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Utah football: Utes to address 2013 hopes at media day

Published July 25, 2013 11:19 pm

College athletics • Utah unlikely to receive favorable ranking in Pac-12 South division.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Los Angeles • Thanks to a bunch of flight issues, Utah football players Trevor Reilly and Jake Murphy arrived late at their scheduled Pac-12 media day events on Thursday in Los Angeles.

Hopefully their travel troubles aren't a sign of things to come for the Utes, who have endured several route changes and road blocks in their two seasons as a member of the Pac-12 and would welcome a season without much drama.

The Utes, who went 5-7 in 2012, failing to qualify for a bowl game for the first time since 2002, will address their expectations and hopes for the 2013 season when the Pac-12 media blitz continues Friday at Sony Pictures Studio in Culver City.

Utah reports for camp on Aug. 4.

Friday's media event will be streamed live on Pac-12.com starting at 11 a.m. MT.

Utah coach Kyle Whittingham, who spent Thursday in ESPN's "Car Wash," with other Pac-12 coaches, will join Reilly and Murphy at 11:20 a.m for their media session.

Friday's event will begin with commissioner Larry Scott's media session at 9 a.m. It's expected he will address several topics such as the conference's push for more media exposure in Asia, expansion, NCAA reform and the playoff system that will replace the Bowl Championship Series in 2014.

While those topics are all well and good, Utah fans probably have more immediate concerns, such as Utah's chances for improving their record in 2013.

The Utes, who will find out their preseason conference ranking when the media poll is released Friday, expect they won't be among the favorites to win their division given their record in 2012 and a more challenging schedule in 2013.

However, Utah is accustomed to such predictions and often uses them as motivation. The 2013 season shouldn't be any different, with players and coaches believing they have the chemistry and talent to be the surprise of the South, if not the league.

The Utes have such confidence in part to the arrival of Dennis Erickson, an offensive mastermind who will share coordinating duties with Brian Johnson, along with the prospect of making it through a season with a healthy quarterback.

Travis Wilson, who took over in 2012 when Jordan Wynn was forced to retire due to recurring injuries, had a solid spring and will handle the quarterback duties.