Utah has sold out 44 consecutive games in Rice-Eccles stadium, dating back to the 2010 season opener. Of the sellouts, 41 were played before standing-room only crowds, including all six home games in 2016. The Utes set a new single-season attendance record (46,533) in 2015 when they also broke their all-time single-game mark (47,825) against Michigan. Utah recorded its second-highest attendance average (46,506) and two of the top six single-game totals in 2016.
Kyle Whittingham, the 2008 National Coach of the Year, has participated in more Utah victories than any football coach in school history. Utah has won 189 games in Whittingham’s 23 years on the staff, including a 104-50 record in 12 years as the head coach.
Among those head coaching wins is a remarkable 10-1 bowl record. Whittingham owns the best bowl win percentage in NCAA history (91%) and his 10 bowl wins ties him for second among active coaches (one behind Alabama’s Nick Saban). Including ties, he is ranked in the top 10 in all-time bowl victories.
Overall, he has averaged nearly nine wins a season as Utah’s head coach. The Utes have wins over every team in the Pac-12 Conference since joining the league in 2011 and Whittingham’s impressive non-conference resume includes a winning record against current members of the other Power Five conferences: 4-0 vs. the Big Ten, 7-1 against the ACC, 1-0 vs. the SEC and 4-3 over the Big 12.
Whittingham came to Utah in 1994 as the defensive line coach and was promoted to defensive coordinator the following year. On December 8, 2004, he was named the school’s 20th head coach. His first victory came three weeks later when he co-coached (with Urban Meyer) the 2005 Fiesta Bowl win over Pittsburgh. His first regular-season victory was against Arizona in the 2005 season opener.
Whittingham has been a semifinalist for the George Munger Coach of the Year Award for the past three seasons (2014-16). His teams have recorded five AP top-25 finishes while logging 13 wins over ranked teams, including victories over No. 4 Alabama (2009), No. 5 Stanford (2013) and No. 8 UCLA (2014).
Eleven of his players have made major All-America teams in 13 seasons, and he has mentored the Ray Guy Award winner as the nation’s best punter in the last three seasons. Whittingham’s players have won 70 first-team all-conference awards, including 19 in Utah’s first six seasons of Pac-12 play.
Whittingham owns a reputation for developing NFL talent, which was reinforced by a school-record eight NFL draft picks in 2017. As an assistant or head coach, 79 of Whittingham’s players have signed contracts with NFL teams. Among them were 45 draft picks—including 13 first or second-round selections—and 35 undrafted free agents.
Whittingham graduated from BYU in 1984 and added a master’s degree from the school in 1987. Born Nov. 21, 1959, he was raised in Provo, Utah. He is married to the former Jamie Daniels. They have four children: Tyler, Melissa, Alex and Kylie, and one grandchild. Tyler played for the Utes from 2009-11 and Alex is preparing for his senior season at Utah.