Kragthorpe - The Salt Lake Tribune http://www.sltrib.com/columnists/Kragthorpe Stories from The Salt Lake Tribune &copy; 2014 The Associated Press, The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our privacy policy: http://www.sltrib.com/pages/privacy. en-us webmaster@sltrib.com (Webmaster) Kragthorpe: USC seeking consistency, a year after firing Kiffin http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58473551-89/usc-state-sarkisian-trojans.html.csp Steve Sarkisian could not have known that his life would change in a sequence of events that began almost exactly a year ago when USC fired coach Lane Kiffin. He could never say so, anyway. In any case, the ex-BYU quarterback ended up moving from Washington to USC, where he formerly worked as an assistant. The Trojans have some stability now, following NCAA sanctions and the coaching turnover, and Sarkisian describes the program as being “in a really good place.” The perception of USC took a bi... Steve Sarkisian could not have known that his life would change in a sequence of events that began almost exactly a year ago when USC fired coach Lane Kiffin. He could never say so, anyway. In any case, the ex-BYU quarterback ended up moving from Washington to USC, where he formerly worked as an assistant. The Trojans have some stability now, following NCAA sanctions and the coaching turnover, and Sarkisian describes the program as being “in a really good place.” The perception of USC took a bi... <img src="http://mngislctrib.112.2O7.net/b/ss/mngislctrib/1/H.17--NS/0?&pageName=RSS" height="1" width="1" border="0" alt=""/> 58473551@www.sltrib.com Tue, 30 Sep 2014 14:09:24 MDT Kragthorpe: Jazz want to make themselves worth watching again http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/jazz/58470297-87/jazz-team-kragthorpe-media.html.csp So the Jazz have gathered for coach Quin Snyder’s first training camp, and everyone recognizes that this new arrangement is going to require some unselfishness. That’s not even counting Gordon Hayward’s negotiations regarding how much time he’s allowed to spend playing video games. Hayward’s a dedicated gamer, but he’s married now. He knows that. The Jazz are not a very good NBA team at the moment. We all understand that. Where the buzzwords from Media Day come into play is in holding this team... So the Jazz have gathered for coach Quin Snyder’s first training camp, and everyone recognizes that this new arrangement is going to require some unselfishness. That’s not even counting Gordon Hayward’s negotiations regarding how much time he’s allowed to spend playing video games. Hayward’s a dedicated gamer, but he’s married now. He knows that. The Jazz are not a very good NBA team at the moment. We all understand that. Where the buzzwords from Media Day come into play is in holding this team... 58470297@www.sltrib.com Mon, 29 Sep 2014 18:47:01 MDT Kragthorpe: Utes outcoached, but punt was right call http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58467853-89/utah-utes-game-yard.html.csp Utah’s second-half collapse in Saturday’s 28-27 loss to Washington State was not exactly a strong endorsement for a coaching staff that has a lot to prove this season. Offensively, the Utes produced only a field goal after halftime, and that came via a short drive that started at the WSU 43-yard line after a fumble recovery. Defensively, the Utes gave up three touchdowns in the second half — two on long drives and the game-winner on an 81-yard pass play. Coach Mike Leach and the rest of the Coug... Utah’s second-half collapse in Saturday’s 28-27 loss to Washington State was not exactly a strong endorsement for a coaching staff that has a lot to prove this season. Offensively, the Utes produced only a field goal after halftime, and that came via a short drive that started at the WSU 43-yard line after a fumble recovery. Defensively, the Utes gave up three touchdowns in the second half — two on long drives and the game-winner on an 81-yard pass play. Coach Mike Leach and the rest of the Coug... 58467853@www.sltrib.com Mon, 29 Sep 2014 15:43:47 MDT Kragthorpe: Utes’ collapse erases season’s promising start (Video) http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58462980-89/utes-utah-season-game.html.csp Utah receiver Dres Anderson broke free, and the Utes seemingly were about to salvage their Pac-12 opener Saturday night. And then he dropped the ball. Amazing, how the look and feel of Utah’s football season could change so suddenly. In a 28-27 loss to Washington State, the Utes went from dominating the first quarter in every phase of the game to struggling offensively