Would you say Utah has performed at, above, or below expectations so far this season? Explain your reasoning.
Sean Reynolds, Block U: Definitely below. When you’re picked to finish 2nd in the Pac-12 South and you’re now fighting for a bowl bid and .500 season, you know you’re not living up to expectations. Yes, much of that was based around a healthy Jordan Wynn, however, even if Wynn was his old self, I suspect there still would’ve been some major struggles. Hopefully they can finish strong, but this year has been painful and hardly enjoyable (well, outside Saturday and the BYU game).
Utecentral, Ute Football Central: I think many local and national media expected an 8-4 season from this team at a minimum and some even thought 10-2 was do able. I was hopeful for a special season, but that was completely dependant on a healthy Jordan Wynn and it was clear (now in retrospect) in their first game against UNC and his performance in week two against Utah State, that Jordan Wynn was not right. His arm was weak and inaccurate and his confidence was not in a spot to lead this team to success in 2012 season. I'm not knocking the kid who has a hurt heart and fought through multiple surgeries and rehabs to prepare for the season, but ultimately it just wasn't meant to be. When he was rested and pulled from throwing during fall camp and the final scrimmage for 2 to 3 days, it should have been abundantly clear that things were not right and a repeat of last year might be upon us. Expectations will be more realistic in 2013. PS: Punch me in the face if I fall victim to that again and call for an 9-3 or 10-2 season next year.
Matt Quinney, Academically Ineligible: Well below expectations so far. Expectations were to finish at least 2nd in the PAC 12 South. We could defer the reason to the injury of Wynn, but I believe even if Wynn was still playing we still would be this bad. Our offensive line is inexperienced and not very good at all, the PAC 12 is much better than most people anticipated, and Brian Johnson is still learning how to call a complete game as the new O.C.
What's your prediction for this game and why?
Sean Reynolds, Block U: Utah 28, Washington State 17. Utah has some momentum and the Cougars are struggling, even though they’ve been in their last few games. It doesn’t hurt the game is at Rice-Eccles Stadium, where Utah has only lost once this season (to USC).
Utecentral, Ute Football Central: I think the Utes finally have some confidence and are starting to believe that they can finish the season strong and make a bowl game. WSU seems to be going the other direction, but did have a strong performance against Stanford. Utah is favored by 12 and I think they win, but not sure if they cover. I'll take Utah 31-21 and boldly predict that Utah will make a field goal, something not done in the past five games.
Matt Quinney, Academically Ineligible: It seems like this year in the PAC 12 anything can happen. With that being said though, I think that Utah will be able to ride the momentum of their win against Caland do some of the same things this week against a mediocre WSU team. I think Utah wins 34-17.