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Thread: Utah Football 2017

  1. #41

    It’s way too early to have a good sense of how things will play out next season, but well past the point where it’s OK to start trying. With the scent of spring practice in the air, it felt like a good time to try to gauge expectations for next season. We’re taking stock of each team in the Pac-12 and see how things are shaping up for 2017. We conclude our series with Utah.

    Under Kyle Whittingham, Utah has been a consistent contender in the Pac-12 South during the past three seasons. Lachlan Cunningham/Getty ImagesUtes' role in the division race: Utah has been a serious contender in the Pac-12 South title chase for the past three seasons, winning at least nine games each year. The Utes peaked with a 10-win 2015 campaign, one which fell short of a division crown only because of a late 17-9 home loss to UCLA.

    The bottom line is that Utah has established itself as a force to be reckoned with in the Pac-12 while also demonstrating consistency. There are certainly flaws to be addressed here -- the offense, in particular, has gone MIA at some critical junctures -- but the Utes undoubtedly bring one of the league's hardest hitting and most physical presences.
    Last year, Utah finished three games off the Pac-12 South pace. But it's vital to examine the Utes' record more closely. All four of their losses came by a touchdown or less, and one of their wins was over USC. To this point, that's the only game the Trojans have ever lost with Sam Darnold as their starting quarterback.

    So while the Utes are replacing many key pieces -- four starting offensive linemen, star running back Joe Williams, and seven quality defense starters are gone -- they must still be considered a legitimate threat. USC is the favorite in the South, but recent history tells us Utah will remain a capable force.

    What constitutes success: The high volume of defensive departure will test the Utes' penchant for consistency in 2017. Games at USC and Washington immediately stand out as massive challenges. An Oct. 7 showdown against Stanford is an early highlight on the home schedule.

    Kyle Whittingham has set a high bar in Salt Lake City, winning 28 games over the past three seasons. So while the schedule may be daunting, the Utes will have to win at least eight games games while rebuilding their defense for 2017 to be considered a success.

    Offseason priorities: Retooling the offensive line is priority one. Utah has established its will here recently, and fresh faces will be responsible for perpetuating that success. Successfully working massive junior college tackle Jordan Agasiva into the rotation will help in the effort.

    The Utes must also pick a quarterback. Right now, it's a battle between incumbent Troy Williams, rising talent Tyler Huntley, and Alabama graduate transfer Cooper Bateman. If this competition bores consistent quarterback play, the Utah offense can become more dependable.

    Defensively, the Utes need bodies to replace defensive linemen Hunter Dimick and Pita Taumoepenu. Both brought disruptive presences which Utah will miss particularly acutely since several starters also are leaving the secondary. That unit must establish cohesion around its one returning stalwart, safety Chase Hansen.

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  3. #42
    Ok, I correctly predicted last year's win-loss record, and I'm pretty confident I can repeat with this year's schedule.

    I'm looking at the Utes to go 8-4 this year, with definite losses to Arizona, USC, and Washington.

    What you got?

  4. #43
    Utah football beats out numerous Pac-12 schools, BYU for commitment of athlete Malone Mataele

  5. #44
    Vegas says 6.5 wins this year for the Utes. Are you taking the over or under?

  6. #45
    Quote Originally Posted by accadacca View Post
    Vegas says 6.5 wins this year for the Utes. Are you taking the over or under?

    North Dakota
    Wash. St.
    7th win comes from one of the road games against Arizona, Oregon, or Washington

  7. #46
    The BYU game is gonna be a tough one. BYU always gears up to play the Utes, especially in Provo. Plus Utah lost a very large chunk of really good talent to the NFL, so they're playing with a relatively young inexperienced team that hasn't had a lot of playing time together. A lot of Ute fans will automatically chalk this one up as a win, but I wouldn't be surprised if the Cougs won this year.

  8. #47

  9. #48
    In byu book, the season it's a success if they beat the Utes.

    Sent from my Nexus 5X using Tapatalk

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  11. #49
    Utah, Kyle Whittingham agree to contract extension through 2021

  12. #50
    Why Jordan Palmer thinks former Utah QB Travis Wilson will catch 35 passes

  13. #51
    Quote Originally Posted by accadacca View Post
    Why Jordan Palmer thinks former Utah QB Travis Wilson will catch 35 passes

    Interesting article. I hope Palmer is right. I'm glad to see Wilson make something of himself in the pros.

    Although I think the biggest obstacle to Wilson's success is gonna be the fact that he's injury prone. The pros are relentlessly hard hitters, especially when they know there are bets being made about the supposedly remarkable ability of some walk-on rookie.

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