and eventually falling apart defensively. So what looked like a sure 4-0 overall start leading into a Pac-12 South showdown v... Utah receiver Dres Anderson broke free, and the Utes seemingly were about to salvage their Pac-12 opener Saturday night. And then he dropped the ball. Amazing, how the look and feel of Utah’s football season could change so suddenly. In a 28-27 loss to Washington State, the Utes went from dominating the first quarter in every phase of the game to struggling offensively and eventually falling apart defensively. So what looked like a sure 4-0 overall start leading into a Pac-12 South showdown v... 58462980@www.sltrib.com Sun, 28 Sep 2014 17:28:06 MDT Kragthorpe: Utes, WSU Cougars have staged memorable scenes http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58458046-89/utes-cougars-utah-wsu.html.csp Judging by consistently competitive games, Utah’s series with Colorado has been the best matchup in the Utes’ Pac-12 era. In terms of memorable scenes, during and after the games, nothing comes close to Utah’s battles with Washington State. The Utes and Cougars will meet again Saturday at Rice-Eccles Stadium. That’s where WSU coach Mike Leach publicly embarrassed his offensive lineman in 2012. After a 49-6 defeat, Leach made each of them appear in a postgame interview session. Last November, the... Judging by consistently competitive games, Utah’s series with Colorado has been the best matchup in the Utes’ Pac-12 era. In terms of memorable scenes, during and after the games, nothing comes close to Utah’s battles with Washington State. The Utes and Cougars will meet again Saturday at Rice-Eccles Stadium. That’s where WSU coach Mike Leach publicly embarrassed his offensive lineman in 2012. After a 49-6 defeat, Leach made each of them appear in a postgame interview session. Last November, the... 58458046@www.sltrib.com Fri, 26 Sep 2014 16:07:12 MDT Kragthorpe: Utah golfers populating PGA Tour http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/sports/58449471-77/tour-utah-pga-blair.html.csp The Utah Junior Golf Association can claim to have produced a foursome of current PGA Tour players, and that’s not even counting a Ryder Cup contestant. “Don’t forget Rory McIlroy,” said Jeff Thurman, the UJGA’s executive director. Well, it already is a slight stretch for the alumni list to include Scott Pinckney, whose family housed McIlroy in Orem one summer when the boys were 11 and later moved to Arizona. Yet for the first time, Utah will have three high school graduates, all born and raise... The Utah Junior Golf Association can claim to have produced a foursome of current PGA Tour players, and that’s not even counting a Ryder Cup contestant. “Don’t forget Rory McIlroy,” said Jeff Thurman, the UJGA’s executive director. Well, it already is a slight stretch for the alumni list to include Scott Pinckney, whose family housed McIlroy in Orem one summer when the boys were 11 and later moved to Arizona. Yet for the first time, Utah will have three high school graduates, all born and raise... 58449471@www.sltrib.com Wed, 24 Sep 2014 22:55:13 MDT Kragthorpe: Utes better equipped than ever for Pac-12 play (Video) http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58442328-89/pac-utah-utes-state.html.csp Judging by their nonconference performance, the Utah Utes have raised the standards of the 2014 football season. Whether or not that becomes a problem is up to them. Merely becoming bowl-eligible is no longer an acceptable gauge for the Utes, because of what they’ve done against Idaho State, Fresno State and Michigan. They need only three wins in nine Pac-12 games to qualify for a bowl bid, and they certainly seem to have advanced beyond that stage. Five conference wins would be monumental for ... Judging by their nonconference performance, the Utah Utes have raised the standards of the 2014 football season. Whether or not that becomes a problem is up to them. Merely becoming bowl-eligible is no longer an acceptable gauge for the Utes, because of what they’ve done against Idaho State, Fresno State and Michigan. They need only three wins in nine Pac-12 games to qualify for a bowl bid, and they certainly seem to have advanced beyond that stage. Five conference wins would be monumental for ... 