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Friday, December 05, 2008

Andersen expects to compete with big boys in WAC

A couple notes from the hiring of Utah assistant Gary Andersen as the new head coach of Utah State.

His first priority now is meeting with the players currently in the program before they leave for the Christmas break, Andersen said. Next is recruiting, starting with competing in-state against BYU and Utah.

"We will focus in the state of Utah, number one. That's not lip-service, that's a promise," Andersen said. "We will go against whoever we've got to go against -- whether they're the other blue team, the other red team, I don't care. We're going to go head to head with them."

Andersen, named's No. 1 non-BCS recruiter in the country in 2005, vowed to work returned LDS missionaries into his system and bring Polynesian players to USU.

Andersen will meet with Utah coach Kyle Whittingham on Friday to discuss whether or not he will be the Utes' defensive coordinator in the BCS bowl game.

They will also likely discuss which current Utah assistants may come with Andersen. Receivers coach Aaron Roderick and inside linebackers coach Kalani Sitake are at the center of speculation. They could become Andersen's offensive and defensive coordinator.

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