Utah Utes - The Salt Lake Tribune http://www.sltrib.com/Utes 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 This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.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) Utah football: Utes name Travis Wilson as starter at QB (with video) http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58541406-89/wilson-utah-quarterback-thompson.html.csp Once again, Travis Wilson is Utah’s starting quarterback. For the time being. The latest Utah depth chart — in something of a surprise, given Kyle Whittingham’s comment Saturday that his starting quarterback would likely remain a secret — shows Wilson’s name in bold atop that of junior Kendal Thompson. “I just wanted less questions for me during the week,” Whittingham explained at Monday’s news conference. “I kind of played that strategy game last week by not announcing, but we figured that this... Once again, Travis Wilson is Utah’s starting quarterback. For the time being. The latest Utah depth chart — in something of a surprise, given Kyle Whittingham’s comment Saturday that his starting quarterback would likely remain a secret — shows Wilson’s name in bold atop that of junior Kendal Thompson. “I just wanted less questions for me during the week,” Whittingham explained at Monday’s news conference. “I kind of played that strategy game last week by not announcing, but we figured that this... <img src="http://mngislctrib.112.2O7.net/b/ss/mngislctrib/1/H.17--NS/0?&pageName=RSS" height="1" width="1" border="0" alt=""/> 58541406@www.sltrib.com Mon, 20 Oct 2014 17:09:54 MDT Kragthorpe: Utes succeeding in Pac-12, despite QB changes http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58540689-89/utes-state-utah-season.html.csp Dave Christensen arrived on the University of Utah campus, and the Utes’ quarterbacking carousel started. It has not stopped. The series of switches began in October 2009 when Christensen (now the Utes’ offensive coordinator) brought his Wyoming Cowboys to Rice-Eccles Stadium. Most of the changes have been due to injury, but that one was performance-based — just like Utah’s repeated substitutions this month. Jordan Wynn came out of redshirt status to replace Terrance Cain at halftime of that “B... Dave Christensen arrived on the University of Utah campus, and the Utes’ quarterbacking carousel started. It has not stopped. The series of switches began in October 2009 when Christensen (now the Utes’ offensive coordinator) brought his Wyoming Cowboys to Rice-Eccles Stadium. Most of the changes have been due to injury, but that one was performance-based — just like Utah’s repeated substitutions this month. Jordan Wynn came out of redshirt status to replace Terrance Cain at halftime of that “B... 58540689@www.sltrib.com Mon, 20 Oct 2014 16:39:02 MDT Utah football: No. 19 Utes have won ugly, but sit pretty in Pac-12 http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/sports/58538359-77/utah-game-utes-per.html.csp The mission from the beginning of the season has been simple: Get to a bowl game. Inside and outside the program, six was the magic number. Well, Utah is poised to cross that bar this Saturday, if it can get a win over a USC team that’s been one of the Utes’ banes for years. But who is thinking about six wins when the Utes are ranked No. 19 and one of four one-loss teams in the Pac-12? It’s true that Thursday’s 29-23 double-overtime victory over Oregon State was an exercise in survival, an ugly ... The mission from the beginning of the season has been simple: Get to a bowl game. Inside and outside the program, six was the magic number. Well, Utah is poised to cross that bar this Saturday, if it can get a win over a USC team that’s been one of the Utes’ banes for years. But who is thinking about six wins when the Utes are ranked No. 19 and one of four one-loss teams in the Pac-12? It’s true that Thursday’s 29-23 double-overtime victory over Oregon State was an exercise in survival, an ugly ... 58538359@www.sltrib.com Mon, 20 Oct 2014 11:17:46 MDT Utah volleyball: Utes take No. 1 Stanford to four sets in loss http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58538940-89/stanford-kills-utes-utah.html.csp Stanford took the floor with four preseason All-Pac-12 first teamers, 26 straight regular season wins and the nation’s No. 1 ranking. That didn’t change Sunday afternoon at the Huntsman Center. Well, except that they now have 27 straight regular season wins. But the Utes — smaller, less experienced and just 2-6 in the Pac-12 — made the Cardinal sweat. Senior middle blocker Bailey Bateman had nine kills on just 17 attempts, freshman hitter Adora Anae registered 12 kills, and senior Chelsea Schofi... Stanford took the floor with four preseason All-Pac-12 first teamers, 26 straight regular season wins and the nation’s No. 1 ranking. That didn’t change Sunday afternoon at the Huntsman Center. Well, except that they now have 27 straight regular season wins. But the Utes — smaller, less experienced and just 2-6 in the Pac-12 — made the Cardinal sweat. Senior middle blocker Bailey Bateman had nine kills on just 17 attempts, freshman hitter Adora Anae registered 12 kills, and senior Chelsea Schofi... 