HEAD COACH KYLE WHITTINGHAM
Bryant Awards committee.
As the country’s only undefeated FBS team in 2008, Utah beat four top-25
teams, including two that finished in the top 10. In addition to his national awards,
Whittingham was named the Mountain West Conference Coach of the Year. His
success has continued in the Pac-12 Conference where Utah won the South Division
title outright in 2018 and 2019 and shared it with USC in 2015.
A five-time semifinalist for the George Munger Coach of the Year Award (2014-16,
2018-19), Whittingham has coached 18 All-Americans, including six consensus
picks. He has coached the only major national award
winners in Utah football history with three Ray Guy
Award winners (2014-16), a Lou Groza Award winner
(2017) and a Ted Hendricks Award winner to his credit.
In addition to his head coaching responsibilities, Whittingham
coaches Utah’s punters and kickers.
Whittingham’s players have won a total of 89 firstteam
all-conference awards, including 38 in Utah’s
nine seasons of Pac-12 play. Utah led the Pac-12 in
first-team all-conference players in both 2018 (9)
and 2019 (8). Utah captured its first league offensive
player of the year honor in 2019 with running
back Zack moss. Utes have also captured the Morris
Trophy four times (DT Lowell Lotulelei in 2011, DE
Nate Orchard in 2014, OL Isaac Asiata in 2016 and DL
Bradlee Anae in 2019). The Morris Trophy recognizes
the Pac-12’s best lineman as voted on by the starting
linemen on the other teams.
Prior to joining the Pac-12, Whittingham coached
a Mountain West Conference MVP in five-straight
seasons: Defensive Players of the Year Morgan
Scalley (2004) and Eric Weddle (2005 and 2006),
Special Teams Player of the Year Louie Sakoda (2006,
2007, 2008), and Offensive Player of the Year Brian
Whittingham has a reputation for developing NFL
talent. A school-record eight NFL draft picks from
Utah in 2017 led the Pac-12 and tied for third in the
country. In 2010, six Utes were drafted, which tied
for fourth nationally. Five Utes were drafted in 2019,
including both Wishnowsky and Gay—marking the
first time since 1985 that a punter and a kicker from
the same school were drafted in the same year. As an
assistant or head coach, 86 of Whittingham’s players
have signed contracts with NFL teams (50 draft
picks, including 13 first or second-round selections,
and 36 undrafted free agents).
Utah has also excelled academically under Whittingham.
Utah football received public recognition
from the NCAA for posting a multi-year Academic
Progress Report (APR) in the top 10 percent of all
athletic teams in the country from 2014-18, including
a perfect single-year APR score of 1000 in 2017-18.
The American Football Coaches Association gave Utah
an Academic Achievement Award in 2017 and 2019
for recording a perfect 100-percent NCAA Graduation
Success Rate (GSR).
Whittingham began his coaching career in 1985-
86 as a graduate assistant at his alma mater,
Brigham Young. He also coached at College of Eastern
Utah in 1987, before a six-year stint at Idaho
State from 1988-93.
A linebacker for BYU from 1978-81, Whittingham
earned first-team all-WAC and WAC Defensive Player of
the Year honors in 1981. He played in the first four Holiday Bowls and was named
Defensive MVP of the 1981 game. In 2009, he was inducted into the Holiday Bowl
Hall of Fame. He played professionally with the Denver Broncos (1982 training
camp) and the U.S. Football League’s (USFL) Denver Gold (1983) and New Orleans
Breakers (1984). He played on the Los Angeles Rams’ replacement squad in 1987.
84 DECEMBER 31, 2019 / OFFICIAL GAME PROGRAM