2009 Year in Review: Utah Utes

Utah began the 2009 year shocking the world with a 31-17 victory of the Alabama Crimson Tide.  In 2009 season however, they did about as we expected.

Having to replace 2008 MWC Player of the year Brian Johnson and many other impact players off the 2008 team kept expectations lower of the Utes.  They had to face Oregon, BYU and TCU on the road.  This was not the year Utah was supposed to go undefeated, although it was possible.

Utes Football Schedule

Utah State Thu 09/03 W 35 - 17
@ San Jose St. Sat 09/12 W 24 - 14
@ Oregon Sat 09/19 L 24 - 31
Louisville Sat 09/26 W 30 - 14
@ Colorado St. Sat 10/10 W 24 - 17
@ UNLV Sat 10/17 W 35 - 15
Air Force Sat 10/24 W 23 - 16
Wyoming Sat 10/31 W 22 - 10
New Mexico Sat 11/07 W 45 - 14
@ TCU Sat 11/14 L 28 - 55
San Diego St. Sat 11/21 W 38 - 7
@ BYU Sat 11/28 L 23 - 26
@ California Wed 12/23 W 37 - 27

 

Junior college transfer Terrance Cain won the starting quarterback job after an offseason long battle with Jordan Wynn and Corbin Louks.  He guided Utah to a 2-0 record and kept their winning streak and Top 25 ranking alive until they lost to the Oregon Ducks, 24-31.  

Following the Oregon loss, the Utes won six straight games but it was not easy.  The Terrance Cain led offense struggled to complete drives and put the ball in the end zone.  After close games against Colorado State and Air Force, the coaching staff decided to put the skilled, but inexperienced freshman in at quarterback.  

Jordan Wynn replaced Cain midway through the lackluster Wyoming game and gave the Utes an offensive spark.  Following the Wyoming game, Wynn made his first start against New Mexico and passed for 297 yards and two touchdowns.  Utah finally found their quarterback.

The stage was set for one of the biggest games in MWC history.  The 4th ranked Horned Frogs faced the No. 14 Utes with ESPN College GameDay on hand.   Utah fans expected to keep the game close, if not win.  Utah's defense wouldn't let TCU blow them out like they did BYU.  

We were wrong.  TCU crushed the Utes 55-28.  It was the lowest point of the 2009 season.  The defeated was a wide awakening for  Utah whose goal was to win the Mountain West Conference Championship.

Following the TCU loss, Utah beat SDSU as expected and faced BYU in Provo.  Utah lost another huge game in a tough overtime loss to BYU putting Utah at 9-3 on the season.

One year removed from playing in the Sugar Bowl, Utah finished third in the MWC and was invited to play in the Poinsettia Bowl against an unranked Cal team.  Utah played their best game of the season and beat the Golden Bears, 37-27.

Overall this was a successful season for the Utes.  They had a chance to make a lot of noise against ranked teams, but lost close road games to BYU and Oregon.  Extending the nations longest bowl winning streak was the highlight of the season, along with finding themselves a good, young quarterback.

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