Utah Utes News: Football coach Kyle Whittingham Named Dodd Trophy Coach of the Week

Kyle Whittingham (courtesy 247 Sports)

11/22/2021

ATLANTA – Utah Football head coach Kyle Whittingham has been named the Dodd Trophy Coach of the Week, announced today by the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Foundation and Peach Bowl.

Whittingham led the Utes to a 38-7 victory over the No. 3 Oregon Ducks on Nov. 20 to earn the recognition. The Dodd Trophy Coach of the Week award honors a football coach who led his team to a significant victory during the previous week, while also embodying the award’s three pillars of scholarship, leadership and integrity.

The win in front of a record crowd in Rice-Eccles Stadium was the highest-ranked victory in RES, also ranking as the highest-ranked win for the Utes against a College Football Playoff-ranked opponent since the CFP was established in 2014. Utah claimed its fourth Pac-12 South title with the victory with Whittingham becoming the all-time wins leader for the Utes (142-69).

Utah’s 38 points is the most the Ducks have given up this season with the Utes holding them to just one touchdown, the first time for Oregon since 2018. Utah dominated from start to finish on both sides of the ball, producing 386 yards on offense while holding Oregon to 294.

Oregon entered the game ranked first in the conference in rushing defense and had only been allowing 121.2 per game, but the Utes stuck to the ground game tonight with 208 yards on the ground and four rushing touchdowns. On defense, the Utes were going against the No. 10-ranked rushing offense in the country, but held the Ducks to 63, the least amount by Oregon since they had 61 against Stanford in 2019.

The Utes held Oregon scoreless in the first half, holding them to just 39 yards of total offense in the first quarter and 1-of-6 on third down conversions through the first two quarters. Utah kept the Ducks quiet in the second half as well with Oregon producing negative rushing yardage in the third quarter and just 66 yards of total offense in the fourth.  

Cameron Rising led Utah’s well-balanced attack tonight by going 10-of-18 passing for 178 yards through the air, also scoring one of Utah’s four rushing touchdowns.

It would be Tavion Thomas who would score the other three, rushing 21 times for 94 yards (4.5 ypc) and his fifth multi-touchdown game of the season. Brant Kuithe recorded his first 100-yard receiving game of the season against the Ducks, bringing in five receptions for 118 yards, averaging 23.6 yards per catch.

Britain Covey led the Utes in all-purpose yards, racking up a season-high 191 yards. He notched 90 on punt returns, 59 on kickoff returns, 36 on receptions and six on his only rush of the game.

Defensively, Cole Bishop would lead the Utes in tackles for the second straight game, getting seven stops (1.0 TFL), two pass breakups and a blocked field goal. Vonte Davis also recorded seven total tackles while Junior Tafuna would lead the defensive line with three tackles that included 1.5 sacks.
Utah returns to action on Friday, Nov. 26 when it hosts the Colorado Buffaloes for its regular season finale. The Utes will kickoff at 2 p.m. MT on FOX with the Senior Day celebration taking place pregame.

COURTESY UTAH ATHLETIC COMMUNICATIONS

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