Saturday night, Stanford provided as much entertainment as the rabbit that broke loose on the field midway through the first quarter (Cue the Bryce Love to rabbit comparisons). To date, the rampant rabbit video has racked up tens of thousands of views on social media, while Love is finally favored to win the Heisman by Las Vegas oddsmakers.
Oct. 11, 2014: The first widespread use of #Pac12AfterDark occurs on Twitter in reference to USC’s upset of then-No. 10 Arizona, in a game that kicked off at 7:30 p.m. From that day forward, the hashtag has been used hundreds of thousands of times across Twitter. And like the term’s use in 140 character messages, it has also come to symbolize the conference’s push for later and later starting games. Thus far this season, six of seven of Stanford’s games are scheduled to start at 6 p.m. or later, like the Cardinal’s post-7 p.m. start at Utah this past weekend.
It was sometime late Saturday afternoon, well after Stanford had solidified its 34-24 victory over Arizona State, that the mundanity of the game truly set in. The Cardinal, at times, had excited and dazzled its spectators in quick bursts of action, but the warm, sun-filled September day was reminiscent of many past Cardinal performances. Adequate…
Darkness. With 3:58 remaining in the most pivotal moments of the game, darkness. Stanford’s collapse last week against San Diego State, not much unlike the failure of the stadium’s light and electric system was due to human error. Error in play call, error in execution, and a bit of bad luck. But through last week’s loss, and very clearly juxtaposed against this week’s win, a key differentiator stood out from the rest. That is the man in the Quarterback position.
Remembering that Stanford had defeated USC in three consecutive matchups, and that night two Decembers ago where Christian McCaffrey ran rampant through the SC secondary, almost made me forget that this Cardinal team was part of a different reality. Yet reality crept back quickly in the 2nd half of Saturday’s game, resulting in a 42-24 drubbing at the hands of our Southern California rivals.
In enemy territory, No. 20 Stanford Baseball (17-10, 4-5 Pac-12) took two of three games this past weekend at USC (16-14, 5-7 Pac-12). After losing the opening game of the series 5-7, the Cardinal rebounded to win the next two games 8-3 and 6-3 respectively.
Stanford softball (7-3) brings a two-game winning streak into the Mary Nutter Classic today in Cathedral City California. The competition, which brings top softball programs from around the country together, will be played out in quick succession, with Stanford playing five games in just three days.
Stanford men’s basketball (11-8, 3-4 Pac-12) shrugged off a slow start in Corvallis Thursday night to defeat the Oregon State Beavers (4-15, 0-6) 62-46. Despite holding just a two-point lead at halftime, the Cardinal commanded the second half, outscoring their opponent 35 to 21. Junior forward Mike Humphrey scored 21 points to continue his solid Pac-12 play.