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2013 Utah Utes
Schedule and Odds
The Utes haven't finished with a winning conference record since joining the Pac-12 and that will continue to be the case playing in the South unless they make some major improvements. Not to mention they are replacing California and Washington on their schedule with Stanford and Oregon which will make things even harder for them.
After being brought down by a stagnant offense for the majority of 2012, they brought in veteran coordinator Dennis Erickson to pick up the slack. Quarterback Travis Wilson is still very young, but Utah hopes a more up-tempo attack will help him. After just seven TDs and six INTs in his freshman year, there's only one way to go but up for Wilson. It also helps that his top three receivers are back that contributed for 101 of Wilson's 128 completions last season. Kelvin York will take over the starting RB position in his final year and should be able to match John White's numbers from a year ago. The offensive line also looks deep, led by Jeremiah Poutasi who's listed as one of the best tackles in the conference.
Utah is losing tons of talent on the defensive end, but as the season goes on, their depth should be able to pick them up. They'll need work in the secondary with a couple of new players coming in because early games against Oregon State and UCLA could be brutal. No matter, this is a unit that should be able to stay strong against some of the higher scoring teams.
2013 Utah Utes Football Schedule
Aug. 29 vs. Utah State
Sept. 7 vs. Weber State
Sept. 14 vs. Oregon State
Sept. 21 at BYU
Oct. 3 vs. UCLA
Oct. 12 vs. Stanford
Oct. 19 at Arizona
Oct. 26 at USC
Nov. 9 vs. Arizona State
Nov. 16 at Oregon
Nov. 23 at Washington State
Nov. 30 vs. Colorado
The Utes lost in overtime to cross-state rival Utah State last year in Logan. This year they are at home in the opener which will be a good test for their new offense. The Aggies return plenty of starters from their 11-2 season. A road game at BYU may also be trouble in non-conference play.
Utah will get their first three conference games at home, so if they want to come out strong, the early season is the time to do it. Unfortunately, none of those games are great matchups with the worst team of the bunch being Oregon State. From there, the Utes will get road games at Arizona, USC and Oregon in three of their next four matchups. The one home game is against Arizona State. Basically, if Utah's offense doesn't come around, they could easily be without a win in conference play until the final two games of the season when they travel to Washington State and get Colorado at home.
It's hard to see them finishing with a better record (5-7) or with more wins in conference play (three) than last year. The offense still has tons of work to do and the defense won't be over-the-top good. Unless Travis Wilson can become a new QB, a bowl game will be too far away in 2013.
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