58538940@www.sltrib.com Sun, 19 Oct 2014 18:28:02 MDT Utah football: Utes rise to No. 19 in AP, coaches polls http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/sports/58538292-77/poll-utah-utes-arizona.html.csp A modest rise, but a rise nonetheless. Following the best Pac-12 start since the Utes joined the conference, Utah is now ranked at 19th in both the AP Top 25 Poll and the Amway Coaches Poll. The Utes rose one spot in the AP Poll and four spots in the Coaches Poll. Utah looked sluggish in the first few quarters against Oregon State on Thursday, but a dominant performance by Devontae Booker set the Utes up for an exciting 29-23 victory in double overtime. The Utes are 2-1 in Pac-12 play this sea... A modest rise, but a rise nonetheless. Following the best Pac-12 start since the Utes joined the conference, Utah is now ranked at 19th in both the AP Top 25 Poll and the Amway Coaches Poll. The Utes rose one spot in the AP Poll and four spots in the Coaches Poll. Utah looked sluggish in the first few quarters against Oregon State on Thursday, but a dominant performance by Devontae Booker set the Utes up for an exciting 29-23 victory in double overtime. The Utes are 2-1 in Pac-12 play this sea... 58538292@www.sltrib.com Sun, 19 Oct 2014 13:41:51 MDT Wilson or Thompson? Utah’s starting QB up in the air http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58535564-89/thompson-wilson-utah-game.html.csp Time and again — most recently outside the visitors’ locker room after nipping Oregon State in Corvallis late Thursday — Utah coach Kyle Whittingham has said he doesn’t favor a two-quarterback system. So what, then, are we supposed to call this? Against UCLA, Travis Wilson started, stalled and stepped aside for Kendal Thompson. Against Oregon State, the roles were reversed, with Wilson retaking the reins at halftime. And when it was over, and the 5-1 Utes had captured their second consecutive Pa... Time and again — most recently outside the visitors’ locker room after nipping Oregon State in Corvallis late Thursday — Utah coach Kyle Whittingham has said he doesn’t favor a two-quarterback system. So what, then, are we supposed to call this? Against UCLA, Travis Wilson started, stalled and stepped aside for Kendal Thompson. Against Oregon State, the roles were reversed, with Wilson retaking the reins at halftime. And when it was over, and the 5-1 Utes had captured their second consecutive Pa... 58535564@www.sltrib.com Sun, 19 Oct 2014 00:16:54 MDT Utah football: Whittingham, Utes going to the wall to win http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58533066-89/utah-win-utes-whittingham.html.csp Corvallis, Ore. • For a team that just won its fifth game in six tries, the Utah Utes sure maintain an air of unpredictability. Who starts at quarterback? Open to interpretation. Changes at receiver, on the offensive line? It could happen. Will Tevin Carter or Jacoby Hale play? Wait and see. Kyle Whittingham has a blanket explanation for all the decisions he and his coaching staff make, one he reiterated as the Utes were packing up to fly back to Salt Lake City with another narrow victory: “What... Corvallis, Ore. • For a team that just won its fifth game in six tries, the Utah Utes sure maintain an air of unpredictability. Who starts at quarterback? Open to interpretation. Changes at receiver, on the offensive line? It could happen. Will Tevin Carter or Jacoby Hale play? Wait and see. Kyle Whittingham has a blanket explanation for all the decisions he and his coaching staff make, one he reiterated as the Utes were packing up to fly back to Salt Lake City with another narrow victory: “What... 58533066@www.sltrib.com Fri, 17 Oct 2014 23:58:36 MDT Utah football: Utes defeat Beavers in double overtime (with video) http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/sports/58530272-77/utah-yards-booker-state.html.csp Corvallis, Ore. • Last year’s game, it was not. Ute fans who still wince at the memory of a 51-48 overtime loss at Rice-Eccles Stadium may not associate these two in years to come. In 2013, Sean Mannion and Travis Wilson combined for 852 yards in a spirited, exciting back-and-forth that ended with heartbreak for the Utes. This time around, junior linebacker Gionni Paul picked off Sean Mannion’s very first pass, Kendal Thompson started in lieu of Travis Wilson before coaches switched back, and hi... Corvallis, Ore. • Last year’s game, it was not. Ute fans who still wince at the memory of a 51-48 overtime loss at Rice-Eccles Stadium may not associate these two in years to come. In 2013, Sean Mannion and Travis Wilson combined for 852 yards in a spirited, exciting back-and-forth that ended with heartbreak for the Utes. This time around, junior