Tyler Huntley finds his groove as Utes offense shines against Stanford


SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Sports) – This was the Utah offense Utes fans had been hoping to see since the start of the season.

Tyler Huntley was extremely efficient in Saturday’s upset over Stanford, completing 17 of 21 passes for 199 yards and a game-clinching 57-yard touchdown pass to Samson Nacua.

After the game, Huntley had a little chip on his shoulder as he entered the post game press conference.

“What do you have to say about my receivers now?” he asked the media. “What do you have to say about the offense now?”

On Monday, Huntley was a little less demonstrative, but just has satisfied.

“It was just showing you that if we execute and do our jobs, that’s what happens,” Huntley said.

Huntley had not thrown a touchdown pass since the season opener against Weber State. But on Saturday, Huntley made big plays when he needed to, completing passes to seven different receivers, and showed some rare emotion that really fired up his team.

“It all starts from the quarterback,” said wide receiver Demari Simpkins. “Once you see that, it sparks the offense. The o-line starts have fun, the receivers start having fun. Zack starts smiling and having fun and running his behind off. So, once you see that smile on his face and everything is going well, everything is going to pick up.”

The offense as a whole gained 421 yards, including 160 yards rushing by Zack Moss and did not turn the ball over once in the 40-21 victory.

“The energy, the passion, the juice the guys played with, I think it started last week,” head coach Kyle Whittingham said. “Even though we didn’t win the game at Washington State, I think we’re starting to figure out who we are and develop some confidence, particularly on the offensive side of the ball.”

“I’ve had some good days,” Huntley said. “But I feel like that was one of my better days, and yeah it felt good to have one of those days.”

A funny moment happened during Monday’s press conference when Whittingham was asked about a tweet he sent out earlier that day. Whittingham was answering questions from fans on Twitter, and one fan asked him if he ever needed to go to the bathroom during a game. Whittingham tweeted, “Never a problem. I have an unusually large bladder.”

When asked about the tweet at the press conference, Whittingham said, “I went from Salt Lake to California in a car without stopping one time to do anything. So, that’s pretty unusual, is it not? That’s like nine hours, ten hours.”

When asked when he realized he had this skill, Whittingam said, “On that ride. That ride was informative for me. I said, hey, I haven’t stopped to go to the bathroom or anything for 9 1/2 hours.

That’s almost as impressive as Utah’s first Pac-12 win.

Utah next hosts Arizona Friday night at 8:00 p.m. 

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