Stanford football (4-2, 2-1 Pac-12) enters this Thursday’s matchup with Arizona State (3-3, 1-2) unranked for the first time this year thanks to two straight losses. The season has taken a sharp turn after such a promising 4-0 start that raised expectations to Andrew Luck era levels. The exhilarating comeback victory over Oregon and Top 10 ranking feels like a different season at this point, and yet the Cardinal still control their own destiny in the Pac-12 North. With a Pac-12 Championship and Rose Bowl appearance still on the table, Stanford can turn 2018 into a success. The sky is not falling. But it might be if the Cardinal lose to Arizona State Thursday night.
The No. 7 Stanford Cardinal (4-1, 2-0 Pac-12) came into South Bend with a perfect record and College Football Playoff hopes. They left with an ugly 38-17 loss to No. 8 Notre Dame (5-0) and a lot of questions after allowing 550 yards of offense through the entire game and mustering a pitiful 30 yards themselves in the second half.
No. 7 ranked Stanford (4-0) and No. 8 ranked Notre Dame (4-0) first played each other in the 1925 Rose Bowl . Since that first meeting (where Knute Rockne’s Fighting Irish took down Pop Warner’s Cardinal), the teams have met 31 times. Thirty-two matchups. Almost a century of history in the rivalry. But for the first time this Saturday, the programs will meet while both ranked in the top-10.
Stanford football is currently ranked seventh in the country coming off of an unbelievable comeback victory in Eugene, Oregon. The Cardinal now face the tall task of heading to South Bend, Indiana to face off against the undefeated, eighth ranked Notre Dame, in what could be the team’s most important game in the last decade. The Daily’s Bobby Pragada, King Jemison, and Gregory Block discuss dealing with the Fighting Irish’s new quarterback, the future direction of the Stanford offense, and the sleeper student to break out in this game.