58442328@www.sltrib.com Mon, 22 Sep 2014 17:21:43 MDT Kragthorpe: Ex-Ute Steve Smith steps up in Ravens’ victory http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/sports/58439412-77/smith-flacco-ravens-baltimore.html.csp Cleveland After making an eventual game-winning play Sunday, Baltimore receiver Steve Smith acted like it was just another routine catch for him. That’s because he celebrates them all, with equal zeal. The former University of Utah star’s fifth reception of the game and 854th catch of his NFL career led to Justin Tucker’s 32-yard field goal as time expired in the Ravens’ 23-21 victory over Cleveland at FirstEnergy Stadium. This was standard stuff for Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco, known for h... Cleveland After making an eventual game-winning play Sunday, Baltimore receiver Steve Smith acted like it was just another routine catch for him. That’s because he celebrates them all, with equal zeal. The former University of Utah star’s fifth reception of the game and 854th catch of his NFL career led to Justin Tucker’s 32-yard field goal as time expired in the Ravens’ 23-21 victory over Cleveland at FirstEnergy Stadium. This was standard stuff for Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco, known for h... 58439412@www.sltrib.com Mon, 22 Sep 2014 09:38:18 MDT Kragthorpe: Ute defense comes through when it counts http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58437338-89/utah-michigan-defense-ute.html.csp Ann Arbor, Mich. As the fourth quarter unfolded and heavy rain fell Saturday evening, tens of thousands of Michigan fans dressed in yellow headed for the exits. Their departures made a swath of red appear more distinct in the south end zone, 90-plus rows above the field. Those folks from Utah were not going anywhere, until they were ordered to evacuate. Same story with the Ute defense. Utah’s defenders were at their best when it counted in a 26-10 victory — rarely dominating, but always deliv... Ann Arbor, Mich. As the fourth quarter unfolded and heavy rain fell Saturday evening, tens of thousands of Michigan fans dressed in yellow headed for the exits. Their departures made a swath of red appear more distinct in the south end zone, 90-plus rows above the field. Those folks from Utah were not going anywhere, until they were ordered to evacuate. Same story with the Ute defense. Utah’s defenders were at their best when it counted in a 26-10 victory — rarely dominating, but always deliv... 58437338@www.sltrib.com Sun, 21 Sep 2014 15:12:55 MDT Kragthorpe: Road win is next item on Utes’ checklist (Video) http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58423669-89/utes-road-game-utah.html.csp In the first two games of the football season, the Utah Utes have done just about everything that anyone could have wanted. It is fair to demand more from them, starting Saturday afternoon at Michigan. The Utes need to intercept a pass, win a road game and build some momentum for the Pac-12 schedule. None of that is asking too much. In so many ways, this is a terrific opportunity for Utah. Michigan features an iconic venue with 100,000-plus fans, a brand-name program with a lot of history and, ... In the first two games of the football season, the Utah Utes have done just about everything that anyone could have wanted. It is fair to demand more from them, starting Saturday afternoon at Michigan. The Utes need to intercept a pass, win a road game and build some momentum for the Pac-12 schedule. None of that is asking too much. In so many ways, this is a terrific opportunity for Utah. Michigan features an iconic venue with 100,000-plus fans, a brand-name program with a lot of history and, ... 58423669@www.sltrib.com Wed, 17 Sep 2014 21:49:07 MDT Kragthorpe: Pac-12 South’s elite teams showing weaknesses http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58421093-89/usc-south-teams-ucla.html.csp USC lost to Boston College, with the Trojans’ defense being exploited. UCLA needed a series of clutch plays to overcome Texas. Arizona State allowed a bunch of yards to Colorado. The top half of the Pac-12 South appears vulnerable, even if those three teams are ranked No. 17 or higher in the AP Top 25. Much more evidence about Utah is needed for anyone to make a case that the Utes can contend in the South, but it is fair to say those divisional opponents look less intimidating than they did befo... USC lost to Boston College, with the Trojans’ defense being exploited. UCLA needed a series of clutch plays to overcome Texas. Arizona State allowed a bunch of yards to Colorado. The top half of the Pac-12 South appears vulnerable, even if those three teams are ranked No. 17 or higher in the AP Top 25. Much more evidence about Utah is needed for anyone to make a case that the Utes can contend in the South, but it is fair to say those divisional opponents look less intimidating than they did befo... 58421093@www.sltrib.com Tue, 16 Sep 2014 18:40:05 MDT