The BYU-Utah Rivalry, also known as the Holy War, is part of a long-standing tradition in Utah, but Saturday's game at Rice-Eccles Stadium in SLC will be the second to last time in the near future that it's played (it won't be played in 2014 or 2015).
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Don't know the answers? Here's a little background on the Holy War to help you make up your mind.
Dating as far back as 1896, there has been nothing but fierce competition between these two schools. Even the beginning date of the rivalry is contested, as BYU has it starting in 1922 when they were officially Brigham Young University as opposed to the University of Utah’s record keeping that goes back to when they played against Brigham Young Academy. This dispute really only changes the impressive totals by six games, but as always, it’s an important six games.
The record stands with Utah in the lead 55–34–4 (or 51-32-4), with the two teams playing this Saturday.
The head coaches are Kyle Whittingham for Utah and Bronco Mendenhall for BYU. Whittingham has been coaching Utah for seven seasons as head coach and Mendenhall has been coaching BYU for seven seasons as head coach.
This rivalry will be sorely missed by the community. Between the fundraising efforts, the food drive and the blood drive, the Holy War has done more than turn grown men into bickering children.
From toilet papered houses and vandalized buildings, to BYU saran wrapping their statues to prevent red glazes and 24 hour guard around their mountaintop letters, there has been no shortage of rivalry heat.
Several years ago, BYU quarterback Max Hall made some scathing comments after a rivalry game at LaVell Edwards Stadium.
“I don't like Utah. In fact, I hate them. I hate everything about them. I hate their program, their fans. I hate everything. It felt really good to send those guys home," Hall said in a press conference. “I think the whole university and their fans and the organization is classless,” he said, continuing the onslaught. “They threw beer on my family and stuff last year and did a whole bunch of nasty things. I don’t respect them and they deserved to lose.”
Naturally, these comments did not sit well with Utah fans (first and foremost, Rice-Eccles stadium is dry) and they answered with colorfully worded signs about Hall’s mother and shirts emblazoned with “Max Hall Hates Me Too” or “Classless”.
Some fans thought that Hall was just a little bitter after their “Quest for Perfection” moved north in 2008, when the Utes went undefeated, including a 48-24 win over BYU.
This Saturday’s game is going to be even more interesting with the recent announcement of Jordan Wynn’s retirement.
The Utes quarterback had been battling injuries over the last two seasons with a total of four shoulder injuries, one of which sidelined him for most of the 2011 season. Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham has a tough call to make now with two stellar back-up quarterbacks, Jon Hayes and Travis Wilson.
Hayes had a strong season last year and the experience could be invaluable. Wilson, as a freshman, hasn’t had the experience but he’s proven that he can deliver. In the first game of the season, Wilson had a touchdown to his credit after just 2 plays.
One thing is for certain though; The MUSS (Mighty Utah Students' Section) will be there in support of the team no matter who is picked, and BYU fans will have their own legion of fans at the game this Saturday as well.