Late field goal helps Trojans stun No. 5 Stanford

By Daniel Dullum

Andre Heidari’s 47-yard field goal with 19 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter vaulted Southern California past Stanford 20-17 Saturday night in a Pac-12 football thriller at the L.A. Coliseum.

The upset defeat, Stanford’s second of the season, all but squelched the No. 5-ranked Cardinal’s shot at a national championship and put their possible berth for the Pac-12 championship game at risk as well.

It was the fifth win in six games for USC under Coach Ed Orgeron, who replaced the fired Lane Kiffin in late September after a 3-2 start. Trojans quarterback Cody Kessler passed for 288 yards, completing 25 of 37 passes for one TD and no picks. Nelson Agholor, Kessler’s primary target, snared eight passes for 104 yards.

Stanford (8-2 overall, 6-2 Pac-12) tied the game with 9:03 left in the third quarter on an 18-yard touchdown run by Tyler Gaffney. That completed the scoring until Heidari – who missed an extra point kick on the Trojans’ first touchdown – booted his dramatic game-winning field goal.

Gaffney scored both Cardinal touchdowns while gaining 154 yards on 24 attempts. Cardinal quarterback Kevin Hogan completed 14 of 25 passes for 127 yards, but was also picked off twice as Stanford’s offense stalled in key situations most of the night.

USC (8-3 overall, 5-2 Pac-12) took a 14-7 first quarter lead, scoring first on a 1-yard TD pass from Cody Kessler to Soma Vainuku, and a 1-yard run by Javorius Allen. In between, a 35-yard touchdown run by Gaffney put Stanford on the board.

The two teams swapped field goals in the second qauarter. Heidari hit one from 23 yards out, and Stanford’s Conrad Ukropina kicked a 26-yarder 25 seconds before halftime.

Next Saturday, Stanford faces a must-win situation in The Big Game, when the Cardinal host California. Game time is yet to be determined, pending the wants of the television networks.

 

No. 8-ranked Cardinal hold off Oregon State

By Daniel Dullum

No. 8-ranked Stanford traveled to Corvallis, Ore., to face Oregon State, holding off a late Beavers scare to emerge with a 20-12 Pac-12 football victory.

Tyler Gaffney carried the ball 22 times for 145 yards and all three Cardinal touchdowns on runs of 4, 9 and 32 yards. Stanford improved to 7-1 overall, 5-1 in the conference, while OSU slipped to 6-2 overall, 4-1 Pac-12.

Cardinal quarterback Kevin Hogan completed 8 of 18 passes for 88 yards, as Stanford totaled just 276 yards on offense. At the same time, the Cardinal defense held the Beavers to 288 total yards, well below the OSU season average of 515 yards per game.

Beavers quarterback Sean Mannion, who leads the nation in passing yards and touchdown passes, completed 41 of 57 for 271 yards and one TD.

Stanford held a 20-9 lead with less than four minutes left in the fourth quarter. After Trevor Romaine booted a 39-yard field goal with 3:57 to pull the Beavers to within 20-12, OSU drove to the Cardinal 7 with 30 seconds remaining. Four straight incompletions ended the drive, and the Beavers’ six-game winning streak.

The Cardinal defense stopped the Beavers on downs four times inside the Stanford 35 yard line, and sacked Mannion eight times.

Earlier, Romaine gave OSU a 3-0 lead in the second quarter with a career-long 50-yard field goal.

Next week, the Cardinal return home to host No. 2 Oregon.

Michelle Richardson on the NCAA

by Michelle Richardson

Texas 36 Oklahoma 20: These kids from Texas are literally playing for Texas head coach Mack Brown’s job and I still don’t see him being there after this year but right now that’s what their playing for, these kids are playing for Brown. There’s grumblings within the university of Longhorn nation that he is overstaying his welcome and he’s one among the senior college coaches in the nation.

