Utah Understands Underdog Status

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Utah quarterback Brian Johnson tuned into the
Sugar Bowl last year. He didn't watch it very long.

There were better things on TV than the 41-10 trouncing that BCS busters Hawaii endured at the hands of a Georgia team that was among the best in the Southeastern Conference last season.

As fate would have it, Johnson's Utes are preparing to play in the Louisiana Superdome one year later, testing their 12-0 record against one of this season's SEC powerhouses.

Johnson says it would be huge for Utah to beat a team as well known as Alabama.

This Friday, Johnson must deal with an opponent coached by a renowned defensive strategist in Nick Saban.

Yet Utah's senior quarterback simply cannot envision the Utes getting rolled by the Crimson Tide like Hawaii was a year ago by Georgia.

He says the only comparison is that neither is a BCS team. Johnson says Utah had a much stronger schedule, and deserves to be in the game.