SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Sports) – The Utah football team has already avenged a loss from last season when they beat San Diego State two weeks ago.
Now they’re out to do it again.
Last October, Oregon State put up 42 points on Utah, the most the Utes gave up in the entire regular season in a 42-34 shootout win over the Utes. With Oregon State returning a lot of starters, including quarterback Chance Nolan, Utah knows it will be a challenge to win their 12th straight home game.
“That was a tough loss we took at Oregon State last year when we should have won the game,” said Utah wide receiver DeVaughn Vele. “But they’re a very well-disciplined team, so we know we’re going to get the very best from them. But we’re going to give them everything we’ve got. Having the home crowd on our backs, that’s going to help us a lot.”
“Those guys come to play,” added running back Jaylon Glover. “They’re going to be physical, they’re going to be ready to fight. I know they don’t want to take another loss in the conference, so we’ve got to be ready to go.”
That one loss was a narrow 17-14 defeat to #6 USC last week. The Trojans had to score in the final minutes to pull out the victory. Kyle Whittingham sees a lot of similarities between the Utes and Beavers, especially on offense.
“They’re a lot like us offensively,” Whittingham said. “They’re a balanced attack. They play multiple tight ends, use the play action pass game, so there’s a lot of characteristics with their offense that match up to our offense. We will have our hands full this week. It will be a great Pac-12 contest.”
Utes leading rusher Tavion Thomas missed the first half of the Arizona State game for what appears to be disciplinary reasons. Thomas played in the second half, but Whittingham wants to see improvement from his star back.
“Consistency on and off the field is the short version,” Whittingham explained. “Consistency and accountability on and off the field.”
With Chris Curry already out for the season, Ja’Quinden Jackson has moved from quarterback to running back, and scored a touchdown against the Sun Devils.
“He has a lot of experience as a running back,” Whittingham said. “He’s had the experience and the workload as a full-time starter at that position, so he’ll draw upon that.”
Utah (3-1) and Oregon State (3-1) will square off at noon at Rice-Eccles Stadium Saturday afternoon.