Athletes, students and campus police prepare for football’s ‘Holy War’

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

PROVO, Utah – Saturday’s football game between Brigham Young University and the University of Utah is the biggest rivalry in the state, and preparations for the event have already begun.

Anticipation is high at BYU as the so-called "Holy War" approaches, and students like Andrew Crawford are feeling confident in a Cougar victory.

“We practice harder, and we practice really well, and I think our preparation is gonna be better than theirs,” he said.

But as BYU’s football team is preparing, so are members of campus police. Carri Jenkins of BYU public affairs said they have moved to protect signs and statutes on campus.

“It is wrapped and protected in case someone had any ideas of doing damage to the statues,” she said.

Jenkins said in the past they have seen red paint and other problems appear on statues and signs near LaVell Edwards Stadium.

“It can be very damaging and costly,” she said of the vandalism.

Jenkins said the vandalism shouldn’t be pinned on the rival to the north, though.

“Sometimes there has been some damage done to the campus, usually, honestly not by students at the U, but by those who just don't understand what the rivalry really means,” she said. “Usually the vandals are caught. And this is something that anyone who would even let this cross their mind should consider: That this is something that would put them in trouble with the law.”

Whether it’s the possibility of legal action or just because of a little more maturity, Jenkins said things have improved in recent years.

“The vandalism on campus has certainly declined,” Jenkins said.