Utah Football’s Kyle Whittingham Opens Up About ‘Day-to-Day’ Retirement Decision

The Utah football team has a big season ahead of them as they make the move from the Pac-12 to the Big 12. Conference realignment is one of the biggest stories in college football right now, and the Utes are being affected by it. Another big story surrounding the Utah football team is their head coach, Kyle Whittingham, and his impending retirement. Whittingham has made it clear that he will be retiring soon, and the Utes have even named a replacement.

This current situation with Kyle Whittingham is unique. We don’t usually see a coach handle his retirement this way. Utah football will have defensive coordinator Morgan Scalley take over when Whittingham retires, but it’s unclear when that will be.

“Once I lose my passion and my energy for it, you have to step aside,” Whittingham said, according to an article by ESPN. “I missed my children so much growing up, and I don’t want to put my grandchildren through the same thing. I want to be there and involved.”

Whittingham currently has 10 grandchildren. It’s unclear what will be the deciding factor that pushes him to end it at this point, but it sounds like it could happen at any time.

Utah Utes head coach Kyle Whittingham speaks to the media during Big 12 Media Days at Allegiant Stadium.
© Candice Ward-USA TODAY Sports

Kyle Whittingham has confidence in Morgan Scalley

Sooner or later, Morgan Scalley will be the new head coach of the Utah football team. Scalley currently serves as the defensive coordinator and has been heavily involved with the program. Whittingham is confident the transition will be smooth.

“Morgan Scalley is a Utah guy through and through,” Whittingham said. “He’s been in the program almost as long as I have. He’s done a great job as an assistant coach and as a coordinator, and for me, the transition will be smooth. We’ve had a lot of great coaches on our staff who will eventually become head coaches, but for now, when that transition happens, Morgan is the choice.”

Regardless of who is the head coach for Utah football this season, there is a lot of potential for this team. The Utes have a lot of talent returning to the team, including quarterback Cam Rising who was injured last year, and they are the favorite to win the Big 12. With the expanded College Football Playoff, a conference championship would clinch Utah.

“The state of our program, we’re playing for championships,” Whittingham said. “That’s our goal every year and as long as I’m here, that’s not going to change. And the beauty of it now is, if you win your conference championship, you’re in the playoffs, you don’t have to be picked by a committee. You’re in.”

This is going to be an interesting year for Utah. They could be in for a coaching change soon, but they should be able to have a good year regardless. The expectation for this team is to win the Big 12 and make the College Football Playoff.