UW Huskies Insider

Meet the (PAC-12 bound?) Utah Utes

Post by Don Ruiz / The News Tribune on June 16, 2010 at 6:45 pm with 6 Comments »
June 17, 2010 9:27 am

The Pac-10 today invited the University of Utah to join the league. The university board of trustees will meet Thursday morning to decide, and a press conference will follow around noon.

Here’s a quick look at what is likely to be the conference’s 12th member:

Salt Lake City, Utah.
Nickname: Utes, officially adopted in 1972 and used with the permission of the Ute Tribal Council.
Colors: Crimson and white.
Athletic traditions: The school competes with Brigham Young and Utah State for the Beehive Boot. The “Block U” was built in the foothills bordering the campus 103 years ago and is illuminated for athletic events. The student fan club, called the MUSS, does the “third-down jump,” making noise even time the opposing football team faces a third down. The Pride of Utah Marching Utes perform the “Utah Man Fight Song.”
Football: 605-420-31 in its 116-year history. Utes are 12-3 in bowl games, including wins over Alabama and Pittsburgh in its two BCS bowl appearances. Five top-25 finishes, including a No. 2 ranking in 2008 and No. 4 in 2004. Went 10-3 last season.
Men’s basketball: Won 1944 national championship and finished as runner-up in 1998. Nine Sweet 16 appearances. Eleventh nationally in all-time victories and winning percentage. Twenty-nine conference titles. Thirty-five NCAA tournament victories in 27 appearances. Went 14-17 last season.
Other sports: Only school ever to produce the No. 1 NFL and NBA draft picks in the same year: quarterback Alex Smith and center Andrew Bogut. Gymnastics team has 10 national titles. Men and women’s ski teams have 10 national titles. Women’s basketball has averaged over 20 wins per season since 1974. Softball team has qualified for NCAA tournament 18 times. Women’s soccer has made the tournament five of the last eight seasons.
Athletic website: utahutes.cstv.com.
Prominent alumni: Pong inventor Nolan Bushnell, Pixar Animation Studios president Ed Catmull; “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People” author Stephen Covey; former BYU football coach LaVell Edwards; Gore-Tex fabric inventor Bill Gore; Jarvik-7 artificial heart inventor Robert Jarvik; Marriott International founder J. Willard Marriott; two-time Super Bowl-winning coach George Seifert; speed-reading pioneer Evelyn Wood.

Leave a comment Comments → 6
  1. Don’t forget this seasons Nation Rugby Championship ( over Cal )

  2. zombiehooliganfc says:

    Seems like Utah is a better fit that even Colorado. Better winning tradition all over the board and very prominent alumni.

  3. davebaine says:

    So Don, you’ve covered the sports side pretty well. How do they stack up as an academic institution? Are they an “accredited” research institution as the rest of the PAC-10 is?

  4. zombiehooliganfc says:

    Hey Dave,

    Just read the Salt Lake website and they say that Utah is a strong research university, too.

  5. Don Ruiz says:

    Commissioner Larry Scott calls Utah one of the top 100 research universities in the world. However it is not an AAU university (Colorado is, but not all Pac-10 schools are … wsu, for example). Here’s a list:


  6. Don Ruiz says:

    Here is part of what the league and the school had to say on the matter at the press conference today:

    “The University’s high academic excellence ranks it among the top-100 universities in the world and is the only institution in the state to earn a top-tier ranking from the Academic Ranking of World Universities, and has done so for the last five years.

    “Utah is among a network of 52 consortia of universities leading the way in space-related research, including the University of Arizona, Arizona State University, the University of California, Oregon State University, UCLA, USC, Washington and future member Colorado.

    “In addition, Utah ranks among the top public research universities in the nation, with particular distinction in medicine, genetics and engineering. Acclaimed faculty member Mario R. Capecchi was a 2007 Noble Prize winner and will fit in to the roster of 25 Nobel laureates from California and other Pac-10 institutions.”

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