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House divided by BYU-Utah rivalry

House divided by BYU-Utah rivalry

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Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

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SALT LAKE CITY — The BYU-Utah rivalry can foster tense feelings between even the closest friends. But what if your friend that cheers for "the other team" happens to be your spouse?

BYU graduate Alicia Buchanan had in mind the ideal husband.

"I was definitely not going to marry a Utah fan," she said.

Then she met her future husband, Scott Buchanan, in Boston. But there was that one little issue.

"My father was a professor at the University of Utah for 25 years," Scott said. "So I grew up on campus."

Alicia said, "I woke up every Saturday morning to my dad singing the BYU fight song."

But since Scott and Alicia were more than 2,000 miles away from Utah, love found a way. They moved back to Utah and the rivalry was pushed aside, right? Wrong.

When their first child was born, Scott "put on his University of Utah baseball cap so that would be the first thing she saw when she arrived," Alicia said.

And now the kids don't know what to think in this house divided.

"At Costco earlier in the week I saw cheerleading outfits for BYU and Utah and I told them, ‘You guys can choose. They're just nervous to make that choice to take sides,'" Alicia said.

"Our little 3-year-old son fell asleep the other day wearing a complete and full BYU football uniform lying on his Utah Utes Swoop pillow pet. They're completely confused," Scott added.

Whenever BYU plays Utah in football in Salt Lake, Scott's decked out in crimson, Alicia in blue, together at the stadium.

"I always protect her from the beer and hot dogs. I don't let people get in her face," Scott said.

But for the most part they keep the peace at home as long as politics -- and football -- aren't dinner time conversation.

"Alicia did come home one day with a BYU football outfit for Zack and I was upset because it's my only boy," Scott admitted.

But one thing they agree on is they're sad to see the rivalry taking a break in coming years.

"It has taken away from the rivalry, them not being in the same conference. I'm sad to see it stop," Scott said.

But this weekend will be great, at least for one of them.


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Randall Jeppesen


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