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Utah defensive coordinator talks about Tech's option

Published December 29, 2011 10:36 am

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2011, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

It was the coordinators' time to face media members today during the round of Sun Bowl press conferences. There wasn't much earth-shattering news to report from Utah's side as defensive coordinator Kalani Sitake reiterated the Utes are prepared for Georgia Tech's option thanks in part to past experiences against Air Force. "It comes down to all 11 guys on the field doing their part," Sitake said. "It will be a challenge, Georgia Tech has a lot of great athletes at all different positions so it will be a huge task for us but we are excited about the opportunity. It's one of those things, like going against Air Force,the scheme requires discipline and focus. They play tough football and bang around so it's a little bit of old school. It will be fun and challenging for us to step up and see what happens." Crucial in stopping the option for the Utes is the play of the safeties. In that respect, having Brian Blechen playing both linebacker and safety this year will help the Utes give Georgia Tech several different looks, Sitake said. "He has a lot of speed so he can cover receivers," Sitake said. "But he's physical too so we can do a lot of different things with our personnel." Offensively, Norm Chow said running back John White will be key as always and said what has impressed him the most is White's durability. "He sprained that ankle in the last game but otherwise he has done a terrific job, especially with the durability part of it because he's not at all a big guy," Chow said. Chow repeated that his decision to leave the Utes for the Hawaii job was a hard decision to make and that he is enjoying his final days with the Utes. "I need them more than they need me right now," he said. However, Chow has no desire to maintain a tie with the Utes by scheduling Utah in the future. "No please no," he said. "Not unless Kalani and those other guys aren't there." Chow said offensive lineman Miles Mason, who hasn't practiced this week due to an elbow injury, isn't expected to play. Chow repeated his focus is on Utah's game against Georgia Tech and everything that he must do as Hawaii's head coach is on the back burner. However, he apparently has made two hires as Lewis Powell and Phil Rauscher, two administrative assistants with Utah, are expected to join his Hawaii staff. No other coaches or assistants from the Utes are expected to leave Utah with Chow.