In Saturday morning’s defensive press conference, defensive coordinator Derek Mason and five of the Cardinal’s senior leaders sat down with the media and discussed its Rose Bowl matchup with the Spartan offense as well as some of the behind-the-scenes dynamics that have helped Stanford’s defense continue to assert itself as one of the nation’s best units.
Tomorrow, No. 5 Stanford (3-0, 1-0 Pac-12) hopes to avoid a similar letdown when it takes on Washington State (3-1, 1-0) in Seattle. Despite a shaky fourth quarter against Arizona State last weekend, the Cardinal is coming off a statement win and looks to keep its momentum heading into the middle segment of the season — a task that it failed to accomplish last year. And once again, the test will come within the hostile confines of CenturyLink Field.
The Daily’s football writers make their predictions for the outcome of Saturday’s matchup between the Cardinal and Cougars at CenturyLink field.
The parallels are everywhere: A 3-0 Stanford team heads to CenturyLink Field to take on an unranked but upstart school from the state of Washington for a prime-time matchup on ESPN.
During training camp, Stanford football head coach David Shaw repeatedly emphasized how pleased he was with his team’s overall depth. Now, facing a Saturday night showdown at CenturyLink Field against Washington State without heralded seniors Ed Reynolds (suspended for the first half) and David Yankey, the Cardinal will certainly be putting this depth to the test.
A win is a win, but it certainly was not the way head coach David Shaw drew it up. A 24-point favorite going in to the game, Stanford (6-2, 4-1 Pac-12) escaped with an unconvincing 24-17 victory over a scrappy Washington State (2-6, 0-5) team that refused to quit.
No. 17 Stanford took it down to the wire, but stopped Washington State on the goal line on the final drive of the game to keeps its Pac-12 hopes alive with a 24-17 win.