Staff Selections: Utah at Stanford

The Utes hit the Farm and the staff takes their best guesses

James Cella- Football Analyst
There are plenty of stats that point to a Stanford win. The Cardinal have won their last 5 home finales, they are 10-0 under David Shaw after a loss and Stanford hasn't lost two games in a row for 4 and a half years. It's also noteworthy that Stanford is coming off a bye week as while the Utes are pretty beat up after a grueling couple of weeks against USC, at ASU and Oregon. All that being said, Utah is a grind it out, never-say-die pack of non-quitters going against a quarterback not named Mariota. I like them odds.
Utah 20 Stanford 13

Andrew Gorridge- Foodball Analyst
This game is a real toss up for me. While Stanford is coming off a bye, at home, and has the best defense in the conference, Utah has been tough, resilient and good against teams that don't have the best QB in the country. The key this week will be Dave Christensen creating a winning offensive gameplan. He had one against Oregon before Thompson got injured, and he also had one against USC. ASU and OSU? Not so much. Also, can't Travis Wilson just act like he's always running a 2 minute drill on offense? Hes shown that he's a much better QB when the pressure is on this season. Utah's WR injuries on offense have me concerned. Someone will have to step up, or the offense will have to be extra creative to score on an elite defense. With this being a toss up, I'm going with the team at home, coming off a bye and with the best defense in the conference by 3.
Stanford 20 Utah 17

Robert Jackson- Managing Editor
Lots of reasons to be down on the Utes, who have lost their last two games, one of its starting QBs and two starting WRs. But out of the next 3 games, I think this is the most winnable. Defensive battle plays right into the hands of Kyle Whittingham. Utes are better than they were a year ago, and Stanford isn't nearly as good either. Devontae Booker and Co. get some points on the board, while Nate Orchard and Sack Lake City do enough to thwart a late Stanford rally.
Utah 23 Stanford 17

Jayson Jones- Football Analyst
It will be interesting to see what the gameplan will be with one definitive quarterback running the show. In the matchups vs UCLA and Oregon State you knew there was a plan to bring in the second QB, and this week that's not the case. Against USC you knew there may be a plan to bring in Thompson, but TW was able to get it done. Utah needs to replicate the stat line they had against USC to get out of Palo Alto with a win. Utah has proven they can win on the road already this season and has also won tight, grind it out games as well. I like Utah's front seven to control the line of scrimmage and the secondary to do just enough to slow down Montgomery. This will be a slugfest, and I like the tough Utah D to make plays and be the tougher unit.
Utah 20 Stanford 17

Tom Karren- Editor
Stanford 3 Utah 2

Doug Kimmel- Rocky Mountain Recruiting Analyst
Stanford is coming off of a bye and Utah is coming off of a painful loss. Losing KT and Tim Patrick hurts depth and it may affect the psychology of the team. Without Dres and TP, Utah is even more limited than they were a few weeks ago when the air game was mediocre at best. Stanford is built to stop the run. It doesn't look like a good matchup on paper. Utah is completely one dimensional barring a wrinkle in the play calling by DC. Defensively, Utah could hold Stanford to under 20 normally, but with enough 3 and outs, the D may break eventually. Stanford is not what they have been, but they still have talent and will be motivated after last years crippling defeated at RES.
Stanford 27 Utah 16

Brian Swinney- Publisher
First to 20 wins? These are probably the two best defensive units in the country and this should be a good old fashioned slugfest. Field position and turnovers are going to be the keys here as neither defense will break much. Stanford is 30-2 in their last 32 home games. The fans don't show up, but the home-field advantage is real. If this was at Rice-Eccles, I'd take the Utes. It's not.
Stanford 17 Utah 13

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