The factors you didn’t think about

Sure. There are several variables that aren’t in Utah’s favor coming into this Saturday’s rivalry match-up against BYU.

The Cougars have a better record, get to play at home and still have their starting quarterback. There are a few other game statistics that also are in BYU’s favor, but that’s not what I’m here to discuss.

It’s all about the intangibles, and quite frankly, they lean in favor of the Utes. So here are the top-eight intangibles (representing each scoring drive the Utes had last year against BYU) that will heavily influence and favor Utah to go down south and come away with a victory.

1. Mascots (Cosmo vs. Swoop)-Since 1953, Cougar fans everywhere have watched their furry pal Cosmo excite BYU crowds. He’s funny, quick-and fuzzy. Swoop didn’t arrive until 1996 but is quickly showing up Cosmo in athletic ability. Rumors say that Curtis Brown sleeps with a stuffed “Cosmo” cougar to keep scary dreams of Steve Fifita running toward him out of his mind. This gives a false sense of security.

Edge: Utes

2. Food Courts-BYU’s “CougarEat” is light-years ahead of Utah’s infamous Chartwells. The CougarEat has a Subway, Taco Bell, Teriyaki Stix, their own ice cream, fresh baked goods and several other options. Utah has overpriced generic food. If Ute football players were forced to eat at Chartwells, the edge would go to BYU. Fortunately, they aren’t.

Edge: Utes

3. Testing facilities-BYU students are forced to take tests inside the dreaded testing center. Imagine 500 some-odd desks spaced just far enough for several “cheat-detectives” to ensure you aren’t copying your friend. You either take the test in there or nowhere. At Utah, you just take the test in your classroom. Simple enough. I think John Beck already has enough pressure on the field.

Edge: Utes

4. Cheerleaders-This one’s easy. The Utes simply have better looking, er, more talented cheerleaders. Football players appreciate that.

Edge: Utes

5. City (Provo vs. Salt Lake City)-There really isn’t a lot to do in Provo. I guess when the players need a quick break they can hike the Y or go ice blocking. Salt Lake City is full of things to do. This takes the stress off the Utes, enabling them to feel more confident on game day.

Edge: Utes

6. Tunnel Singing-What’s that? Go to BYU late at night, walk toward the tunnels, and you’ll find out. While Cougars are catching colds singing “Popcorn Popping on the Apricot Tree” and “Scatter Sunshine,” Utes are watching game film and definitely not singing.

Edge: Utes

7. Languages-With 62 returned LDS missionaries on the team, the Cougars can speak 12 different languages. At first glance, I thought it would be advantageous because they could then call secret plays in Korean or Mongolian. Then I realized it would just become confusing and cause Todd Watkins to drop yet another deep pass.

Edge: Utes

8. Marriage-The BYU Web site says that 30 of its players are married. It looks like the Utes have six or seven. Certainly there are advantages to being married, but for a football player? So your Saturday morning agenda is rake the leaves, watch the kids, help cook breakfast, help wax your wife’s legs and back, take out the trash, change the oil and then hurry to the game. Yikes.

Edge: Utes

[email protected]