They went from being winless in conference play to contending for the Pac-12 South title. Kyle Whittingham went from having people question his program’s trajectory to earning a national coaching award. The receivers went from being a liability to a capable, playmaking group when needed. Now comes the tricky part: following up their first defeat of a Top 25 team in three years with another strong showing. Arizona is in town Friday night, introducing an element of paranoia into the mild case of euphoria surrounding the program. The Wildcats historically have a way of derailing the Utes, just when they’re getting good. Utah wants consistency, not complacency. The Utes need to build momentum, instead of regressing. They responded well from start to finish at Stanford after two frustrating losses, but can they deal with a dose of success? “That’s always part of the equation every year,” said Whittingham, who’s the first Pac-12 coach this season … [Read more...] about Can Utah follow through on its strong performance at Stanford? Arizona has a history of stepping on the Utes’ momentum.
By Matt Kawahara Updated 6:29 pm PST, Sunday, December 23, 2018 Chicago Bears' Khalil Mack rushes against San Francisco 49ers' Joe Staley in 4th quarter during Bears' 14-9 win in NFL game at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif. on Sunday, December 23, 2018. Chicago Bears' Khalil Mack rushes against San Francisco 49ers' Joe Staley in 4th quarter during Bears' 14-9 win in NFL game at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif. on Sunday, December 23, 2018. Photo: Scott Strazzante / The Chronicle Photo: Scott Strazzante / The Chronicle Image 1 of / 12 Caption Close Image 1 of 12 Chicago Bears' Khalil Mack rushes against San Francisco 49ers' Joe Staley in 4th quarter during Bears' 14-9 win in NFL game at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif. on Sunday, December 23, 2018. Chicago Bears' … [Read more...] about Former Raiders DE Khalil Mack ‘blessed’ to be with playoff-bound Bears
By Matt Schneidman | [email protected] | Bay Area News Group PUBLISHED: December 23, 2018 at 6:16 pm | UPDATED: December 23, 2018 at 6:16 pm SANTA CLARA — Khalil Mack turned the corner after his shower, stopped, and observed the swarm of cameras already crowding his locker. The man of the hour played his first game in the Bay Area on Sunday, albeit not against the Raiders, since Oakland traded him to the Bears on Sept. 1. Mack is a defensive player of the year candidate and his Bears (11-4) are NFC North champions. He couldn’t be happier with his new team. But that doesn’t mean he holds anything against his old one, or even the coach he never spoke with face-to-face in the eight months both were Raiders. In a small semi-circle with Raiders beat writers following Chicago’s 14-9 win over the 49ers, Mack told us to watch after his old teammates and asked how Jon Gruden was doing. He didn’t have anything negative to say about the Raiders … [Read more...] about Khalil Mack on the Raiders: ‘Those my brothers over there’
By Jon Wilner | [email protected] | Bay Area News Group PUBLISHED: December 23, 2018 at 12:13 am | UPDATED: December 23, 2018 at 12:14 am Insta-reaction to Pac-12 developments on and off the field (and court) … 1. The Pac-1. Another dark Saturday, with one notable exception: Arizona State remains the flag-bearer, the one-eyed team in this conference of the blind. As UCLA went the face-plant route again … as Washington State fell to San Diego … as Colorado lost to Indiana State … as Stanford stumbled at USF … and as Arizona needed a last-minute 3-pointer to beat UC Davis … the Sun Devils took down No. 1 Kansas. They did so despite missing nearly as many free throws as they made and with Luguentz Dort shooting 3-of-14 from the field. ASU has now beaten Kansas in back-to-back Decembers. This time last year, the Devils were 12-0 and ranked No. 3. Now, they’re merely 9-3 and likely headed for the top-12 in the upcoming AP poll. Based … [Read more...] about Saturday Night Five: Arizona State does it again; so does UCLA; Khalil Tate’s return looms large
There had been speculation Tate could seek a transfer or possibly enter the NFL Draft by Tom Fornelli @TomFornelli moments ago • 1 min read Khalil Tate will be back at Arizona next season. There had been speculation that Tate could look to transfer, or possibly leave for the NFL Draft, but the Arizona Daily Star reported Wednesday that after a meeting with coach Kevin Sumlin, Tate has decided to remain with the Wildcats.Tate exploded onto the scene during the 2017 season when Rich Rodriguez was still Arizona's coach. He didn't begin the season as the team's starting quarterback but took over for Brandon Dawkins as the starter in the Wildcats' fifth game of the season against Colorado. He would finish the season passing for 1,591 yards and 14 touchdowns, but he was a revelation as a runner, rushing for 1,411 yards and 12 touchdowns. His performance had earned him some buzz as a Heisman Trophy candidate entering the 2018 season, but then Rodriguez … [Read more...] about Quarterback Khalil Tate to remain at Arizona for the 2019 college football season