* Note: Current rankings are based on activity in the last calendar
A-Rod offense: What can we expect?
by UteThunder 2015-07-29 11:00:04
I went back and looked at A-Rod's previous time as OC and compared it to every season between 2003 & 2014 to hopefully give some insight as to what type of production we can expect.
Some interesting tidbits, compared to the other Ute offenses:
2010 - 3rd most offensive TDs - 51
2010 - T3rd most scoring drives - 64
2010 - 4th most passing yards and the last time a Ute offense passed for 3,000+ yards - 3069
2009 - T4th most offensive TDs - 42
2009 - 3rd most FGs - 21
2009 - 5th most scoring drives - 63
2009 - 5th most passing yards - 2980
2009 - 5th most rushing yards - 2084
Most encouraging for me is the passing yards and the total scoring drives from 2010, especially the TD drives. The 2010 offense had the same number of scoring drives as the 2014 offense, but the 2010 offense scored 10 more TDs. We probably finish 11-2 last year if we don't have to settle for FGs on 10 of our scoring drives.
Looking at the years we finished with our best win totals, each of those years had our highest number of scoring drives, with one exception(2003).
The article indicates Oklahoma and Kansas have been evaluated by B1G and could be teams 15 & 16 in the very near future. If that happens, the Big XII just might be DOA and we could be welcoming Texas to the Pac-12.
I wonder who would come with them and would the Pac stop at 14 or go to 16?
Two reasons I hope BYU gets invited to the Big XII
by UteThunder 2015-07-22 22:32:31
1) To see them face the harsh reality of playing P5 teams every week for 9 or 10 weeks in a row.
They wouldn't get any noticeable recruiting bump by going to a P5 because they would still be that "weird mormon school with all those rules." Also, TX and OK would take them seriously like TCU learned to do and with OK State, TX Tech, K-State, Baylor, and WV all being more than capable of routinely beating BYU, they would be lucky to finish 6-6 most years.
2) It keeps them out of the Pac-12.
I know people like to believe that the Pac-12 will never take BYU, but if the other P5 conferences all go to 16 teams it just might force the Pac-12 to do the same. And it will be slim pickins in the west if the Big XII goes to 16 first.
While it would be about as appealing as having explosive diarrhea while getting an MRI, BYU might just be one of the 4 best options for the Pac if it comes to that and the Big XII hasn't already taken them.
Obviously, the ideal situation is for them to rot in independence or crawl back to the MWC, but I would settle for them getting into the Big XII just because it pretty much guarantees they never join the Pac-12.
I have to say, Whit's latest statement regarding Hatfield plays right into my conspiracy theory.
by UteThunder 2015-07-17 14:29:57
After Hatfield is in the clear legally, Whit can't just do a 180 and reinstate Hatfield. He needs to start laying the groundwork now for Hatfield's reinstatement later so that people aren't asking "WTF?" when he is all of the sudden back on the team.
In the next 2-3 weeks I would expect a statement or press-conference from the prosecution and/or Hatfield's attorney to announce some type of final resolution on the case. My guess is a plea deal to something minor(probably possession of lost or stolen property) and Hatfield will be required to complete some community service, pay a fine, and pay restitution.
Shortly after that, within a week would be my guess, Whit will announce that Hatfield has been reinstated on a probationary basis and for full reinstatement he will need to meet certain criteria selected by KW and the team leadership committee.
As part of his punishment Hatfield will miss the opener vs Michigan and make his return to the lineup against Utah State; maybe not until Fresno State depending on how slow the final resolution comes.
Hatfield was kicked off the team so he could get an attorney, this is assuming his attorney is working pro bono.
Think about it, how is Hatfield supposed to afford an attorney to fight these charges? Sure, he could go with a public defender, but how good is that defense going to be?
So let's say a Ute-fan attorney wanted to represent Hatfield, and knowing his family probably doesn't have a lot of money, offers to do it for free. If Hatfield is a member of the football team, this would be an NCAA violation. BUT, if Hatfield has been kicked off the team, it is no longer a violation and he can get the best defense available to him - FOR FREE.
Next thing we know, the charges get dropped, maybe he pleas to a much lesser charge, Utah waits a few weeks for the dust to settle and Hatfield is reinstated just in time for fall camp. He probably sits out a game or two for being involved and that is the end of it.
Two more episodes in the book, and $20,000 more in Tommy's pocket.
In the episode before last, a military veteran(Army, IIRC) made it to the final obstacle course. He had a chance to beat Tommy's posted time of 6:41, but couldn't even get started on the final 20 ft rope climb and quit.
In the most recent episode, the season 2 men's finale, a firefighter was on a blistering pace and looked like he would be the one to finally beat Tommy's time. In the end, he finished the course but wasn't fast enough.
