Utah Season Predictions: Can the Utes win Pac-12 South?

With the season right around the corner, I have started wondering about how Utah will do this year with all of the roster changes that have been made. So I’ve decided to discuss what has changed for Utah Football since last season, and break down their schedule and roster to see what they might be able to accomplish this season.

Utah is entering its 6th year in the Pac-12, and it seems as each year goes by, the expectations for the Utes continue to rise. Part of the reason for that is because Utah has been able to improve year after year since entering the Pac-12 Conference. Somehow, Coach Whittingham and the Utes are finding a way to get better and compete at a higher level in one of the best conferences in the country. So can they improve on last years 10 win season?

Utah has lost a lot of players from last years squad. The most notable last year starters that are gone are: QB Travis Wilson, RB Devontae Booker, Punter Tom Hackett, LB Gionni Paul, DE Jason Fanaika, LB Jason Whittingham, WR Kenneth Scott,  and LB Jared Norris. That’s a lot of core players, especially from the defensive side of the ball, that are gone. However, Utah does always seem to find a way to be a top defensive team in the country. But offensively there are some question marks, too. Will Joe Williams be able to live up to expectations and be a reasonable replacement for Booker? How will the receiving core do? And who will start at QB?

With all of these questions circling around, here are my game-by-game predictions for the 2016-2017 season:

 

SUU at Utah – W

BYU at Utah – W

Utah at San Jose St. – W

USC at Utah – L

Utah at Cal – W

Arizona at Utah – W

Utah at Oregon St. – W

Utah at UCLA – L

Washington at Utah – W

Utah at Arizona St. – W

Oregon at Utah – W

Utah at Colorado – W

 

Regular Season Record:  10-2

There’s a few games this year that could go either way. The BYU game will be a difficult one, and I’m only picking the Utes because of home field advantage. Also, Oregon can be a very tough game, even at home. But the Utes can pull out 10 wins this year, and possibly improve on last years record if they can win their bowl game too.

Utah does have a fairly difficult schedule, but not quite as bad as it was last year. There are a lot of starters being replaced, but offensively you will see improvement, and defensively I’m not too worried. There’s also a lot of great talent returning to Utah this year, and you should expect Joe Williams to have a big year if he can stay healthy.

 

– Jesse Thayne

 

2 thoughts on “Utah Season Predictions: Can the Utes win Pac-12 South?

    1. The Utah Utes shall win the PAC-12 outright.
      They will finish the regular season undefeated and be selected in the playoffs for the National Championship.

      Like

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