Kyle Whittingham is like a lot of coaches. He wants to improve his team, but says he wants to do it with class.
That didn’t entirely happen last Saturday when Utah went into its 2-minute offense at the close of the first half with a 42-0 lead. Yes, the Utes scored again. Weber coaches were incensed that the Utes would run up the score.
Sound familiar? Whittingham was caught in a related bind in 2007 when he executed an onside kick on Wyoming with the Utes ahead 43-0. That prompted Cowboy coach Joe Glenn to direct a familiar hand gesture Whittingham’s way.
War is such dirty business.
In the Glenn incident, there wasn’t much excuse, as Whittingham admitted it later. He did as most coaches do and went for one more. You can never have too much cushion…unless you’re the team that’s trailing. But the Weber State situation is a grayer area.
In one sense Whittingham really could have held back. It would have hurt his preparation for conference play but done much for his reputation.
I’ve seen him pull back in blowout games, inserting reserves quite early. But this one against Weber was scheduled specifically for practice. It’s true the game was over before halftime, so Whittingham was piling on, intentionally or otherwise. But he wasn’t piling on just to do be mean. He wanted to practice his 2-minute offense against real competition.
In a harsh light, that’s what Weber signed up for., isn’t it? It played a Pac-12 school and got $400,000 for doing so. In return, you’re likely to get (a) injuries and (b) humiliation.
If you don’t want those elements, don’t play the game.
In this case I can see both sides of the story. Whittigham should have held off on the 2-minute drill, just to be generous. But Weber should have expected this was coming.
Vote here to let me know where you fall on the issue of piling on.
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