Utewrap: The week in Utah sports, March 24-30
GYMNASTICS » A week after capturing the school’s first Pac-12 team championship, the Red Rocks landed the No. 1 seed in the NCAA Fayetteville Regional. It’s a tough draw for the No. 5 Utes that includes conference foe UCLA (No. 8) and host Arkansas (No. 17). The Utes spent the week of practice trying to clear up minor errors without entering burnout territory. Also: If you haven’t already, read Tribune reporter Lya Wodraska’s story about the astoundingly early recruitment of the NCAA’s top gymnasts.
ON DECK: NCAA Regionals on April 5, Fayetteville, Ark., 3 p.m.
FOOTBALL » The second week of spring camp brought the first two tackle practices, in which offensive coordinator Dave Christensen’s offense appeared to make great strides after some hiccups in Week One. The U. also received a visit from Baltimore Ravens wideout Steve Smith. Bad news: The Utes lost linebacker Jacoby Hale for spring, and maybe longer, with a torn ACL.
ON DECK: Days 7-9 (Tuesday and Thursday 3-5 p.m., Friday scrimmage 4-6 p.m., either at the practice field or Rice-Eccles Stadium; inclement weather may lead team to practice inside . Public may view outdoor practices.)
SWIMMING AND DIVING » The Utah men finished 35th overall at the NCAA Championships in Austin, Texas. Sophomore diver Josiah Purss took ninth on the 1-meter board to earn All-American status, and also finished 17th on the 3-meter board — 0.1 points out of 16th and All-American territory. With Kersten Merry’s All-American finish in the platform dive last week, Utah is one of just 10 schools this season to have an All-American diver of both genders. Junior sprinter Nick Soedel entered competition with the nation’s third-fastest time in the 100 free and finished a disappointing 19th. Sophomore Bence Kiraly also finished 19th in the 1650 free, lowering the school record to 14:57.59. Soedel teamed with Ken Tiltges, Jonas Holmstrom and Alex Fernandes for 19th in the 400 free relay.
ON DECK: Season over.
MEN’S BASKETBALL » Sophomores Jeremy Olsen and Brandon Taylor were named to the Pac-12’s All-Academic first team Wednesday. Honorable mention Pac-12 All-Academic team members include Runnin’ Utes Dallin Bachynski, Renan Lenz and Dakari Tucker. Tribune reporter Tony Jones wrote about the bittersweet feeling coaches have about winning 21 games but missing the NCAA Tournament and being shown the exit by Saint Mary’s in the first round of the NIT.
ON DECK: Season over
BASEBALL » It was a brutal week for the Pingin’ Utes, losing in 11 innings to rival BYU on Tuesday night at Smith’s Ballpark and then dropping three straight on the road against Cal. Combined, the Utes (9-17, 0-9 Pac-12) lost four games by five total runs.
ON DECK: vs. Arizona (Friday through Sunday at noon at Smith’s Ballpark)