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Football preview: As special teams dominate, Williamson continues to tune out critics

Almost across the board, Stanford’s special teams became a force to be reckoned with in 2013, compiling some of the best stats in the country and a slew of highlight-reel plays. But even though Cardinal fans have become accustomed to suffocating kick coverage and electric Ty Montgomery returns, there’s one vital cog on special teams whose contributions have been acknowledged much less frequently.

Football preview: Highlights abound for speedy tailbacks, but pass blocking still a focus

Senior Kelsey Young and junior Barry J. Sanders are competing to lead a running back by committee that — at least at the top of the depth chart — is likely to be one of the most explosive on the Farm in recent memory. But with the departure of bruising, 226-pound back Tyler Gaffney, the position group also loses something it’s valued for so long: size.