Utah: Facts and Factors

UCLA holds an 8-1 advantage over Utah, but that one loss was a doozy...

-- UCLA travels to Salt Lake City, Utah, to take on the Utah Utes Saturday, at 3:30 (PST). The game will be televised by Prime Ticket, with Bill Macdonald and J.J. Stokes calling the action from the booth.

-- Utah is 5-4 overall, and 2-4 in the Pac-12 South.

-- UCLA is 5-4 and 4-2, which has the Bruins tied for first place in the Pac-12 South.

-- The two programs have played against each other 9 times, UCLA winning eight of the games, with the series dating back to 1933.

-- The last time the two programs met was in 2007, when the #11-ranked Bruins went to SalT Lake City and were pounded by the Utes, 44-6. In that game, UCLA turned over the ball five times, one in which receiver Marcus Everett fumbled the ball while stretching it over the goal line. It was Karl Dorrell's last season.

-- The schools also met in the 2006 season (UCLA winning, 31-10), but before that hadn't played each other since the 1974 and 1973 seasons.

-- UCLA is playing to stay atop the Pac-12 South. With USC (4-2) ineligible to win the conference, and the Bruins having beaten Arizona State (4-2) last week, they control their own destiny. If they beat the Utes, then beat Colorado at home and USC at the Coliseum, UCLA will win the Pac-12 South, even if ASU wins out due to UCLA winning the head-to-head tie-breaker.

-- Utah is coached by Kyle Whittingham, who is in his 7th year at the helm. Whittingham took over the Utah program when Urban Meyer left to coach at Florida, and Whittingham has posted six straight winning seasons, with an overall record of 62-24. He has a three-year streak of double-digit wins going – having gone 13-0 in 2008, 10-3 in 2009 and 10-3 in 2010. His undefeated 2008 team ended the season ranked 4th and 2nd in the polls, beat Alabama in the Sugar Bowl, and Whittingham was named National Coach of the Year by a few different organizations. Before taking over the head coaching job, Whittingham was the Utes defensive coordinator for 10 seasons. Whittingham is 1-1 against UCLA while coaching Utah.

-- Utah's offensive coordinator is, of course, Norm Chow, who was most recently UCLA's offensive coordinator. In fact, UCLA is still paying Chow $500,000 for the season. Chow wasn't successful at UCLA, and there was some talk that he had seen his better days, so to speak. At Utah, his offense is 111th in the country in yards per game.

-- If you look at the two teams' common opponents this season, it's tough to draw any conclusions. UCLA beat both Arizona State and Cal, with Utah losing to both. But Utah last week beat Arizona, in Tucson, where UCLA was embarrassed a few weeks ago.

-- The Utes are 5-0 this season when they lead after three quarters. They are 5-1 in games when they score first.

-- Utah is 78-124-6 all-time against the Pac-12. The only Pac-12 team it hasn't beaten is Washington (0-7). Its second worst record is against UCLA. It also has a losing record against every other Pac-12 school except Arizona (20-15-2) and Washington State (5-5).

-- UCLA quarterback Kevin Prince's 296 rushing yards this season are the most by a Bruin quarterback since Cade McNown ran for 311 in 1995. The school record for a quarterback in a season is 815 by Jeff Dankworth in 1976.

-- The wins for UCLA over Cal and Arizona State are the first back-to-back victories in league play since winning three in a row in 2009 season, over Washington, Washington State and Arizona State.

-- The win over 20th-ranked Arizona State last week was UCLA's first over a ranked conference opponent since 2007 when it posted a win over 9th-ranked Oregon.

-- This is the first time in Rick Neuheisel's four years at UCLA that he has a winning record after 9 games of the season (2008: 3-6; 2009: 4-5; 2010: 4-5).

-- It's also the first time that Neuheisel has a winning conference record nine games into the season (2-4, 1-5, 2-4).

-- If UCLA beats Utah Saturday, it will be just Neuheisel's fourth conference road win at UCLA. He won at Washington in 2008, at Washington State in 2009, and then at Oregon State earlier this season. Those three teams have a combined record of 3-30.

-- Both Utah and UCLA have won two consecutive games for the first time this season in the last two weeks. UCLA beat Cal and Arizona State at home, and Utah beat Oregon State at home and Arizona on the road.

-- The Utes' home is Rice-Ecles-Stadium, which uses field turf and seats 45,017.

-- The weather forecast Saturday for Salt Lake City calls for a high of 49 degrees, with a 40% chance of showers.

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