Utah football has one final opportunity to earn national respect vs. Texas

Utah football is set to take on the Longhorns on New Year’s Eve in the Alamo Bowl. What do you need to know about this matchup?

The Longhorns sit at 7-5, looking to avoid a loss in the Alamo Bowl to put the cap on a disappointing season after putting together such a strong 2018.

On the other side, Utah sits at 11-2 after a loss to Oregon in the Pac-12 Championship. Overall, the Utes have put together a pretty solid season and an Alamo Bowl win would put the cap on a successful year.

Here is how you can catch the matchup:

Date: Tuesday, Dec. 31
Time: 7:30 p.m. ET
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Venue: Alamodome
TV: ESPN
Stream: WatchESPN

Betting Odds

Courtesy of The Action Network

Line: Utah -7
Over/Under: 55

Keys to Victory

For Utah, it is just about playing the game that you have played all season long. You don’t get to 11 wins by accident. This is a good team that was in the Playoff conversation for quite a while. Utah has to play strong defense, something that they have done all season long. Yes, Oregon ran them over, but they were the only team to do so. Besides Arizona State, who rushed for 111, the Utes didn’t allow a 100-yard rusher. Did they play the strongest schedule? No, but other than two strong games, neither did the Longhorns.

Yes, Texas played LSU and Oklahoma- both of which were in the Playoff and one of which is playing for a National Championship in a few weeks. Other than that, they played a normal Big 12 schedule and that conference handed them three losses outside of those two high profile ones.

While they hung around with both, it will take a strong defensive performance as well as a big performance by Ehlinger against a Ute defense that is looking to make yet another statement on the year to win this one and I am not sure they have what it takes.

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Prediction

This is truly Utah’s game to lose and nothing will convince me otherwise. This is a game that will come down to who can shut down the other team and Utah has a defense that could easily be the best in the nation.

Final Score: Utah 35, Texas 20