Utah 2010- Best and Worst Case Scenarios

Can the Utes make a run at a national title? The best and worst case scenarios for the Utes in 2010.

Best Case Scenario

The Utes open the season by blasting Pitt by the same score as their Fiesta Bowl win over the Panthers, 35-7. Jordan Wynn throws for 250 yards and two touchdowns as Matt Asiata and Eddie Wide combine for 170 yards and 2 TDs. The Utah defense holds Hesiman hopeful Dion Lewis to 33 yards on 18 carries.

Consecutive two touchdown plus wins follow the next three weeks against UNLV, New Mexico, and San Jose State.

The Utes take a 4-0 record and #12 ranking into Ames, Iowa against the surprising 22nd ranked Cyclones who have knocked off Iowa, Kansas State and Texas Tech. Despite a rough day from Jordan Wynn, the Utes escape on a last second field goal from Joe Phillips 20-17 and vault into the top 10.

Convincing wins over Wyoming and Colorado State follow before squeaking out another nail biter at Air Force in frigid temperatures 14-13 setting up an showdown at Rice-Eccles between the 6th ranked Utes and 2nd ranked and undefeated TCU. ESPN's College Gameday shows up and calls it the biggest regular season matchup of non-BCS teams ever. Lee Corso puts on a Horned Frogs head and picks TCU to win by two touchdowns. Utah blows out the Frogs 38-10 forcing six TCU turnovers, moving the Utes into the top 3.

Utah gets by a slow Notre Dame team in South Bend despite Jordan Wynn missing the second half with an injury. Terrence Cain looks great in relief throwing for 200 yards and two scores, while running for another.

The San Diego State game is a laugher as the Utes put up over 500 yards of offense and win 56-7 moving to #2 in the polls.

The annual showdown with BYU is all that stands between Utah and a spot in the National Championship Game. The Utes come in 11-0 while BYU is sitting at 5-6, hoping to become bowl eligible. Shaky Smithson returns the opening kick for a touchdown and the flood gates open. Jake Heaps breaks his leg in the first quarter and is replaced by Riley Nelson who does his Max Hall impersonation with 5 picks. The Utes run away with the game 44-10 and move on to the BCS Championship. Max Hall and his family are escorted out of the game midway through and arrested after attempting to pour non-alcoholic beer on Utah fans.

The Utes get #1 ranked Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl for all the marbles. The Buckeyes pull another Ohio State National Championship Game performance and the Utes roll to their first ever title 34-17 behind MVP Jordan Wynn. Wynn is touted as the 2011 Heisman Trophy frontrunner.

Zane Taylor wins the Reminton Award as the top center in the country. Kicker Joe Phillips is a finalist for the Lou Groza Award.

Bronco Mendenhall leaves BYU for the Colorado job. BYU offers Kyle Whittingham their head coaching position for $5 million per season. He turns it down and signs a lifetime deal at Utah. BYU hires Ron McBride.

The Utes pull in a top 10 recruiting class led by Antwaun Woods, Harvey Langi, and Devon Blackmon while BYU struggles to a 40th ranked class.

Jake Heaps does decide to take a mission after all and never comes back, electing to head to UCLA instead.

The Big 12 decides to go back to 12 teams and takes Houston and TCU instead of BYU.

Worst Case Scenario

The Utes look unprepared and lost in their opening game against Pitt and fall 31-16 at home. Terrence Cain takes over for an ineffective Jordan Wynn in the second half drumming up a quarterback controversy.

Wins over UNLV and New Mexico are less than stellar before the Utes finally show some muscle against San Jose State at home under new starter Cain.

The following week turns out to be one of the ugliest in Utah football history as they get blasted by a mediocre Iowa State team 49-10. Cain and Wynn are both benched in favor of Griff Robles after falling behind 35-0 in the third quarter.

Another loss the next week at surprising Wyoming has the Utes at 3-3 and reeling while BYU goes into Fort Worth and knocks off 3rd ranked TCU.

A home win over Colorado State gets things back on track before three straight losses to Air Force, TCU and Notre Dame. The TCU game gets ugly as the Utes are held to 160 yards of offense in the 41-3 loss.

A win at San Diego State leaves Utah at 5-6, needing a win over undefeated and 5th ranked BYU to become bowl eligible. The game is close throughout, but the Utes lead 24-20 deep into the fourth quarter. While trying to run out the clock, Eddie Wide fumbles at the BYU 40 with 38 seconds left. Magic happens and BYU freshman quarterback Jake Heaps leads the Cougars down the field, hitting fellow freshman Ross Apo in the end zone from 16 yards out with no time on the clock sending BYU to a BCS game for the first time. The LDS church declares November 27th a new religious holiday.

The Utes finish 5-7, missing out on a bowl for the first time since 2002.

Jake Heaps becomes the first freshman to ever win the Heisman. Beano Cook declares Heaps the best freshman ever and says he'll win four Heismans.

BYU replaces Oregon in the Rose Bowl after the Ducks head to the BCS Championship Game and beat Iowa. Tom Holmoe says he'd like to come back to the Rose Bowl each year as Pac 10 champs. The Pac 10 rescinds Utah's invite and brings in the Cougars instead.

Bronco Mendenhall leaves to coach the NY Giants. Kyle Whittingham takes the BYU job saying BYU is his dream job. Utah is turned down by all the big coaches and brings back Ron McBride.

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