Remembering Number 22: A Utah Football Season That Will Never Be Forgotten

Jan 1, 2022, 12:49 PM

PASADENA, Calif. – Football is a game of numbers.

Stat sheets are filled with them but for this Utah football team – one number matters more than every other.

The number 22.

Ahead of the season, 22 was little more than a number to most. But to Utah players and coaches, it had already come to mean everything.

The number of a teammate – gone too soon. And a number given new life – on the back of a friend. Still, no one knew how much more that number would come to mean in the coming weeks.

Before the fourth quarter of the first game of the season, the 22 portal at Rice Eccles Stadium became the L-L-T-J Portal. Minutes later, on the Utes’ first play of the fourth, Charlie Brewer connected with Solomon Enis on a 22-yard pass.

Then tragedy struck the team again. Another heartbreaking moment. The moment L-L-T-J turned into T-J -A-L.

The Utes took the field for the first time since the loss of their second teammate with a dominating performance against USC. Quarterback Cam Rising threw 22 completions.

Two days later – the team paid their final respects to their friend and brother.

Retiring the number 22 in their game against UCLA, the Utes ended the night with 44 points, 22 for Ty, and 22 for Aaron.

Despite a rough start to the season, Utah turned things around. Taking tragedy and turning it into triumph.

A punt return from the 22 helped secure their spot in the Pac-12 Championship game.

Where another 22 yard pass Β – helped dissolve any doubt that the team was destined to win the trophy.

Maybe it was all coincidence.

Maybe it was more.

But on this – this first day of 2022, the Utes look to forever lock in the legacy of Ty Jordan, Aaron Lowe, and a season that will never be forgotten.

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Remembering Number 22: A Utah Football Season That Will Never Be Forgotten