The last time a North Dakota team came to Salt Lake City it was for a matchup against a different PAC-12 opponent. The Fighting Hawks basketball team faced the nationally ranked Arizona Wildcats. While the game was close in the first half, the Power 5 school eventually prevailed in the second half at Vivint Smart Home Arena. The Finnish big man Lauri Markannen played more nasty than the taste of an old dish of pickled herring (a native dish in his country).
That being said, a similar result is expected to happen tomorrow. North Dakota won a lot of games last year. They won 9 to be exact. The Utes did as well but they faced much stiffer competition in the PAC-12.
The BIG 3GOALS:
1. Don’t look like the Cougars did against Portland State. At the same time don’t reveal your full playbook until Conference play comes along.
2. Troy Taylor, make Tyler Huntley make you look good. You chose his upside over the experienced senior team captain in Troy Williams. Maybe the quarterbacks team was only big enough for one Troy and that’s you. Prove that Kyle made the right choice to hire you and that he should keep you in a job that hasn’t exactly been stable lately.
3. Fans, find a good place to eat. Tailgating is great but there is more to life than beer and brats. One particularly good Italian restaurant with a location at City Creek Mall and another in Downtown Salt Lake City is Brio. If you go there you will be most impressed and a Utah Utes victory dinner will be well worth the pasta carbs you will likely want to burn this Labor Day weekend.
It’s time to relax for Utah. They aren’t going to Madison to face Wisconsin like their little brother Utah State Aggies. They’re not going to New Orleans to face a team motivated after a Hurricane Harvey that was way bigger than Harvey Unga. They get a double digit victory that they should enjoy while they still can, for next week they go to battle at the Holy War in Provo.
Somebody needs to grab their lucky red socks for a magical seventh straight victory over their rivals.