Utah was without two of its biggest names for the 22 Forever Game Saturday afternoon, but the Pac-12 Network crew managed to still find them on the sideline to get some questions off.

Quarterback Cameron Rising and tight end Brant Kuithe are both recovering from injuries suffered during the 2022 campaign. Neither was full-go in spring ball. Utah is hopeful to have them back for the start of another title run in 2023. Kuithe was asked during Saturday’s scrimmage what fans can look forward to next season, and his excitement was pretty evident.

“Just that exciting, thrilling offense,” Kuithe said. “I’m sure we’re going to have to get a couple guys in the portal. But, no matter what happens, a lot of guys have been stepping up this spring. Noah Bennee in the tight end room, a lot of receivers stepping up, o-line. You name it, they’ve been stepping up. It’s gonna be a great year this year. Can’t wait. Let’s go get another Pac-12 championship.”

The mention of the portal goes hand-in-hand with what Utah coaches said throughout the last few practices of the spring. Both coach Kyle Whittingham and offensive coordinator Andy Ludwig told reporters they’d look to the portal for help at wide receiver.

Kuithe spent last spring working out wide, but he was lost early in the year and Utah had to lean on Dalton Kincaid at tight end. With Kincaid leaving for the NFL, Utah is in search of playmakers.

Bennee (name-dropped by Kuithe) is a 6-foot-4 redshirt sophomore tight end. He has yet to appear in a game for the Utes, but getting a shoutout from the top guy in the tight end room seems like a solid indicator that might change in 2023.

But even though Utah is in search of a few more playmakers for the new year, Rising said they don’t need to change what they’re doing to contend for a third consecutive Pac-12 title.

“We don’t have to do anything different,” Rising said. “I think we have to do what we do better and it’s just gonna have to raise the level of our play.”

Of course, the health of the two will go a long way in determining just how likely a three-peat is.

“I’m great so far. Can’t complain,” Kuithe said. “Rehab’s going well and we’re on track.”

Added Rising: “Same thing over here. Just feeling good. Excited to get back in a few months here.”

Now the countdown to Aug. 31 begins.