This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2011, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
Rumors are coming out of Arizona that there is mutual interest between Utah coach Kyle Whittingham and ASU, which is searching for a replacement for Dennis Erickson, whose time as the Sun Devils coach came to an end after five seasons. So should Utah fans be worried? My hunch is no. Whittingham's name continuously comes up when there are openings at major programs, which is no surprise given his success. However, it seems like the Utah program is right where he would want it to be since the Utes are now a member of a BCS conference, have a solid team and continue to build the program on the field and off it. Earlier today Whittingham talked excitedly about the construction that has started on Utah's new $16 million football facility that will take almost two years to complete. The construction will mean the Utes will have just one outside practice field instead of two for a season since one will be used for a staging area, but Whittingham doesn't mind. The new building will be a huge recruiting tool, something the Utes don't have with the Dee Glen Smith Center, which was built in 1991. "Recruits want to see shovels in the ground and we have backhoes in the ground," he said. "It is a good sign for us. The reality of the new building is underway." As for Utah's bowl preparations, Whittingham said he was pleased with the first three days of practice. "You couldn't ask for any more as far as effort and focus," he said. "We're off to a good start." - Lya Wodraska