He’s been with U.T. about 16 years so there’s rumblings within from alumni like Earl Campbell that maybe it’s time to have a new leader at the helm. The Red River rivalry is alive and well and the University of Texas took on the Gold Hat. They proved to be the better team Saturday and both teams had interceptions Oklahoma had two interceptions.

In those total yards the efficiency that Texas was just way more efficient with first and third downs the Longhorns converted 13-23 downs when Oklahoma converted only two of 13. You got to convert third downs into first downs. It’s kind of important to keep the ball a little bit. On passing yards there were 109 yards for Texas, rushing yards 255 yards, so Texas was doing it on the ground and in the air.

Missouri 41 Georgia 26: Missouri played like a team possessed and they really didn’t believe the hype from U.G. and they were not thrown by playing them and they were not intimidated and they went in there and they smacked Georgia around. They just smacked those guys around for Georgia they had two fumbles, two interceptions.

That is so unlike Georgia and you have the Georgia quarterback and he’s playing without a lot of weapons and half of his players are injured, running back Todd Gurley is injured and head coach Mark Richt is playing with a lack of weapons. When you start losing key players in your offense it does take control and on Saturday it showed.

It’s not because of all these Georgia players injured is the reason why Missouri won, Missouri went in there and played, Missouri went in there and just controlled that game from the Bulldogs. Missouri played really well on both sides of the ball. Total first downs yards went to Missouri quarterback James Franklin for passing yards at 170 yards and had 12 rushing yards and for Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray he threw for 25-45 for 290 yards, and three touchdowns but lost the game.

Utah 27 Stanford 21: People think just because Utah came out from the Mountain West conference they were a less team. Utah has been showing people that Utah is for real and Utah has had a lot of players who chose not to play in the Pac 12 conference that were recruited by a Pac 12 team. You have a lot of players who played with or on the side a lot of the talent that’s in the Pac 12.

Utah is in it to win it, and as far as expansion it happened to the two teams that were absorbed into the Pac 12 Colorado and Utah. Utah was definitely in the top ten and that’s what they really wanted. The Utes went in there and they were at home and they beat a undefeated Cardinal team. The Utes had 21 first downs in the game, they converted third downs, although they had only one interception Stanford had two but it was a pretty even game.

It was a game of who wanted it more and the Utes wanted it more and the good thing it wasn’t a blow out that’s the thing I love about this game that it wasn’t a blow out it was a hard fought game with Utah quarterback Travis Wilson going 23-24 for 234 yards, and two touchdowns and for Stanford quarterback Kevin Hogan 15-27 for 246 yards and one touchdown.

Michelle Richardson does commentary on the NCAA each week for Sportstalk Radio

Stanford vs. Utah Preview

by Jerry Feitelberg

The Stanford Cardinal (5-0, 3-0 Pac-12) meets the University of Utah Utes (3-2, 0-2 Pac-12)

on Saturday October 12th at 3pm PT at Rice-Eccles Stadium. Saturday’s game marks the first time that Stanford will play Utah as a Pac-12 opponent. This will be the sixth meeting of the teams in a series that dates back to 1902. Stanford leads 3-2 so far. The last meeting was in 1996 and Stanford came up on the short end of the score losing 17-10.

The Cardinal is still ranked #5 nationally and has the second best winning streak (13 games) behind Ohio State’s 18 consecutive wins with schools in the FBS program.

Stanford narrowly edged Washington last week while Utah lost to #11 ranked UCLA. UCLA and

Stanford meet next week at Stanford. The Utes are coached by Kyle Whittingham and is in his ninth season as head coach and has a record of 74-43. The Utes offense is led by quarterback Travis Wilson.

Wilson was 22-44 for 228 yards against the Bruins but he was intercepted six times. His main targets are receivers Sean Fitzgerald and Dres Anderson. The running game features Kelvin York, Bubba Pool and Lucky Radley.

