College Football Recap: Utah Utes @ UCLA Bruins

Utah Utes escapes a Rose Bowl shootout with a win


I’ve been writing for Hoyo’s Revenge for about 3 weeks and I have watched each Utah Utes football game ALL SEASON. I’ve read every story written by any reasonably sized news outlet about this team and analyze much of what they do.


I feel like I have a solid grasp on the type of team they are! With that being said.. I did not see this coming and still don’t think I believe it.


My preview for the UCLA game explained how I expected the defense on both sides to make this a slow and low-scoring game. Since the teams combined for 97 points, I think it’s safe to say that I was very wrong.


Utah came in averaging around 27 points per game. After they scored 52 on Saturday, they nearly doubled that when all was said and done. The Utes, notorious for hogging time of possession with their low-scoring offense, got into a high scoring battle with UCLA (which is crazy), and WON (which is crazier).


Here are two of my main takeaways from Saturdays game:


Utah’s passing defense needs to be better


Josh Rosen was out, and backup QB Mike Fafaul was making his second start of the season. All of this sounds like a situation for a tenacious defense to make a statement.


A statement was made, but it wasn’t by the Utah defense. Fafaul threw for 464 yards and 5 touchdowns against a suspect Utah secondary. Utah was able to force him to throw four interceptions, but that’ll happen when you throw SEVENTY TIMES.


I don’t care who you’re playing or what type of game it is, those numbers just aren’t respectable. Especially when everyone knew that UCLA was going to pass on every single down.


This defense will need to be better, and this upcoming week will force them to answer that call quickly. Jake Browning and Washington bring one of the best passing offenses in the country to Rice-Eccles.


October 22, 2016; Pasadena, CA, USA; UCLA Bruins quarterback Mike Fafaul (12) throws against the Utah Utes during the first half at the Rose Bowl. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports




Two weeks ago, the Utah running back spot was one full of worry. Armand Shyne had just gone down with a knee injury, and the Utes were ready to turn to two redshirt freshman to play a huge portion of the game.


A few phone calls later Joe Williams was back at practice with the team, looking fresher than ever. After two games back, Williams has rushed for over 500 yards and five touchdowns.


Williams was a man on a mission on Saturday, and nothing UCLA did could slow him down. While the Bruins got their offense through the air, the Utes got theirs from Williams on the ground.


Totaling 332 yards on 29 carries, Joe Williams set a school record for most rushing yards in a game. Because of this, the Utes dominated their favorite stat: time of possession.


October 22, 2016; Pasadena, CA, USA; Utah Utes running back Joe Williams (28) runs the ball against the UCLA Bruins during the second half at the Rose Bowl. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports


Looking Forward


The Utes will prepare this week for the greatest challenge of the season. Due to the 4th ranked Huskies looming on the schedule, the Utes must keep complacency out of their minds.


Since this game features two teams ranked in the top 20, it is assured to be one of the best games of the upcoming weekend.