• Utah  will lose a player to a bad targeting call, an injury, a dog bite, food  poisoning, chicken pox, or some other misfortune or malady, and replace him with a reserve who will play just as well.
  • A  BYU player not named Corbin Kaufusi who was counted on to play a significant role in this game will be for whatever reason unable to go.
  • BYU will have no more than one offensive play in excess of 25 yards.
  • Kalani Sitake will break the world record for most hugs given to opposing players and coaches and friends in the postgame.
  • Kyle Whittingham will have old-school rock-and-roll piped into Utah’s pregame locker room.
  • Jason Shelley will throw for more than 250 yards.
  • Zach Wilson will throw for less than 250 yards.
  • Shelley will complete passes to at least seven different receivers.
  • Wilson will complete passes to at least seven different receivers, including two defenders wearing red.
  • Shelley will further the notion that he — not Tyler Huntley — is the best quarterback in Utah’s program.
  • Wilson will absorb painful lessons most freshman quarterbacks must learn, but he’ll be better for it on down the line.
  • Britain Covey will have more than five receptions and more than 100 receiving yards for the Utes.
  • No BYU receiver will get 100 yards.
  • There will be a few scattered empty seats at Rice-Eccles Stadium.
  • There will be fewer BYU fans on hand than usually show up at RES for the rivalry game.
  • Armand Shyne will rush for 100 yards or more.
  • TJ Green will get a minimum of 50 yards.
  • There will be a pick-6.
  • Jaylen Dixon will catch a 40-yard pass.
  • It will feel colder on the BYU sideline than the Utah sideline.
  • Matt Hadley will lead the Cougars in rushing yards.
  • Matt Bushman will have his best game of the season.
  • Bradlee Anae will get a minimum of two sacks.
  • Francis Bernard will be happier in red than he would have been in blue.
  • Bernard will draw an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.
  • Austin Lee will be happier in blue than he would have been in red.
  • BYU will turn the ball over three times, two interceptions and one fumble.
  • Utah will suffer one turnover.
  • Sione  Takitaki will make at least seven tackles, and declare after the game  he’s legally changing his name to Sione Tackle-Tackle.
  • Chase Hansen will make at least eight stops.
  • The talent gap between the Utes and Cougars will be obvious, but the toughness margin will be less apparent.
  • BYU will miss Kaufusi more than the Utes miss any of their injured players.
  • Matt  Gay will kick at least three field goals, and BYU fans will wonder for  the 1,000th time why the Cougars didn’t make room for him on their  roster back when they had the chance.
  • Mitch Wishnowsky will pin BYU’s offense inside the 10-yard line with at least one punt.
  • There will be a controversial call by the referees that will either alter or accelerate the game’s momentum.
  • A BYU fan will claim a Utah fan poured beer on him or on a family member.
  • A Utah fan will ask, “Why would anyone waste a tasty brew by pouring it on a BYU fan?”
  • Collectively, the Cougars will quietly curse independence and wish they, too, were in the Pac-12.
  • Utah’s defense will hold BYU to 100 rushing yards.
  • The  ambient temperature by the fourth quarter will be in the 25-degree  range, the windchill factor around 12, making it difficult for a running  back to hang onto the football and impossible for a marching band horn  player to blow into a trombone. 
  • With  so much multi-lingual skill on the field, some of the in-game trash  talk will make that banter sound more like an argument at the United  Nations.
  • The Utes will be as good as BYU fans fear they are.
  • Utah will roll up 500 total yards of offense, give or take 50.
  • BYU will roll up less than 350 total yards.
  • At  some point early in the game, Whittingham’s eyes will pop out of their  sockets, his head will spin, his verbiage will turn blue, as the  officials make a stupid call. Bonus: Whittingham will break the two-mile  barrier as he paces up and down the sideline.
  • Utah fans will show up at Rice-Eccles like Romans at the Coliseum, expecting  a show, expecting a spectacle, expecting lions to pop up out of the  turf in the third quarter to devour the visiting gladiators. And as they do, Shelley will look up at the crowd and exclaim: “Are you not  entertained? Are … you … not … entertained?”
  • BYU will score 13 points.
  • Utah will score 30 points.
  • Whittingham will never again lose to his alma mater.
  • As usual, half of these predictions will be wrong.

GORDON MONSON hosts “The Big Show” with Jake Scott weekdays from 3-7 p.m. on 97.5 FM and 1280 AM The Zone.