The Cardinal will again be led by Kevin Hogan, who is undefeated since taking over as quarterback last

year. Ty Gaffney is the Cardinal’s leading rusher. Wide Receiver, Ty Montgomery, who leads the Cardinal with 23 receptions and five touchdowns has been added to the Maxwell Award Watch list.

Last week Montgomery returned a kick-off for 99 yards. He also had a touchdown and a 68-yard kickoff return in the third period. He amassed 290 all-purpose yards and set a school record with 204 kickoff return yards.

The defense has been strong all year. The linebackers have been led bu Shayne Skov and A.J.Tarpley. Stanford defensive end Josh Mauro has been added to the Chuck Bednarik Award List. The Award

is given by the Maxwell Club on December 12th. Mauro had seven tackles in then Army game. Six of them were solo tackles. Mauro had a sack and an interception against Arizona State. So far this season he has 17 tackles with four for a loss of 29 yards including three sacks.

Utah Leads the Pac-12 in fewest fumbles lost(1) and is tied for the Pac-12 lead with Stanford in red zone offense(.944) and ranks first in the Pac-12 and third in the nation with sacks per game(3.6).

The Utah kicking game is outstanding. Placekicker Andy Phillips is perfect through five game making all nine of his attempts and has not missed an extra point. Punter Tom Hackett is tied for the Pac-12

lead in punt return average(44.0), punts inside the 20(11) and punts of 50+ yards(7).

The Cardinal is favored to win but playing on the road in a new venue is never easy. The Utes

appear able to score once the get into the red zone and Stanford’s defense will be tested.

Hogan and company are battle tested and should be able to break down Utah”s defense.

The Cardinal cannot look ahead to the showdown with UCLA. Stanford coach David Shaw will see to it that his team will be ready.

Stanford outlasts Huskies to go 5-0

By Jeremy Harness

STANFORD – Head coach David Shaw said that what he likes most about his team is the mental toughness that it has, that “of all the things you can ask for as a coach, that’s what you want.”

That’s what got Stanford through in the fourth quarter, as No. 15 Washington put the pressure on time and again in the fourth quarter while it gripped tightly to a three-point lead.

Although Stanford never trailed in the game, it wasn’t really over until the Keith Price’s would-be first-down pass to Kevin Smith on fourth down was ruled incomplete with 1:15 remaining, allowing the Cardinal to run out the clock and avenge their only loss last year in Pac-12 play, coming away with a 31-28 win Saturday night at Stanford Stadium, marking the third time since World War II that Stanford has started the season with a 5-0 record.

Getting stops against Price was by no means easy, especially Saturday night. The dual-threat quarterback torched Stanford for 350 yards by completing 33 of his 48 throws, and even though the Cardinal sacked him five times, there were plenty other opportunities.

“We were trying to keep him in the pocket, but he kept high-stepping (out of trouble),” Trent Murphy said. “But we just couldn’t put him down.”

If anyone had a turnaround game from last year’s humbling loss to the Huskies, it was Ty Montgomery, who had a less-than-glorious performance in Seattle. This time around, he sliced the Huskies up for 290 all-purpose yards, including taking the opening kickoff 99 yards to give Stanford a lightning-quick 7-0 lead as well as a touchdown catch with 10 seconds left in the first half.

“(Also,) when he wasn’t carrying the ball, he was blocking his tail off,” Shaw said. “I would say that Ty was the difference in the ballgame. He’s a special player that we think his future is extremely bright, and he’s only going to get better.”

After that opening kickoff, the rest of the first quarter was a real struggle between two of the top defenses in the nation. The Huskies got as far as the Stanford 44 before they were forced to punt the ball away and were not able to get into any sort of rhythm on offense, a far cry from what they’ve been accustomed to this year.

Stanford’s offense, on the other hand, fared a tad better than Washington’s but ultimately came away with only three more points. The Cardinal advanced into Husky territory three times in the quarter but turned the ball over twice, once on an interception and the other on downs, as a fourth-and-four pass at the Washington 30 fell incomplete.