Tommy has pocketed $60,000 so far and I believe will be invited back to defend his title by being given the first opportunity to run the new "Skullbuster" obstacle course and set the new time for season 3 contestants to beat. For every episode they fail to beat his time, he will win another $10,000.
A few days back I posted about this TV show I stumbled upon that had former Ute LB Tommy Hackenbruck as a competitor. I'm watching the show in re-runs off of my DVR so if this isn't news to you, just move along.
Since my First Post On This I have watched two more episodes. In the first of the two, Tommy's time as champion almost came to an end but on the final obstacle(a 20 foot vertical rope climb) the challenger just couldn't get to the top. Tommy collects another $10,000.
In the second episode it wasn't even close. The challenger couldn't get past the midway point of the obstacle course which means another $10,000 for Tommy bringing his total to $40,000 so far.
This may be old news, but it is new to me. I've stumbled upon this TV show with former Ute Tommy Hackenbruck as a competitor. "Steve Austin's Broken Skull Challenge"
by UteThunder 2015-07-08 13:30:28
Desperate for some summer time programming I saw a preview for an upcoming episode and found it mildly entertaining so I DVR'd all available episodes.
The show pits 8 competitors against each other in a series of physical obstacles with the field being cut in half after each round until there is one competitor left standing to take on the final obstacle course. To win the show and the $10,000 prize, the final competitor must complete the obstacle course and do it in a time faster than the previous episode's champion. If they fail to do that, the previous champion collects another $10,000 and this continues throughout the season.
Tommy Hackenbruck was a competitor on the final episode of season 1 and after beating the other 7 competitors he completed the final obstacle course in a record time to become the reigning champion.
Just watched the first episode of season 2 and Tommy was invited back to run the new obstacle course to set the time to beat for the new competitors. At the end of the show the episode champ couldn't beat Tommy's time so Tommy remains the champion moving forward. He has won $20,000 so far and looking for more as the season progresses.
People need to chill out over this Hatfield situation.
by UteThunder 2015-07-06 14:00:27
I don't think anybody is saying what he has admitted to doing is okay, but in the grand scheme of things it is pretty minor.
I think we have to ask ourselves if it is worth throwing away this kid's future over?
For what he is guilty of, he should certainly be punished; by the legal system and the University of Utah. But kicking him off the team and out of school is not going to help straighten him out. Most likely he will wind up right back where he came from which doesn't sound like a good environment.
If his role ends up being limited to the cell phones, I see no reason why he should receive anything more than a suspension of a few games(in addition to the punishment from the legal system).
What can we expect from the passing game this year? My prediction . . . a minimum average of 255 yards passing per game.
by UteThunder 2015-07-02 11:34:18
I came by that number based on a few factors.
1) TW is a senior and has been the starter in 27 games going back to his freshman season and has played in many more.
2) TW has averaged 271 passing yards/game in his 10 best performances against teams that could be considered Pac-12 caliber.
3) A-Rod's previous stint as OC saw him call plays against 10 teams that I would consider to be Pac-12 caliber. In those 10 games, the Utah offense averaged 240 passing yards/game and he did all of that despite having a Freshman Jordan Wynn, an injured Sophomore Jordan Wynn, and a backup Terrance Cain.
TW's 10 best passing totals against Pac-12 caliber teams.
@ UCLA - 220
v Arizona - 311
v Utah State - 302
v Oregon State - 279
@ BYU - 273
v UCLA - 288
v Stanford - 234
v USC - 194
v Oregon - 297
@ Colorado - 311
A-Rod's 10 best passing totals against Pac-12 caliber teams.
2009 - All with true freshman Jordan Wynn
@ TCU - 219
@ BYU - 198
@ Cal - 338
2010 - Sophomore Jordan Wynn
v Pitt - 283
@ Iowa State - 354
2010 - Injured Sophomore Jordan Wynn
v TCU - 148
@ Notre Dame - 194
@ SDSU - 362
v BYU - 207
Let's just put this whole 'byu - were they or weren't they considered for an invite from the Pac-12?' thing to bed.
by UteThunder 2015-06-19 10:09:09
A good friend of mine(a byu fan) has a brother who works in the Pac-12 administration. Not for a Pac-12 school, but for the Pac-12 Conference.
I have verified the brother's position with the Pac-12 and he is someone who works directly with Larry Scott, was part of the decision making process, and would definitely be privy to this type of information.
According to the brother, byu was never even considered by the Pac-12 decision makers. No presentations. No discussions. No contact with byu. At no time was byu ever brought up in Pac-12 expansion meetings.
Utah offered everything byu had to offer, and then some, and brought none of the baggage.
