Utah football: Utah's offensive line improving
Utah coach Kyle Whittingham had a different take on his offensive line Monday, praising the group rather than being critical of them.
After five games he feels he finally has a line with which the Utes can work. After giving up eight sacks combined against BYU and Arizona State, the Utes didn't give up any to USC.
"We have five guys who played well and can develop with more continuity and consistency, and the group can play together the rest of the season," he said.
A big factor in the improvement was the play of senior Miles Mason.
Mason started in 11 games in 2011 but struggled so much this year that he dropped off the two-deep chart altogether.
However, his solid play against USC has earned him a chance to start at right guard against the Bruins on Saturday.
"The light switch went on with Miles and he really stepped up to the plate and played well," Whittingham said.
Sophomore backup corner Wykie Freeman, who left the Arizona State game with a leg injury, had surgery and is out for the remainder of the season, Whittingham said.
Former starter Moe Lee is listed as Ryan Lacy's backup.
Offensive lineman Vyncent Jones will miss the UCLA game with a knee injury that also prevented him from playing against USC.
The Pac-12 has announced Utah's game at Oregon State on Oct. 20 will kick off at 8:30 p.m. MDT.
The game will be televised either on ESPN or ESPN2, which will be determined after this weekend.
The Utes will face a new quarterback in that game since Oregon State coach Mike Riley announced Monday that starting quarterback Sean Mannion injured a knee against Washington State and is out indefinitely.
Junior Cody Vaz will start this weekend against BYU.
The 6-foot-1, 198-pound Vaz played in five games in 2010 but did not play last year.
Former Utah quarterback Jordan Wynn will participate in two ESPN2 studio segments Tuesday. He will appear on "College Football Daily" at 11 a.m. MDT and will be a guest analyst on "The Experts" at 12:30 p.m.