The Cardinal got to Washington’s 35 late in the second quarter, but rather than try a long field goal that would have been around 50 yards, they elected to punt it away and put the rest of the half in the hands of the defense.

That move backfired, though. Washington suddenly found its offensive groove and drove 88 yards down the field and capped things off with a 7-yard touchdown run by Bishop Sankey to cut Stanford’s lead to three.

Stanford countered beautifully to bring that lead back up. To close out the first half, Kevin Hogan saw Montgomery single-covered on the right side and dropped in deep ball on Montgomery’s outside shoulder for a 38-yard touchdown that cornerback Marcus Peters, who had intercepted Hogan earlier in the half, had no chance of defending.

While the first quarter was a struggle on offense for both teams, the third quarter was anything but. Washington took the ball to start the quarter and again ripped the Stanford defense, this time for 75 yards on only four plays and capping it off by getting into the end zone. Keith Price, using his legs to maneuver out of trouble, found an open Kevin Smith for a 29-yard touchdown to again cut the Stanford lead to a trio.

The Cardinal’s ensuing drive was a bit more time-consuming and methodical, but it ended up netting the same result. They ran the ball seven times on that drive, simply moving the chains until they got into position to strike. Hogan’s 4-yard touchdown did just that.

Washington answered with a touchdown of their later in the quarter and was again within striking distance late in the fourth, riding the legs of Sankey and the dual skills of Price to pierce their way inside the Stanford 10. At that point, Stanford’s came up with the big play that it needed. Linebacker Trent Murphy got his hand on a Price pass and knocked it straight into the air, and A.J Tarpley came down with it to thwart the rally.

But that didn’t stop the Huskies. They got a big stop of their own and forced a three-and-out on the ensuing possession, getting the ball back with plenty of time left in the game. They once again got deep into Cardinal territory, but this time, they were able to punch it in to cut the lead to three.

Stanford, however, could not put them away, as the Huskies drove just past midfield with a chance to tie or even win the game until the fourth-down pass fell through Smith’s hands.

“It’s not a beauty contest; it’s a football game,” Shaw said. “No matter how imperfect the whole game is, (when) we get to the fourth quarter, we’ve got to finish.

“Our guys finished well.”

Stanford vs Washington State preview

football_rev_enginesby Jerry Feitelberg

Stanford- Washington State Preview

The Stanford Cardinal will meet the Washington State Cougars this Saturday at CenturyLink Stadium in Seattle. Seattle will be a home game for the Cougars who normally play in Pullman.

The Cardinal enters the game with a record of 3-0 having defeated Arizona State last week at Stanford.

The Cardinal offense is led by quarterback Kevin Hogan who is 8-0 as a starter for the Cardinal. Hogan has thrown 62 times for 546 yards so far this season. Running back Tyler Gaffney has rushed for 331

yards and five touchdowns. Stanford has started out 3-0 for four consecutive season for the first time since 1908-1911. The Cardinal has to be wary of the Cougars. Last year the Cougars lost to Stanford 24-17. The Cardinal defense sacked the Cougar quarterback ten times last year.

The Cougars, under coach Mike Leach, are 3-1 so far this year and have matched last year’s win total.

Cougar quarterback, Connor Halliday leads a pass happy attack. Halliday has thrown for nine touchdowns but has been intercepted eight times. Cougars wide receiver Gabe Marks is second in the Pac-12 with 31 catches and fourth with 348 yards. The Cougar defense has limited opponents to 17 points in winning three straight for the first time since 2006. The Cougars upset the USC Trojans 10-7 in Los Angeles on September 7th.

Stanford has won eleven games in a row second only to Ohio State(16 ) and the Cardinal defense has a takeaway in 27 straight games. The Cardinal won the last five meetings with the Cougars.

Stanford senior safety Ed reynolds will sit out the first half of the game. Reynolds was ejected from

the game with Arizona State after he hit Sun Devils QB Taylor Kelly in the helmet.

