No gap between Utes' top running backs
Before fall camp started, Utah coach Kyle Whittingham said he was perfectly fine with Matt Asiata and Eddie Wide being co-starters in 2010, unless one separated himself from the other during the course of the preseason.
Now less than a week away from the opener, don't expect any differences in the depth chart.
"They're both exact equals," Whittingham said, when asked to evaluate the two. "Both are going to get carries. They are still 1 and 1-A."
That there was no separation could be viewed as a good thing for the Utes, particularly since Asiata is coming off knee surgery.
He hasn't shown any loss of step as a consequence of the injury and had a strong camp.
Wide, meanwhile, has shown the same form he did in 2009 when he rushed for 1,069 yards and set a school record by rushing for 100 yards or more in six straight games.
He has had more hype surrounding him this year than ever before and is a candidate for the Doak Walker award, which is presented to the nation's top college back.
But the unassuming Wide isn't getting caught up in the hype, crediting the team for helping him earn the nomination for the award and saying he is fine splitting carries with Asiata.
The most important thing, he said, is beating Pitt.
"We're tired of hitting each other," he said. "We're ready to hit somebody else. We're ready to go after Pitt."
Former Utah lineman Zane Beadles has been named the MWC Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year. Beadles, who now plays for the Denver Broncos, graduated from Utah with a 3.568 GPA and a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering.
The Utes have used chocolate milk as a recovery drink in the past after trainers read some studies determined milk had the right mix of proteins and carbs to serve as a good recovery fluid.
However, the Utes have gone back to more conventional ways of nutrition this season for their long practice sessions.
Whittingham has a rule that players must come to meetings with a bottle that is at least half full for them to drink. Powerade and Honey Stinger energy chews are also available to players.
Despite the high temperatures, the Utes have had few cramping issues, head trainer Paul Silvestri said.
"Coach Whitt is very good about preaching to them about hydration," he said. "Knock on wood, we've only had two guys cramp in the three years I've been here."
P Pitt at Utah
Thursday, 6:30 p.m.
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V Utah athletic director Chris Hill admits eliminating the Fan Fest in 2009, in an effort to save a little money, was a big mistake.