No. 11 Utah lost to No. 6 Ohio State in a game at the Rose Bowl on Saturday – a back-and-forth, record-breaking match that eventually saw the Buckeyes kick a goal in the last second to win 48 -45.
Ohio State was largely unstoppable as the quarterback CJ Stroud (37 of 46 passes, 573 yards, six touches) and Jaxon Smith-Njigba (15 tackles, 347 yards, three passes) touch the ball) Utes’ second shine. But Utah coach Kyle Whittingham certainly didn’t support his team’s efforts; he refused to use any of his three timeouts as the Buckeyes darted into range with the time dwindling.
Utah tries to equalize 45-45 with 1:54 remaining – plenty of time for Stroud and Smith-Njigba to continue attacking the Utes defence. The Buckeyes take over at their 42nd age with 1:47 left after the 33-yard warm-up second leg. They moved methodically, never facing a third, and moved into goal – Utah’s 23 – with 59 seconds remaining.
At the time, Utah fans and neutral college football observers wondered why Whittingham refused to call out time – or let the Buckeyes score – to save time for a last-minute comeback. The most egregious example of bad time management was after running backwards TreVeyon Henderson ran nine yards and first down Utah 2. Whittingham allowed about 14 seconds to tick the clock, prompting Ohio State to call the time. final timeout with 12 seconds remaining in Regulations.
The Buckeyes kicked on goal in the next game, leaving nine seconds and three timeouts for Utah’s final game. That hit, however, never happened, as England return player Covey – who completed the kick for a touchdown earlier in the game – only made a nine-yard return hit. play before the offense can return to the field.
When asked after the game about his strategy, Whittingham simply said he would use his timeout if Utah could put Ohio State behind the series. According to Josh Furlong of KSL.com:
Whittingham says they will use the timeout if they get them behind the line. He didn’t want to help them, but Utah couldn’t stop them.
– Josh Furlong (@JFurKSL) January 2, 2022
Whittingham’s late-game clock management will be central to Utah’s loss, but Utes played admirably against Ohio State, where not many started, including several who opted out of the game. play in preparation for the NFL Draft. Utah defender Cameron Risner was injured late in the fourth half, forcing freshman Bryson Barnes to step up to the top of the team while seven points behind.
Barnes ended up being too efficient on Utes’ last drive. He moved them 57 yards in six innings and 2:20 in game time. He completed both of his passes in the driveway, including a 15-yard touchdown to close junior Dalton Kincaid for the match score. Utah simply left too much time on the clock.