linebacker Gionni Paul picked off Sean Mannion’s very first pass, Kendal Thompson started in lieu of Travis Wilson before coaches switched back, and hi... 58530272@www.sltrib.com Fri, 17 Oct 2014 13:20:00 MDT Utah football: Booker drives Utes’ victory march (with video) http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58530671-89/booker-utah-game-ball.html.csp Corvallis, Ore. • Every Utah-biased viewer shared the same thought: Just give him the ball. They saw it throughout the game: Devontae Booker hurdling a defender. Devontae Booker breaking a tackle. Devontae Booker getting yards on a night when no one else could. Give him the ball. Give him the ball. He might’ve said it himself once or twice during the game. “I don’t know if they listened,” Booker said, shrugging his shoulders. “I guess they did.” Maybe the Utes coaching heard the collective screa... Corvallis, Ore. • Every Utah-biased viewer shared the same thought: Just give him the ball. They saw it throughout the game: Devontae Booker hurdling a defender. Devontae Booker breaking a tackle. Devontae Booker getting yards on a night when no one else could. Give him the ball. Give him the ball. He might’ve said it himself once or twice during the game. “I don’t know if they listened,” Booker said, shrugging his shoulders. “I guess they did.” Maybe the Utes coaching heard the collective screa... 58530671@www.sltrib.com Fri, 17 Oct 2014 09:33:46 MDT Utah football: Senior free safety Tevin Carter misses trip to Corvallis http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/sports/58530653-77/utah-booker-carter-game.html.csp Corvallis, Ore. • Every Utah-biased viewer shared the same thought: Just give him the ball. They saw it throughout the game: Devontae Booker hurdling a defender. Devontae Booker breaking a tackle. Devontae Booker getting yards on a night when no one else could. Give him the ball. Give him the ball. He might’ve said it himself once or twice. “I don’t know if they listened,” Booker said, shrugging his shoulders. “I guess they did.” Maybe the Utes coaching heard the collective screaming across the ... Corvallis, Ore. • Every Utah-biased viewer shared the same thought: Just give him the ball. They saw it throughout the game: Devontae Booker hurdling a defender. Devontae Booker breaking a tackle. Devontae Booker getting yards on a night when no one else could. Give him the ball. Give him the ball. He might’ve said it himself once or twice. “I don’t know if they listened,” Booker said, shrugging his shoulders. “I guess they did.” Maybe the Utes coaching heard the collective screaming across the ... 58530653@www.sltrib.com Fri, 17 Oct 2014 00:26:30 MDT Analysis: Utah-Oregon State Position Preview http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58517587-89/utah-utes-season-yards.html.csp The Pac-12 race is wide open and as unpredictable as ever. Coming off a huge upset of UCLA and a bye week, the Utes are in prime position to throw themselves into the chaos that is the Pac-12 South race. Next up is Oregon State, a team that isn’t at the top of the Pac-12 North, but still remains a viable threat. Sean Mannion is having a down year compared with last season, but anytime he’s under center the Beavers will have a chance to win. Meanwhile, the Utes find themselves embroiled in a quar... The Pac-12 race is wide open and as unpredictable as ever. Coming off a huge upset of UCLA and a bye week, the Utes are in prime position to throw themselves into the chaos that is the Pac-12 South race. Next up is Oregon State, a team that isn’t at the top of the Pac-12 North, but still remains a viable threat. Sean Mannion is having a down year compared with last season, but anytime he’s under center the Beavers will have a chance to win. Meanwhile, the Utes find themselves embroiled in a quar... 58517587@www.sltrib.com Thu, 16 Oct 2014 15:40:36 MDT Utah football: Utes want to outgrow underdog tag vs. Beavers http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58524527-89/utah-utes-oregon-pac.html.csp The words rang in their ears as the Utes stormed out into the Rose Bowl. The words were Kyle Whittingham’s. “Time to go slay us another giant, baby!” he had said, as they gathered their hands in a huddle. “Time to go slay us another giant!” The role of underdog is an intoxicating one for this Utah football team that is coming off two losing seasons, was picked to finish fifth in the Pac-12 South and dropped its first league game against a team many expected it to beat. The Utes’ natural rallying... The words rang in their ears as the Utes stormed out into the Rose Bowl. The words were Kyle Whittingham’s. “Time to go slay us another giant, baby!” he had said, as they gathered their hands in a huddle. “Time to go slay us another giant!” The role of underdog is an intoxicating one for this Utah football team that is coming off two losing seasons, was picked to finish fifth in the Pac-12 South and dropped its first league game against a team many expected it to beat. The Utes’ natural rallying... 