What Kyle Whittingham and Kalani Sitake said about Quin Snyder on Monday

What Kyle Whittingham and Kalani Sitake said about Quin Snyder on Monday

The sudden resignation of eight-year-old Utah Jazz coach Quin Snyder on Sunday afternoon sent shockwaves not just through the NBA, but through the Utah sports community. He was particularly noticed by the state’s other two high-profile head coaches, Utah’s Kyle Whittingham and BYU’s Kalani Sitake.

Both men took time out to golf at the annual Coaches Legacy Invitational — formerly known as Rivalry for Charity — at Hidden Valley Country Club to talk about Snyder’s decision and address their own situations. The event raised $60,000 for the National Kidney Foundation of Utah and Idaho, according to CEO Deen Vetterli.

“There comes a time when you need a new voice and a new leader, and obviously (Snyder) felt the time was right for him right now, and I’m kinda close to that in my career. “said Whittingham, 62, who has been Utah’s head coach since 2004.

“There comes a time when you need a new voice and a new leader, and obviously (Quin Snyder) felt the time was right for him right now, and I’m kinda close to that in my career.” — Kyle Whittingham, Utah football coach

And that wasn’t the only hint Whittingham gave Monday that his days on the Hill might be coming to an end. Before appearing in front of print reporters and television cameras, he suggested that Utah defensive coordinator Morgan Scalley – who played in the Whittingham quartet – should do the interview because he could soon to be in this position.

It was said a little casually, so take it as you will.

Sitake, 46, on the other hand, said he didn’t even think about quitting, when asked about the dangers of burnout and the toll it has on a coach’s mental health. .

“I know for myself that I’m having so much fun. There may be a time when I have to take a step back,” he said. “But until then, I’m going to keep playing golf and m having as much fun as possible with the young men I coach and interacting with the fans and the media, I’m having too much fun right now to even think about it.

When asked if last year’s 26-17 loss to BYU in Provo might have been his last game against the Cougars, as the teams aren’t expected to see each other again until 2024, Whittingham didn’t show any sympathy. ‘commitment.

“You never know,” he said. “I can tell you right now that I’m excited about this year’s team and what we have in the fall. I have as much energy as I have ever had. But again, I hope and expect to know and understand when the time is right.

For the record, Whittingham’s team shot an 18-under 54 in the four-man scramble format to defeat Sitake’s team, who shot a 64. Whittingham stacks his team with ringers every year, while Sitake takes a more laid-back approach and brings in boosters, friends and staff, so the outcome was never really in doubt.

Plus, Sitake readily admits, Whittingham is a much better golfer.

“I don’t think BYU fans want to see my golf game improve anytime soon,” Sitake said.

They also don’t want to see the popular coach walk away, like Snyder did after eight seasons at the helm of the Utah Jazz.

Whittigham called Snyder’s departure “sad” but also a happy time if that’s what the former Duke star really wanted.

“I don’t know him very well. I had the chance to interact with him a bit,” Whittingham said. “But what the hell coach. I respect everything he has done here. We will miss him. He’s definitely going to have a lot of opportunities and people who are after him, but sad to see him go.

Sitake, who is a huge NBA and Utah Jazz fan and loves chatting about the sport with reporters during downtime between official interviews, said Snyder’s departure took him completely by surprise.

“I love the Jazz and believe in their leadership, (owner) Ryan Smith and those guys,” Sitake said. “We’ll see what happens. I don’t know all the details behind it, except that we need a new coach.

“I’m really grateful for what Quin has done for the franchise,” he continued. “It’s been great fun watching them play. Looking forward to the future, too. …but as a jazz fan, I hope he knows we all appreciate him.

The first Monday in June is a busy day for Sitake and Whittingham, as summer football camps for high school students, and especially rookies, begin on their respective campuses. Vetterli said it was “incredible” and “phenomenal” that coaches continue to support the event, which is the envy of the approximately 50 other NKF franchises across the country.

“It’s always good to participate in this event. It’s for a great cause, of course. And our team played well. So it’s all good,” Whittingham said.


BYU head football coach Kalani Sitake listens to a question during a ceremony for the Coaches Legacy Golf Invitational at Hidden Valley Country Club in Sandy on Monday, June 6, 2022.

Mengshin Lin, Deseret News

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