SALT LAKE CITY — Talk about an opener. The Utah Utes kick off Pac-12 play against 10th-ranked Washington, the team picked to finish on top of the conference.
“It’s how the schedule lays out and we happen to play the clear-cut favorite according to all of the preseason stuff,” said Utah coach Kyle Whittingham. “We just have to be ready to go.”
Saturday’s game at Rice-Eccles Stadium is set for 8 p.m., and is being broadcast to a national audience on ESPN. Whittingham is expecting a great environment.
“We should get a great crowd and it is our ‘blackout game’ with a late kickoff,” he said. “We will be ready and we’ll see what we can do.”
After opening the season with victories over Weber State (41-10) and Northern Illinois (17-6), Utah’s schedule now features nine straight Pac-12 opponents. Whittingham insists that preparation and routine remains the same.
“Our players are smart guys and they know this is a big challenge,” he said.
Washington (1-1) opened the season with a 21-16 loss to Auburn in Atlanta. The Huskies bounced back last week with a 45-3 win at home over North Dakota. This is their first true road game.
“We’re going to an extremely hard place to play, harder than where we played back East because we’re truly on their campus,” Washington coach Chris Petersen said at his weekly press conference. “(Utah is) a team that is super well-coached and is going to be one of the better teams in the country when it’s all said and done.”
Although the Huskies lead the all-time series against Utah 10-1, there’s an abundance of respect between the programs. They’ve played some tight games during the past three seasons. Washington prevailed twice, but Utah holds an 88-87 edge in points scored. Last season in Seattle, the Huskies rallied for a 33-30 victory …read more
Source:: Deseret News – Sports News