58524527@www.sltrib.com Thu, 16 Oct 2014 11:33:21 MDT Utah football: Bingham’s Pritchard brothers face Utes again — in Corvallis http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58520925-89/iona-brother-baker-pritchard.html.csp In an alternate universe, Baker Pritchard might have become a Ute. Iona Pritchard is hoping for the fifth time to finally beat them. The brothers transferred from BYU to Oregon State in the offseason — Baker because he felt the 4-3 defensive scheme at OSU better suited his abilities, and Iona because he wanted to spend his final year of eligibility playing alongside his brother. Now, like Fresno State running back Josh Quezada in Week Two, the Bingham High products get an extra shot at their ol... In an alternate universe, Baker Pritchard might have become a Ute. Iona Pritchard is hoping for the fifth time to finally beat them. The brothers transferred from BYU to Oregon State in the offseason — Baker because he felt the 4-3 defensive scheme at OSU better suited his abilities, and Iona because he wanted to spend his final year of eligibility playing alongside his brother. Now, like Fresno State running back Josh Quezada in Week Two, the Bingham High products get an extra shot at their ol... 58520925@www.sltrib.com Wed, 15 Oct 2014 22:47:06 MDT Kragthorpe: Seven’s now the number for Utes, Whittingham http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58523510-89/whittingham-utes-utah-games.html.csp There’s a 99.8 percent chance of Utah losing one or more games during what’s left of this season, according to ESPN’s Football Power Index. The likelihood of Ute coach Kyle Whittingham receiving a contract extension in December is 98.9 percent, by my calculation. Those other possibilities — the 0.2 percent and the 1.1 percent — are just enough to make things interesting. The blessing and curse of Utah’s status in the Pac-12 in 2014 is that no opponent appears overwhelming and no game presents i... There’s a 99.8 percent chance of Utah losing one or more games during what’s left of this season, according to ESPN’s Football Power Index. The likelihood of Ute coach Kyle Whittingham receiving a contract extension in December is 98.9 percent, by my calculation. Those other possibilities — the 0.2 percent and the 1.1 percent — are just enough to make things interesting. The blessing and curse of Utah’s status in the Pac-12 in 2014 is that no opponent appears overwhelming and no game presents i... 58523510@www.sltrib.com Wed, 15 Oct 2014 20:37:15 MDT Utah basketball: Rebounding in focus for Runnin’ Utes http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58526257-89/utah-krystkowiak-lights-board.html.csp Here’s a euphemism worth remembering: “conditioning incentives.” The Runnin’ Utes are highly invested in improving their rebounding this year, which was just about average during conference play last season. They tally up rebounding totals during practice, especially among the big men. For the guy who is lagging behind, who isn’t going up for every possible board … well, that’s where incentives kick in. It changes day-to-day: push-ups, running stairs or anything else that serves to motivate Uta... Here’s a euphemism worth remembering: “conditioning incentives.” The Runnin’ Utes are highly invested in improving their rebounding this year, which was just about average during conference play last season. They tally up rebounding totals during practice, especially among the big men. For the guy who is lagging behind, who isn’t going up for every possible board … well, that’s where incentives kick in. It changes day-to-day: push-ups, running stairs or anything else that serves to motivate Uta... 58526257@www.sltrib.com Wed, 15 Oct 2014 18:20:19 MDT Monson: Utah is the best in the country at ... don’t change that dial http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58520362-89/teams-special-utah-phillips.html.csp Utah may be ranked No. 20 in the latest AP poll, but there are a couple of areas where the Utes rank No. 1 in college football’s metrics. One of them: They are the best in the country at … special teams. Stop. Don’t bail for that other story guessing who the starting quarterback will be. This third-phase thing is a lot more important than you think. Not only are Utah’s special teams ranked first this season, according to analytics concocted by ESPN, they are the best college special teams since... Utah may be ranked No. 20 in the latest AP poll, but there are a couple of areas where the Utes rank No. 1 in college football’s metrics. One of them: They are the best in the country at … special teams. Stop. Don’t bail for that other story guessing who the starting quarterback will be. This third-phase thing is a lot more important than you think. Not only are Utah’s special teams ranked first this season, according to analytics concocted by ESPN, they are the best college special teams since... 