QB Travis Wilson to start for Utes

After a one-week hiatus, Travis Wilson will be back at starting quarterback as No. 19 Utah hosts No. 20 USC in a critical Pac-12 South showdown Saturday.

Kendal Thompson, a transfer from Oklahoma, replaced Wilson in Utah's win at UCLA on Oct. 4.

During the subsequent bye week, coach Kyle Whittingham opened up the competition and kept his decision quiet before Utah's trip to Oregon State last Thursday. Thompson got the start, but he struggled in the first half and was replaced by Wilson for the second half.

Neither quarterback performed particularly well in the Utes' 29-23 double-overtime win over the Beavers. Thompson was just 4-of-8 for 17 yards and an interception. Wilson was 5-of-10 for 45 yards. Neither quarterback threw a touchdown.

This time around, Whittingham wasn't waiting to name his guy.

"We think Travis' performance is a little bit better so far this season than Kendal overall," Whittingham said. "When you look at the numbers, it's very close. It's no different than when we came out of fall camp, with it being a tight race."

On the season, Wilson is completing 56.8 percent of his passes with seven touchdowns and no interceptions. Thompson is completing 59.6 percent of his throws with two touchdowns and two interceptions. Each has run for one score.

Whittingham didn't rule out the possibility that Thompson could see action against the Trojans.

"We're waiting for some separation to occur," Whittingham said. "Ideally we'd like some separation to occur, and one guy to take charge and settle in and be the guy, but that hasn't happened yet, so they're both going to get opportunities until that does happen."