Utes Bulletin: Things Happening In Utah Athletics (Week Of 3/27/23)
Mar 27, 2023, 11:14 AM
SALT LAKE CITY – Spring football is in full-swing while several of the smaller sports are also in progress and having success, making a one-stop-shop for little tidbits of Utah Athletics information necessary with the Utes Bulletin.
If you missed any of the highlights from the previous week, you can review that here.
Without further ado, here is this week’s Utes Bulletin that includes ranking updates, upcoming events for the week, and important dates to keep track of among other items of interest concerning Utah Athletics for the week of 3/27/23.
𝗨𝘁𝗮𝗵 𝗔𝘁𝗵𝗹𝗲𝘁𝗶𝗰𝘀 𝗧𝗵𝗶𝘀 𝗪𝗲𝗲𝗸
🎟️ https://t.co/pL7bwJAt8N#GoUtes pic.twitter.com/J0MJNS5o2J
— Utah Athletics (@utahathletics) March 27, 2023
Utah Women’s Basketball
Utah women’s basketball is a wrap for 2022-23, and what a great season it was. Yes, the ladies lost in heartbreaking fashion to LSU in the Sweet 16, but the great moments far-outweighed the bad ones for Utah and there is a lot of confidence and hype about what they could do next season.
A great season comes to an end at the #Sweet16 for @UTAHWBB. They’ll be back next year.#GoUtes #MarchMadness pic.twitter.com/q2uy1Qpkxw
— Michelle Bodkin (@BodkinKSLsports) March 24, 2023
Before leaving for Greenville, South Carolina last week, Alissa Pili joined Hans and Scotty G. to discuss Utah’s budding culture and how it helped propel them to new heights this past season.
Utah football is back (sort of), and we couldn’t be more excited. The Utes wrapped up their first week of spring practices and it seems to have been a positive and productive affair for the back-to-back Pac-12 Champs. The Utes will have continued media availability this week on Tuesday and Thursday.
All about 𝗳𝘂𝗻𝗱𝗮𝗺𝗲𝗻𝘁𝗮𝗹𝘀, 𝘁𝗲𝗰𝗵𝗻𝗶𝗾𝘂𝗲, & 𝗽𝗵𝘆𝘀𝗶𝗰𝗮𝗹𝗶𝘁𝘆 pic.twitter.com/dJSiyceSRN
— Utah Football (@Utah_Football) March 26, 2023
Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham opened camp last Tuesday by talking in-depth to the media about what he was seeing out their guys very early on, and some of the goals they hope to accomplish through spring. There were a few prominent themes that the coaches and players discussed throughout the first week, including but not limited to having their eyes on a three-peat.
Some Clarity About Notre Dame
In the lead-up to Utah’s spring ball, it appeared the Utes might be short an OC and offensive line coach as it became clear Notre Dame was interested in Andy Ludwig and Jim Harding. Early in the process it felt like it was a foregone conclusion that both were gone, until it wasn’t, that is.
Both Ludwig and Harding set the record straight on what happened from their perspective and interestingly enough it sounds a bit different than what the initial reports were saying.
Pro Day: Check, Next Stop: 2023 NFL Draft
Utah welcomed back 11 former Utes last week to participate in Pro Day in front of 31 of the NFL’s 32 teams. The boys didn’t disappoint.
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Braeden Daniels, Dalton Kincaid and Clark Phillips III took a minute after workouts wrapped up to discuss being at the NFL Combine, competing at Pro Day, and the rest of the 2023 NFL Draft process.
The Red Rocks had a “week off” last week in preparation for regionals coming up this weekend on March 30 and April 1 in Los Angeles.
Utah will square off against No. 12 Auburn, Southern Utah, and Washington at Pauly Pavilion on Thursday at 3:00 p.m. MT in hopes of advancing to Saturday’s showdown that will start at 6:00 p.m. MT and determine who advances to Nationals.
While the Red Rocks weren’t competing last week, it doesn’t mean it was completely quiet either.
Maile O’Keefe was crowned Specialist of the Year in the Pac-12 while also receiving All-Pac-12 Honors along with Cristal Isa, Jaedyn Rucker, and Kara Eaker.