58520362@www.sltrib.com Wed, 15 Oct 2014 09:25:07 MDT Utah football: If Tevin Carter’s out, responsibility falls to freshman safeties http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58520250-89/godfrey-utah-blechen-carter.html.csp In Brian Blechen’s first college game, he picked off a sideline throw from Tino Sunseri to set up the game-winning field goal against No. 15 Pitt. He instantly became a Utah fan favorite. But on his first college play, “I blew my assignment totally,” he said Monday. Back then, Blechen could look to then-senior Justin Taplin-Ross to set him straight. Now, true freshmen Andre Godfrey and Marcus Williams turn to Blechen. Both have been thrust into duty by the sudden absences of hobbled senior Tevin... In Brian Blechen’s first college game, he picked off a sideline throw from Tino Sunseri to set up the game-winning field goal against No. 15 Pitt. He instantly became a Utah fan favorite. But on his first college play, “I blew my assignment totally,” he said Monday. Back then, Blechen could look to then-senior Justin Taplin-Ross to set him straight. Now, true freshmen Andre Godfrey and Marcus Williams turn to Blechen. Both have been thrust into duty by the sudden absences of hobbled senior Tevin... 58520250@www.sltrib.com Tue, 14 Oct 2014 23:28:14 MDT Pac-12 football: Road success leaves coaches lost for explanation http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58521484-89/road-coaches-state-teams.html.csp Road success leaves coaches lost for explanation The Pac-12 is home to some large and loud venues: The Coliseum. The Rose Bowl. Autzen Stadium. Husky Stadium. If there’s an intimidation factor that goes along with that, it hasn’t been apparent this year. Road teams are all the rage in the Pac-12, with visiting teams accumulating a 14-4 record in conference play this year. Following back-to-back losses at home, UCLA coach Jim Mora has had a long time to think about why that might be. “I can’t pu... Road success leaves coaches lost for explanation The Pac-12 is home to some large and loud venues: The Coliseum. The Rose Bowl. Autzen Stadium. Husky Stadium. If there’s an intimidation factor that goes along with that, it hasn’t been apparent this year. Road teams are all the rage in the Pac-12, with visiting teams accumulating a 14-4 record in conference play this year. Following back-to-back losses at home, UCLA coach Jim Mora has had a long time to think about why that might be. “I can’t pu... 58521484@www.sltrib.com Tue, 14 Oct 2014 15:58:01 MDT Kragthorpe: ‘Mayhem’ will shape Pac-12 South race http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58520904-89/arizona-usc-state-case.html.csp Glory, Colorado. The Buffaloes’ fight song captures the only bit of consolation for anyone trying to sort out the Pac-12 South football competition, as of mid-October. Colorado is improving, but not worth worrying about in this context. Everybody else remains in the discussion. “I just think there’s a lot of mayhem [to come] in college football, in general,” said UCLA coach Jim Mora, whose team has two league losses. “I just think it’s going to be wild. It’s awesome for the fans. It’s chaotic f... Glory, Colorado. The Buffaloes’ fight song captures the only bit of consolation for anyone trying to sort out the Pac-12 South football competition, as of mid-October. Colorado is improving, but not worth worrying about in this context. Everybody else remains in the discussion. “I just think there’s a lot of mayhem [to come] in college football, in general,” said UCLA coach Jim Mora, whose team has two league losses. “I just think it’s going to be wild. It’s awesome for the fans. It’s chaotic f... 58520904@www.sltrib.com Tue, 14 Oct 2014 13:47:14 MDT Utah football: Utes expecting same Mannion as last year (with video) http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/utes/58517181-89/utah-yards-mannion-utes.html.csp In this week’s edition of “The Pac-12 is really, really hard,” Utah must beat a 4-1 team with a potential NFL quarterback because this is likely one of its best remaining chances for victory. At No. 20, Utah ranks as high as it has in the AP poll since December 2010, but nonetheless is favored by just three in Corvallis on Thursday night. One good reason: Utah hasn’t beaten Oregon State in Corvallis since 1991, when current cornerbacks coach Sharrieff Shah recorded 12 tackles, four sacks and tw... In this week’s edition of “The Pac-12 is really, really hard,” Utah must beat a 4-1 team with a potential NFL quarterback because this is likely one of its best remaining chances for victory. At No. 20, Utah ranks as high as it has in the AP poll since December 2010, but nonetheless is favored by just three in Corvallis on Thursday night. One good reason: Utah hasn’t beaten Oregon State in Corvallis since 1991, when current cornerbacks coach Sharrieff Shah recorded 12 tackles, four sacks and tw... 58517181@www.sltrib.com Tue, 14 Oct 2014 08:48:38 MDT