Feb. 1, 2006
Quotes from Kyle Whittingham's press conference regarding Utah's 2006 football signing class will be available on Wednesday, February 1.
Coach Whittingham on the day's events: "Things went as expected this morning. There were no surprises either way, good or bad. It went as we thought it would. We had all the letters in our hands by about 10:30 a.m. We're extremely pleased that there were no glitches."
Coach Whittingham on the 2006 signing class: "We think it is a solid group, top to bottom. I know there is a little bit of a trend toward picking out the headliners in a group. We're not going to do that here. We feel it is a great class all the way across the board. We're extremely pleased with what we came away with in this year's recruiting class."
Coach Whittingham on where the recruits came from: "This was a class that was made up from eight states. We were heavy in-state, right here in Utah, and in California. Those were the two top states. We had Michigan, Washington, Arizona, Nevada, Hawaii. It was quite a broad spectrum of states that were represented."
Coach Whittingham on in-state recruiting: "It was a great year in-state. We're extremely pleased with what we were able to accomplish in the state of Utah. It was an exceptional year in the state. We thought it was perhaps the best year in the state of Utah as far as Division I football players. We were able to capitalize on that and land a bunch of them."
Coach Whittingham on the number of linemen signed: "We were obviously heavy in the lines That wasn't really by accident. We were heavy in the skill positions in '05. This was a situation where we were more geared to the offensive and defensive lines. We came away with eight defensive linemen and four or five offensive linemen. It is a good situation. You win up front. You can never be caught shorthanded in the front, so that was a good re-stocking and replenishing of our offensive and defensive lines this year."
Coach Whittingham on the reason for Utah's recruiting success this year: "There are several rating systems out there. This is by far, at least to my knowledge, the highest ranked recruiting class Utah has ever achieved. I think the reason, first and foremost, is the work ethic of our assistant coaches. They are excellent recruiters, they work hard, they pay attention to detail, they hustle and they care about what they're doing. With out assistant coaches and our football operations director Shane Schutt and our assistant operations director Mark Anderson, I couldn't ask for a better, more hard-working group of people to scour the country for football players and get them signed up at the University of Utah."
Coach Whittingham on the effect of this class: "Recruiting has a residual effect. The full effect of this class won't be felt until 2-3 years down the road. There will be a few guys who emerge and play for us this year. Who those guys are, we don't know yet. We'll see how things develop in training camp. We feel good about things right now, but we'll have to wait and see how things pan out. Recruiting is far from an exact science."
Coach Whittingham on the defensive line: "We got eight front guys on defense and we like them all. Somebody told me the other day that we were the fourth-ranked defensive line class in the country. We had three in the top 50 and four in the top 70. If people are going to play early, you might find it coming from the defensive line."
Coach Whittingham on the team's success and its effect on recruiting: "The success we've had in the last three years is a big part of it. That's another reason for the successful class this year. The residual effect of (the Fiesta Bowl), coming into this year, people already know what we're about and have seen the success the year before. That got us into a lot more doors than we ordinarily would have gotten into, espeically out of state. Of course the Emerald Bowl this year didn't hurt our cause either. That was a big plus for us."
Coach Whittingham on not having a quarterback in this class: "We did not take a quarterback. We went from the outhouse to the penthouse as far as quarterbacks last year, as far as bodies and quality. We only had Brian (Johnson) on scholarship last year. We recruited Kevin Dunn and Brett Ratliff in last year's class with the intention of recruiting one in this year's class. Then Tommy Grady showed up on our doorstep and that filled that slot. We were happy as heck to have him as the 'signee' for this class as far as the quarterback position goes."
Coach Whittingham on competing with BCS schools for recruits: "Just about everybody we recruited had BCS school offers, from the Pac-10 and Big 10. It's amazing that was our competition this year. Other than in-state competition with BYU, we had very few competitive situations with Mountain West schools, it was all BCS schools. That's good thing."