4️⃣ Red Rocks have earned 𝐀𝐥𝐥-𝐏𝐚𝐜-𝟏𝟐 𝐇𝐨𝐧𝐨𝐫𝐬! 🙌@JaedynRucker – Vault@cristal_isaa – Beam, Bars (Honorable Mention)@maile_okeefe – Bars & Beam@_karaeaker – Beam
🔗 | https://t.co/shvXQXGX9n#trUSt | #Pac12 pic.twitter.com/556K5ZyYWf
— Utah Gymnastics (@UtahGymnastics) March 21, 2023
O’Keefe, Eaker, Isa, and Rucker were also recognized by WCGA as All-American selections last week. O’Keefe and Eaker earned First Team All-American honors while Isa and Rucker were named Second Team.
More off-season movement continued for the Runnin’ Utes last week which should come to no surprise to anyone.
Branden Carlson finally revealed he intends to dip his toes in the NBA waters but will keep his college eligibility intact if it doesn’t go how he wants.
— Branden Carlson (@ballerbranden35) March 23, 2023
The same day Carlson made his announcement, teammate Lazar Stefanovic entered the NCAA Transfer Portal becoming the fourth Ute to do so. (Jaxson Brenchley, Bostyn Holt, and Mike Sanders Jr. have also hit the portal.) It was widely believed Stefanovic was a player Utah hoped to keep and that his announcement came as a bit of a surprise to the staff.
It hasn’t all been bad news for the Utes though. They got their first commitment for the 2023-24 class in Colorado transfer Lawson Lovering.
Lovering comes to the Utes as a true big with lots of potential and the belief he can be a great replacement for Carlson if he does in fact leave for the NBA or complement Carlson if he ends up back with the Utes for one more season.
The No. 19 Utes ended up not playing over the weekend due to weather and have moved their contest with Weber State April 11. Utah is still scheduled to take on Utah Valley this Tuesday weather permitting.
While the cancelled game is disappointing, what isn’t disappointing is Ellessa Bonstrom and Aliya Belarde. Bonstrom currently sits in the top 10 in the Pac-12 in homers, RBIs, stolen bases, runs scored, on-base percentage and slugging while Belarde has 42 hits so far in 2023, tying her for the lead in the PAC-12.
Aliya Belarde has racked up 42 hits so far in 2023, a total that is tied for the lead in the PAC-12!
Aliya and her teammates will be back at home on Tuesday to take on Utah Valley at 4 p.m!#GoUtes pic.twitter.com/ThuIFNmf0b
— Utah Softball (@Utah_Softball) March 25, 2023
Utah lacrosse is finding their groove sitting 2-0 in ASUN play and 3-4 overall after defeating Detroit Mercy on their turf 24-11. In the process of victory, Utah also broke a ton of their own records making for a very good weekend.
For anyone keeping track…
✅ School record 2⃣4⃣ goals
✅ School record 9⃣ goals in a quarter
✅ School record 1⃣3⃣ goals in a half
✅ School record 2⃣7⃣ team FO wins
✅ School record 7⃣8⃣ career goals for Hyde
✅ School record 2⃣6⃣ FO wins for Bramshttps://t.co/gittizdBpX pic.twitter.com/uswcKKD7Wy
— Utah Lacrosse (@UtahLacrosse) March 25, 2023
The Utes are currently sitting 2-0 against No. 9 Stanford with one more game to go today at 1:05 p.m. MT. Utah currently sits 2-6 in conference and 10-13 overall.
𝐍𝐞𝐰 𝐰𝐞𝐞𝐤 starts with a brand 𝐧𝐞𝐰 𝐨𝐩𝐩𝐨𝐫𝐭𝐮𝐧𝐢𝐭𝐲
⚾ at No. 7 Stanford
📍 Sunken Diamond
⌚ 1:05 PM MT
📊 https://t.co/kIJlKHtK78#GoUtes pic.twitter.com/DYFkcIIoBN
— Utah Baseball (@utahbaseball) March 27, 2023
Lauren McCluskey Documentary
ESPN announced the airing of an all-new documentary on the murder of Utah track and field star Lauren McCluskey that will air this Tuesday on ESPN+. There will be a supplementary 20/20 episode on the documentary and its findings aired this Friday.
Michelle Bodkin is the Utah Utes Insider for KSLsports.com and host of both the Crimson Corner Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and The Saturday Show (Saturday from 10 a.m.–12 p.m.) on The KSL Sports Zone. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram: @BodkinKSLsports
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