Utah Football to Host Washington State in the Regular Season Finale


University of Utah junior wide receiver Samson Nacua (45) running with the ball after catching a pass from University of Utah senior quarterback Tyler Huntley (1) in an NCAA Football game vs. Washington State University at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City, UT on Saturday September 28, 2019.(Photo by Curtis Lin | Daily Utah Chronicle)

By Sammy Mora, Sports Editor


The regular-season finale is upon the University of Utah football team. After a wild 2020 season, the Utes will cap off their regular season with a matchup with the Washington State Cougars. The Cougars are coming off a last-minute cancellation versus Cal last week. The last time that WSU took the field was on the sixth of this month when they headed to LA to face south champion USC. 


Scouting the Utes 

Ranking: N/A

Record: (2-2, 1-2 Pac-12) 

Last Week: W vs Colorado, 38-21

In their last road game of the regular season, the Utes marched into Boulder and upset the No. 21 team in the nation. For the first time all season, the team put together a full 60 minutes of football and came out victorious. 

Quarterback Jake Bentley was 20-32 for 240 yards in the victory. He also had one interception and two touchdown passes. His first TD pass of the day was to Solomon Enis, who had his best game of the season with 42 yards. Britain Covey was the leading receiver in the win though with 76 yards. He also had the other touchdown from Bentley. Brant Kuithe and Bryan Thompson helped round out the top four receivers with 53 and 42 yards, respectively. 

Ty Jordan continued to show his dominance in the victory, accounting for 14 yards and two rushing touchdowns, one of which went for 66-yards to the house.   

The Utah defense showed up and showed out on Saturday, only allowing 110-yards on the ground. However, they did allow 267 yards through the air. 

Nephi Sewell led the team with 11 tackles. He also had an interception and a forced fumble. Max Tuapi also had a forced fumble in the victory. Freshman Nate Ritchie recorded his first career sack on Saturday. 


Honors for the Team

For the second week in a row, Jordan was honored as the conference’s freshman of the week. Kicker Jadon Redding also was named the back-to-back special teams player of the week. Redding was perfect on both his PATs as well as field goals in the victory. 

Linebacker Devin Lloyd was one of six players named to the Dick Butkus Award finalist list. The award is given out annually to the best linebacker in the country. Lloyd is the lone player from the western United States who is on the list. 


Scouting the Cougars

Ranking: N/A

Record: (1-2, 1-2 Pac-12) 

Last Game: Dec. 6 vs USC, L 38-13

Last week didn’t go to plan for the Cougars. Their game versus Cal was canceled mere hours before kickoff due to a positive test within the Cal program. This week’s game versus Utah will now be the first time the team has played since Dec. 6 when they lost to USC. Prior to that game, the Cougars had not played since Nov. 14 due to COVID-19 issues. 

In their loss to USC, quarterback Jayden de Laura struggled, going 18-29 for 134 yards, but had two interceptions. Backup quarterback Gunner Cruz accounted for the lone passing touchdown for the Cougars. 

Renard Bell led the team with 76 receiving yards. He was followed closely by Travell Harris who had 74 yards. Bell had the lone receiving touchdown in the loss. 

In the absence of running back Max Borghi, Deon McIntosh stepped up. He rushed for 64 yards for WSU. Borghi is expected to be back this week after missing multiple games this season. 

On the defensive side of the ball, the Cougars were led by Daniel Isom who had seven total tackles. Both Jahad Woods and Armani Marsh had six tackles. 


Kyle Whittingham on RB Max Borghi: 

“He’s a good player. A really good player and he hasn’t been able to get on the field this year, but if he comes back, it’ll make them a better offense, no doubt about it because he’s a guy who can do a lot of things. He runs the ball effectively and can catch the ball out of the backfield, and he’s a complete back. So if they have him available that makes them that much more dangerous.” 


How to Watch

The game is set for an 11:30 a.m. MST kickoff on FS1. Eric Collins and Ben Leber will be on the call. Fans can also listen to the game on the Home of the Utes, ESPN700 with Bill Riley and Scott Mitchell. 


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