Utes need some help at running back
Published: September 17, 2012 05:22AM
Updated: September 17, 2012 05:22AM
Utah coach Kyle Whittingham joked after his team beat BYU the Utes should be 4-1, given the number of times the Utes had to win the game at the end with all the craziness that went on.
That game might have been worth a few wins in confidence too. Even though BYU was favored and the Utes were short a few key players, losing that game certainly would have lowered the Utes' confidence a few more notches as they head into Pac-12 play.
Now they head into the heart of their schedule knowing they can win big games with Jon Hays and without running back John White (ankle), safety Brian Blechen (suspension) and safety Eric Rowe (safety).
The good news is the Utes should have all those guys back this week.
The one really disappointing area in Utah's offense Saturday was the run game where the Utes managed just 49 yards on 35 carries. Some credit goes to BYU's defense, but the Utes are supposed to have their deepest lineup of backs in years. They didn't show it Saturday.
Freshman Jarrell Oliver got the most carries, finishing with 11 rushes for 24 yards but he got a little banged up.
Lucky Radley, a little back who has one of the team's biggest personalities, had nine carries for 22 yards.
The biggest disappointment was junior college transfer Kelvin York, who had four carries for seven yards. I can remember when the Utes signed the former USC-bound player they were extremely excited, believing he was going to be a big-time back. He has had a lot of chances to prove he could live up to that billing, but so far he has struggled.
Another transfer, sophomore James Poole, didn't get any carries.
The Utes have talked about using their tight ends more in the run game this year and we might see that this week, particularly if White's ankle is still sore.
Regardless, the Utes definitely need some help at running back...paging Harvey Langi...
- Lya Wodraska