Although many college football programs have recently incurred heavy financial losses due to bowl game participation, the Stanford athletics department has seen both an increase in season-ticket renewals and national profile in the aftermath of the 2013 Rose Bowl.
Pasadena, Calif– While Stanford’s 20-14 win over Wisconsin last night means the Rose Bowl trophy is making its way to back to the Farm at this very moment, the No. 6 Cardinal also carries with it something much less tangible but perhaps more important: national credibility. Playing in three consecutive BCS games and losing just five times in three years will do that for a program. So will having guys by the name of Toby Gerhart and Andrew Luck and 11 total players in the last three NFL Drafts.
On the eve of Stanford’s first Rose Bowl appearance in 12 seasons, second-year head coach David Shaw has signed a long-term extension to remain on the Farm, Stanford president John Hennessy and athletic director Bernard Muir announced Wednesday.
I’m not going to pretend I’m happy that Stanford couldn’t even sell out its 50,000-seater stadium for the Pac-12 Championship Game on Friday, but there is something deliciously anti-establishment in the fact that, on merit alone, a school that wouldn’t normally get picked for even one BCS bowl is going to be heading to its third in three years.
With the news of Wisconsin Head Coach Brett Bielema’s departure for Arkansas coming four weeks before Stanford and Wisconsin meet in the Rose Bowl, here’s a look at how teams in Wisconsin’s situation have done historically.
On a wet night at Stanford Stadium, Stanford quarterback Hogan did just enough on offense and Shaw put his faith in Jordan Williamson, who delivered a game-winning 36-yard field goal with five minutes left in the fourth quarter to break a 24-24 tie with UCLA and send Stanford to the Rose Bowl as Pac-12 champions, something Harbaugh or Luck couldn’t do.
Here’s a little recipe for success for future Stanford coaches: If you want to make it to the Rose Bowl, throw conventional wisdom out the window.
Stanford can’t focus on postseason awards just yet with No. 17 UCLA and a potential Rose Bowl berth looming at Friday’s Pac-12 Championship game, but the No. 8 Cardinal received some more national recognition on Wednesday when senior tight end Zach Ertz and junior offensive tackle David Yankey were both named to the American Football Coaches Association All-American Team.