NC
    Dec. 1, 2013 7:45 p.m.

    Absolutely! Those heartbreaking losses will start to fall Utah's way. The team is getting better each year.