This brother also said the Pac-12 will never consider byu for future expansion.
Pluses of the 2015 schedule; not the teams on it, but rather the circumstances surrounding when the games are played.
by UteThunder 2015-06-14 10:03:05
9/3: Michigan - Get Harbaugh's team in its first game and it is in SLC on a Thursday night, something Michigan has never done before.
9/11: Utah State - Both the Utes and the Aggies open on a Thursday, so there is no preparation advantage but it will be nice for Utah to have 8 days, instead of 7, to recover from what will likely be a very physical game against the Wolverines.
9/19: @ Fresno State - Coming off of a Friday game the Utes get an extra day to prepare for this road game and the Bulldogs will be coming off of a very tough and long road trip at Ole Miss.
10/10: California - Utah will be coming off of a bye and the game is at home.
10/24: @ USC - This game is sandwiched between two rivalry road games for the Trojans: @ Notre Dame and @ Cal. It's not a trap game, but if we are going to play USC on the road I think this is a nice time to do it.
11/7: @ Washington - It's on the road, but we catch the Huskies at the tail end of a tough stretch of games for them. They go @ USC, v Oregon, @ Stanford, v Arizona before playing Utah and then they have @ ASU to look forward to the following week. Brutal, for them.
11/14: @ Arizona - Similar circumstances to the USC road game; the Wildcats play Utah between games @ USC and @ Arizona State. On top of that, the Wildcats don't have a bye until the final week of the season which means this will be their 11th game in as many weeks. And it is in November, great time to play in Tucson.
11/21: UCLA - SLC in late November should be a bit chillier than the Bruins are use to and they play @ USC the following week.
- Not a single team has a bye week or extra prep time from playing a Thursday/Friday game the week before playing Utah.
After seeing TheJuggernaut's post a few pages back saying he has heard that Chris Hill is looking for a big name opponent to replace BYU with in '17 & '18, I decided to take a look at any teams that might fit the bill and whether they might have openings that match up.
For Hill to sell any cancellation or postponement of the '17-'18 BYU games to the media and the general fanbase, the new opponent has to be from a P5 conference obviously, but I believe it would have to be one of the bigger names from those conferences; similar to the way the Michigan series was announced as a "couldn't pass it up opportunity". With that in mind, I didn't bother looking at teams like Indiana or Duke.
Here's the list of teams with openings in 2017 & 2018.
ACC: Florida State, Miami*
BigXII: Kansas State, Oklahoma*, TCU, TX Tech**, West Virginia
I have been one of those fans thinking the BYU game should continue to be played. But I actually enjoyed not having them on the schedule last year and I am looking forward to not having to play them again this year.
Having the Aggies come back on the schedule this year has me thinking the idea of getting on a rotation between BYU and USU sounds really appealing, especially if there is any way Utah could get a 2-for-1 out of the Aggies to make the rotation work on a 5 year basis.
If we were only going to play one of them going forward, at this point I think I would prefer to play the Aggies.
Responding to annarborUte's request for 2008 and later recruiting numbers . . .
by UteThunder 2015-04-28 22:25:32
Utah recruiting rankings - Rivals:
2008 - #60 (prior to the Sugar Bowl season)
2009 - #44 (signing day was post Sugar Bowl, but many of this years recruits were committed prior to the 13-0 run; still, a nice little recruiting bump)
2010 - #32 (here is where we see the real fruits of the '08 season followed by the 10-3 '09 season; worth noting, this class signed prior to the Pac-12 invite but the rumors had already begun)
2011 - #37 (pretty much the same spot as the year before, the Sugar Bowl luster was probably beginning to fade, however, the Pac-12 excitement likely picked up the slack and a second straight 10-3 season didn't hurt either)
2012 - #28 (following an 8-5 inaugural season in the Pac-12 including a Sun Bowl victory, it is clear the Pac-12 is helping with recruiting)
2013 - #44 (after going 5-7 the ranking drops a fair amount, that's weird, but I would imagine the drop would've been even greater if Utah was still in the MWC)
2014 - #67 (back to back 5-7 seasons result in the ranking dropping even further, a total mystery; again, if Utah was still in the MWC I would expect the drop to be greater than it was)
2015 - #41 (9-4 with a Vegas Bowl victory and the ranking climbs significantly, funny how that works)
Looking at these rankings reveals 3 facts:
#1 - There was a Sugar Bowl bump.
#2 - The expected fall back to recruiting normality was staved off by the Pac-12 invite.
#3 - Conference affiliation without on-field success will result in lackluster recruiting and vice versa.
Bottom line - Utah will never be USC and without multiple NY6 bowls or CFP appearances within a short time frame, nobody should ever expect Utah's recruiting rankings to be in the top 25 consistently.
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