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Matt Piper and Kyle Goon cover University of Utah sports teams for The Salt Lake Tribune. Matt Piper is on twitter at @matthew_piper, Kyle Goon is on twitter at @kylegoon

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Former ASU coach Erickson interviews for position with Utes

Utah coach Kyle Whittingham said a few weeks ago he was willing to move coaches around on his staff to make room for a new hire. He might just be making room for one of the legends in the game.

Former Arizona State coach Dennis Erickson confirmed he interviewed with Whittingham on Tuesday.

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"I enjoyed it," he said before boarding a plane to Phoenix. "They have good people there and a good staff, obviously Kyle has a good staff there so we will see."

Erickson said no offer was made.

"There is nothing yet," he said. "We'll see what happens."

After several stints in the college and pro ranks, Erickson most recently coached at Arizona State from 2007-11 where he went 10-3 in his first season, but failed to win more than six games in his final four years. He was fired on Nov. 28, 2011 with a final record of 6-7.

If Erickson joins Utah's staff, he could fill a role similar to the one Norm Chow had in 2011, when he served as offensive coordinator.

Brian Johnson was promoted to offensive coordinator last year when Chow left for Hawaii, but Whittingham wasn't happy with the way the offense developed last year and might not pass up the chance to hire a mentor such as Erickson.

Erickson often is credited with popularizing the spread offense and aggressive attacking formations. Such knowledge could help the Utes solve their offensive woes as they failed to be "explosive," last year, in the words of Whittingham.

The Utes ranked at or near the bottom of the Pac-12 in the major offensive categories in 2012, averaging just 26.7 points last year and 324.4 yards of offense.

An added benefit to hiring Erickson would be his knowledge of the Pac-12 since he coached at Washington State, Oregon State and ASU.

So what do you think Ute fans, would you like to see Erickson join the Utes' staff? See any negatives to it or all positives?

- Lya Wodraska

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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