Nov. 7, 2011
Utah vs. UCLA Press Release
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TWO MINUTE DRILL
> Utah (5-4, 2-4 Pac-12) hosts UCLA (5-4, 4-2 Pac-12) on Saturday, Nov. 12. Kickoff is 4:30 p.m. MST in Rice-Eccles Stadium. The game will be televised on KJZZ TV and Prime Ticket. The game will also be streamed live on UtahUtes.com. Radio is ESPN700 AM (espn700sports.com), SIRIUS (139) and XM (196).
> Utah has won three of its last four games, beating Pittsburgh, Oregon State and Arizona and losing to Cal.
> Utah has won back-to-back Pac-12 games against Oregon State (at home) and Arizona (in Tucson).
> Utah needs to win one of its last three games to become bowl eligible. Utah has played in a bowl game for the past eight seasons (and nine of the last 11), including six postseason appearances under head coach Kyle Whittingham.
> Utah trails the series with UCLA 8-1, but has the most recent win. On Sept. 15, 2007, with Tommy Grady starting in place of injured Brian Johnson, Utah upset the No. 11-ranked Bruins 44-6 in Rice-Eccles Stadium.
> UCLA leads the series 3-1 in Salt Lake City, winning in 1960, 1962 and 1974, but is 0-1 in Rice-Eccles Stadium (2007). For complete series results and a recap of the 2007 game, see page 2.
> The theme for the game is "Salute America" and the Utah coaches, band, cheerleaders and dance team will wear a special patch in honor of the 70th anniversary of the Tuskegee Airmen, who in World War II were the first African-American military aviators in the United States armed forces.
> After playing on the road in three of the last four weeks, two of Utah's final three regular season games will be played in Salt Lake City (vs. UCLA on Nov. 12 and Colorado on Nov. 25).
Utah offensive coordinator Norm Chow
served in the same role at UCLA from 2008-10 ... Utah freshman receiver Dres Anderson's
father Willie "Flipper" Anderson lettered at UCLA from 1984-87 before embarking on a 10-year NFL career. Dres Anderson
has played in all nine games (starting four) for Utah this season and has 21 receptions for 308 yards (14.7 average) and three touchdowns ... Utah offensive graduate assistant Chris Polizzi
was an intern with the UCLA football program in 2009 and 2010. Polizzi helps coach the Ute tight ends ... Kyle Whittingham
is 1-1 against UCLA, with a loss in the Rose Bowl in the 2006 season opener (31-10) and a win against the No. 11-ranked Bruins in 2007 (44-6).
INSIDE THE HUDDLE
Utah came out of the Arizona game injury free. The Utes have lost seven players for the season to injury, including starting quarterback Jordan Wynn
(shoulder surgery Oct. 20), co-starting fullback/tight end Dallin Rogers
(knee), co-starting safety Keith McGill
(shoulder surgery Oct. 20), co-starting offensive guard Latu Heimuli
(foot), starting punt returner Charles Henderson
(knee) and frequently-used backup linebackers Boo Andersen
(knee surgery Oct. 31) and J.J. Williams
(foot) ... Utah has played five true freshmen this season: safety Eric Rowe
, defensive end Nate Fakahafua
, running back Harvey Langi
, receiver/punt returner Henderson and receiver Quinton Pedroza
OUTSIDE THE LINES
About 200 tickets remain for the UCLA game. Utah has sold out all 10 games in Rice-Eccles Stadium in the last two seasons ... At halftime, there will be a red, white and blue balloon release and the Utah marching band will perform a special salute to the armed forces.
The Utes are 5-0 in games when they lead after three quarters ... Utah is winning the scoring battle in every quarter except the third ... The Utes are 5-1 when they score first ... The Utes are also 5-1 when they out-rush the opponent ... Kyle Whittingham
improved to 3-0 against Arizona with last week's win ... The Utes have blocked three punts and one blocked field goal this season.
Utah ranks second in the Pac-12 and 10th in the NCAA in rushing defense (95.44) ... Utah has held five of its nine opponents to under 100 net rushing yards: BYU (11), Oregon State (32), Pittsburgh (70), Arizona State (74), Montana State (75) ... The Utes also rank second in the league in scoring defense (20.67/25th NCAA), pass efficiency defense (117.06/27th NCAA), red zone defense (17-of-25, 68%/T-5th NCAA), opponent fourth-down conversions (4-of-15, 26.7%/T-7th NCAA), turnovers gained (23/T-9th NCAA), interceptions (12/T-15th NCAA), and fumbles recovered (11/T-13th NCAA) ... Utah is third in the league in total defense (340.2/29th NCAA), turnover margin (18 lost, 23 gained, 0.56/27th NCAA) and sacks (2.8/T-17th NCAA).
John White rushed for 109 yards and two touchdowns, becoming the 11th player in school history to gain 1,000 yards in a season, to lead Utah past Arizona 34-21. Utah won the turnover battle 3-0 and the Ute defense created back-to-back takeaways in the fourth quarter. The second occurred on first and goal on the Utah 2-yard line and the Utes clinging to a 27-14 lead, when Conroy Black
intercepted a pass in the end zone and returned it 57 yards. Black's return set the stage for Utah's game-clinching drive, which culminated with an 11-yard touchdown run by White with 2:50 remaining. Greg Bird
blocked two punts and Matt Martinez
made an interception to go with his team-leading eight tackles. Jon Hays
tied his career high by passing for 199 yards--79 of those to DeVonte Christopher