Utah should schedule for a tougher Homecoming game

By By Nick Pappas

By Nick Pappas

On Saturday, ghosts of the past will converge on the green field of Rice-Eccles Stadium. Alumni will dress in crimson and reminisce about their years as Utes.

One old friend8212;the guest of honor8212;will be a shade different. He’ll be an envious purple. Former Utah coach Ron McBride has been invited to the stadium he helped build. He was the first coach to beat rival BYU consistently. He was the coach who constructed the wrecking ball that became a BCS buster.

The game will begin with a fitting tribute. It will also end with a fitting loss. McBride won’t be coming alone to this party. He’ll be bringing a group of Wildcats with him.

Weber may be 3-1, but two of those wins are against cupcakes Montana-Western and Dixie. Utah would have more trouble against their own practice squad.

Homecoming is about reliving the past. McBride will receive a hearty thank you, and then be hauled to the curb just like in 2002.
With emotions high for both the team and the fans, Utah should never schedule such an easy win during homecoming week. And it just seems shameful to bring in McBride and then swiftly kick him in the junk.

Yes, when fans and alumni go to a homecoming game, winning is important.

It might be the one game they see this year besides BYU. Yet, playing a team like Weber State is the equivalent of taking home the dumbest, drunkest girl at the end of the night. Sure, you can put a stamp on your bedpost, but you feel dirty afterward. Besides, wouldn’t you rather wake up with Tina Fey, not just a girl in Tina Fey glasses from Wasilla?

Not all wins are created equal. Fans want to see a quality win on homecoming night, not any win that will jump in bed with them. Alumni want to be reminded of games that mattered8212;the ones that remain with them years after graduation. Weber is a one-night stand worth forgetting.

Equally, the team feeds off the energy. There is a reason the term home-field advantage exists. When the stadium is filled and the players can hear the deafening cheers of the crowd, it’s a huge burst in confidence and desire. Fans create victories.

What a waste. This boost could be the difference in a game against TCU or a non-conference heavyweight. Instead it will be used up on a team the Utes could beat in the most hostile of environments anyway.

So, thank you for one more win, Coach McBride. Next homecoming, let’s try for Urban Meyer.

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Nick Pappas