UTAH UTES

Best, Worst, Most Likely Scenarios For Utah Football In 2023

Aug 24, 2023, 8:18 AM

SALT LAKE CITY – Utah football is about to kick off what could be another incredible season for the Utes. Here we take a look at the best case, worst case, and most likely scenarios the team could face in 2023.

Utah is coming off of a historic run that has included four appearances in the Pac-12 Championship in the last five seasons, two back-to-back titles in 2021 and 2022, along with two Rose Bowl appearances.

Needless to say, the Utes have a lot of momentum heading into what has turned out to be their final season in the Pac-12 and the ability to leave a lasting impression on a conference that helped catapult them into the hierarchy of college football. Of course, a lot of that is dependent on doing what Utah does best- playing tough, disciplined football and having a little of that luck the Football Gods sometimes offer up.

 

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Utah Football Best-Case Scenario For 2023

If everything- and I mean everything goes right, Utah football could be in for their best season to date. What do I mean by this?

If these things happen and bounce in the Utes’ favor, it’s hard not to see their best-case scenario being a 10-2 or 11-1 regular season record, return trip to the Pac-12 Championship with a win, and the potential to play in a semifinal for the College Football Playoff.

 

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It is important to remember though, Utah’s schedule on paper looks extra difficult this year and some of the above-mentioned players are coming off of serious injuries.

However, Utah does return a lot of experienced talent along with doing a good job of bolstering weaker areas on their roster through the transfer portal. I doesn’t feel like a stretch this team could reach some new heights if all goes well.

The Worst-Case Scenario For The Utes

Utah could be instore for a disappointing season if exactly the opposite of what was listed above happens.

  • Cam Rising struggles with his injury through the season.
  • Brant Kuithe (read point on Cam Rising).
  • Defense needs a warmup period like last season- has moments of being hot and cold all year.
  • Overall team health does not favor Utah and they have to use a lot of players they weren’t planning on.

In this scenario, Utah would still have a season a lot of teams would kill for but given the level of talent and experience on the team, it would be disappointing for fans. If nothing goes right, Utah finishes the regular season 7-5 or 8-4, misses the Pac-12 Championship, but goes to a lower bowl game and wins.

 

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Interestingly, Utah is in a place where they have enough talent to keep things respectable even with their brutal schedule in the event they don’t get the lucky bounces, but it would still leave Ute fans wondering “what could have been?”

Utah’s Most-Likely Scenario

The good news is that I really believe in Utah’s ability to have a good season in 2023 despite the Pac-12 looking absolutely stacked in its final season as we know it.

It will be no easy feat, but I think Utah will once again be one of the more balanced teams in the Pac-12 both offensively and defensively. I also think the Utes bring back a great roster of talent that has gotten them there before and has better overall team chemistry than most. This group has played A LOT of ball together and that counts for something.

Utah will have to deal with injuries- some that will likely give fans heartburn and certainly won’t be ideal, but I think as long as the injury bug doesn’t get out of control, the Utes are as well equipped to handle that storm as they ever have been.

 

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That said, it still doesn’t change the fact that their schedule looks mighty tough, and even the best of teams slip up on occasion.

I see Utah’s most-likely scenario playing out with either a 9-3 or 10-2 regular season record. They will at the very least be in the Pac-12 Championship hunt till the very end of the season.

In “most-likely world” this Utah team will either just miss that mark, get in and not win, or three-peat. I get it’s a cop-out having a bit of a sliding scale on that, but that’s just how tough I think the Pac-12 is going to be this year. Fans should be pleased Utah will be in the thick of that opportunity all season though.

I also think Utah will either get a New Years Six Bowl, or the level just below, and will break their bowl game win slump they’ve had the past few seasons.

What do you think Utah’s best, worst, and most-likely scenarios for the 2023 season are? Tell us in the comments below.

Michelle Bodkin is the Utah Utes Insider for KSLsports.com and host of both the Crimson Corner Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and The Saturday Show (Saturday from 10 a.m.–12 p.m.) on The KSL Sports Zone. Follow her on TwitterInstagram, and Threads: @BodkinKSLsports

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Best, Worst, Most Likely Scenarios For Utah Football In 2023