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Thursday, September 15, 2011

Holy War Football In Provo Saturday

There will be a big football game in Provo Saturday evening, when Brigham Young University hosts the University of Utah. The teams have been intense rivals over the years and the game is always exciting.

Kickoff will be at 7:15 pm. Traffic will be very heavy along I-15 and University Parkway before and after the game. I-15 has considerable construction between Salt Lake and Provo, and so there is potential for major slowdowns.

The area around LaVell Edward Stadium will be packed with people.

In past years, BYU had Utah have played near the end of the season. The two teams have usually been in the hunt for conference championships and the game has often been pivotal, heightening emotions. Now, Utah has moved into the Pac-12 and BUY is independent, so the game will have no impact on conference standings. Still, the bragging rights and status at stake will make the game interesting.

In fact, the BYU/Utah rivalry has been one of the most intense in the country.

The Washington Post has this good preview of the game. Below are excerpts.

Not much figures to change this year in the BYU-Utah rivalry, even if Saturday night’s showdown will mark the first time in 113 years the teams will play as non-conference opponents.

“It’s still as big as ever,” Utah quarterback Jordan Wynn said of the rivalry, which has served as the regular-season finale in 28 of the last 32 years.

Both teams are 1-1 and coming off tough road losses, with new coordinators trying to get their respective offenses moving.

The Utes had a chance to tie Saturday’s inaugural Pac-12 game against USC only to see a last-second field goal attempt blocked and returned for a touchdown.

BYU blew a 13-3 halftime lead and fell 17-16 to Texas.

... More uncertain is whether the rivalry will continue, what with all the conference re-alignment talk.

“I’m not sure if it will,” Utah coach Kyle Whittingham said. “A rivalry that’s been around this long and so intense and so competitive, you’d like to see it continue but will it is anybody’s guess.”

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