In a week of potential major NCAA changes, Pac-12 championships and coaching news, one story alone ruled the local Twitter feeds and radio waves.
Kyle Whittingham says it’s fine and dandy as is. Spence Eccles says he can live with a change.
But ultimately, it’s U. president David Pershing’s call:
Does a resolution passed by the University of Utah’s student leaders warrant changing the lyrics of the school’s fight song, "Utah Man"?
Student leaders say the song excludes and objectifies women, and that a line about co-eds can be interpreted as having a racial component. A host of angry commenters say, "Phooey."
Either way, Pershing is going to lose some friends.
Help him decide by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
And in the meantime, here’s what your jolly gang was doing across the green:
MEN’S BASKETBALL » It’s the offseason, but it was nonetheless a busy week for Runnin’ Utes head coach Larry Krystkowiak, who signed a five-year, $7 million contract Thursday, accepted the formal commitment of 7-foot Austrian center Jakob Poeltl on Friday, and parted ways with junior guard/forward Princeton Onwas on Sunday.
ON DECK: Season over
MEN’S TENNIS » The fifth-seeded Utes got off to a great start in Ojai, Calif., beating eighth-seeded Arizona four-love with singles and doubles victories from junior Slim Hamza, a two-time Pac-12 Player of the Week. But No. 19 Cal was a taller task on Wednesday, and the Utes were on the other end of the broom. Next they’ll get a two-week break before NCAA Regionals.
ON DECK: May 9-10, location to be determined
WOMEN’S TENNIS » Junior Tereza Bekerova won her first-round singles match in the Pac-12 championship tournament but was bounced by USC’s Zoe Scandalis in the round of 16 on Thursday. Then in doubles play, Bekerova teamed with senior Paige Miles to reach the quarterfinals of the Pac-12 doubles championship on Friday before losing again to Southern Cal.
ON DECK: NCAA Championships, May 9-11, location to be determined
GOLF » Utah finished in last place out of 12 Pac-12 teams at the conference championship tournament in Marana, Ariz. Senior Ben Bankhead was the top finisher for the Utes, shooting a final-day 70 to finish at +10 in 28th place. The nation’s No. 1 golfer, Patrick Rodgers, of Stanford, held off Washington’s Cheng-Tsung Pan for the individual title, and Stanford won the team championship.
ON DECK: Season over
BASEBALL » Utah head coach Bill Kinneberg earned his 500th career victory Friday against Nevada, but it was a dreary week otherwise for the Utes (13-25 overall, 3-15 Pac-12). Utah lost 12-8 on Tuesday at Utah Valley, then saw a doubleheader washed out Saturday before losing to Nevada 11-1 on Sunday. The forecast is even bleaker, with No. 11 Washington coming to Smith’s Ballpark for a three-game series Friday.
ON DECK: vs. Washington (noon Friday through Sunday)
SOFTBALL » It’s a beautiful week, let’s play … seven? Ernie Banks would’ve been proud of the Utah softball team this week, which swept a doubleheader against Utah Valley on Monday, split a blustery doubleheader with Southern Utah on Tuesday, and then was swept by No. 9 Arizona in Tucson over the weekend. At 23-24, the Utes continue to hover around .500, but with just three more conference games left they have little opportunity to improve on their 5-15 Pac-12 mark.
ON DECK: vs. California (7 p.m. Thursday, 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday)
GYMNASTICS » A week after missing the cut for the Super Six — for the second straight season — the Utes chose instead to reflect on the positives of a Pac-12 title-winning campaign. Tribune reporter Lya Wodraska provided some perspective on this year’s Red Rocks.
ON DECK: Season over
FOOTBALL » Local coaches and players, Utes among them, praised NCAA rules changes governing meals and snacks, as well as new summer practice regulations. Meanwhile, players are heading home to see friends and family while Utah coaches hit the road to work on next year’s recruiting class.
ON DECK: Spring ball over
WOMEN’S TRACK AND FIELD » The week’s highlights came at the Drake Relays in Des Moines, Iowa. Nikki Rietz, Andrea Chavez, Rebekah Winterton and Susannah Hurst crossed in fifth in the 1600-meter relay to kick things off Wednesday. On Friday, senior Rosalie Waller set a new school record in the 800 meters to finish third, and junior Ali Eisenbeiss took fifth. Then on Saturday, a sprint medley team featuring Alissa Atisme, Rhianna Williams, Eisenbeiss and Waller clocked in at 3:53.61 for sixth place.
ON DECK: Longhorn Invitational (Saturday in Austin), Payton Jordan Invitational (Saturday in Palo Alto, Calif.)
Results available at utahutes.com.
— Matthew Piper
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