Star offensive lineman David Yankey is not available due to a “family situation.”

Stanford vs Arizona State Preview

Stanford vs Arizona State Preview

by Jerry Feitelberg

The Stanford Cardinal hosts the Arizona State Sun Devils Saturday September 21st at Stanford Stadium at 4pm.

The game should be a barnburner and Stanford will have its hands full with the dynamic ASU offense.

The Sun Devils are coached by Todd Graham. Graham is in his second year as head coach and had a winning season last as the Sun Devils went 8-5.

The Sun Devil offense is led by quarterback Taylor Kelly. Kelly has thrown for 13 touchdowns and has completed 105-of- 153 passes in his last five games going back to last season and has a quarterback rating of 169.86 during that period. One team will see its winning streak snapped this weekend.

ASU has won its last five and Stanford has a ten game winning streak going back to last year.

Stanford is ranked number 5 nationally while ASU is ranked 23rd. Stanford beat San Jose State and Army to open the season at 2-0 while ASU beat Sacramento State and Wisconsin. Saturday’s game will open the Pac-12 season for both teams.

ASU has a high powered passing game and has averaged 358 yards per game so far this season but they will be going up Stanford’s passing defense which is ranked 7th nationally and has allowed just 132 yards per game in the two games played.

Stanford’s offense ,led by quarterback Kevin Hogan and running back Ty Gaffney , will have to be at the top of their game. The Cardinal defense is hurting. Defensive end Henry Anderson will not be available as well as cornerback Barry Browning and linebacker Blake Martinez.

The pressure will be on Stanford to win. The Cardinal cannot afford to lose if it wants to be a national title contender. A Stanford loss might make the game with Oregon on November 7th a do-or-die situation for the North Division title.

ASU leads the series 16-11. Stanford won the last meeting between the two team in 2010 and the Cardinal has won five of the last six meetings between the two teams at Stanford Stadium dating back to 2000.

Cardinal hold off stubborn Army

By Daniel Dullum

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Army was a 30-point underdog in Saturday’s non-conference football contest against visiting Stanford. The undefeated, No. 5-ranked Cardinal eventually prevailed at West Point, N.Y., after a difficult first half.

After taking a seven-point lead into halftime, Stanford asserted itself in the second half and defeated the Black Knights 34-20. Cardinal quarterback Kevin Hogan threw for three touchdowns and Tyler Gaffney added two touchdowns plus 132 rushing yards.

Army (1-2), decades removed from its day as a college football power, was looking for its first win over a ranked team since defeating Air Force 17-14 on Nov. 4, 1972.

A 23-yard touchdown pass from Hogan to Gaffney extended Stanford’s lead to 27-13 late in the third quarter.

Ty Montgomery caught six passes for 130 yards and a touchdown, while Hogan finished the day 11 of 18 for 188 yards for the Cardinal (2-0).

Army quarterback A.J. Schurr completed four of five passes for 25 yards and one touchdown. Terry Baggett led the Black Knights with 96 rushing yards on nine carries. Raymond Maples and Larry Dixon, two of Army’s top running backs, were injured during the game and played little.

The momentum shifted to Stanford for good in the third quarter. Army, trailing 20-13 and looking to tie the score, lost the ball when quarterback Angel Santiago made a bad third-down handoff after driving into Cardinal territory. James Vaughters recovered the fumble for Stanford, setting up Gaffney’s TD catch.

In the fourth quarter, Army gambled on fourth-and-1, failing to pick up a first down inside its own 30. The Cardinal then put the game away on Gaffney’s 1-yard touichdown run.

Next Saturday, the Cardinal kick off their 2013 Pac-12 season by hosting Arizona State. Kickoff is at 7 p.m. 628x471

Stanford rolls over San Jose State

by Jerry Feitelberg

Here we go- it’s the start of the football season for the fourth ranked Stanford Cardinal. Stanford is coming off a great season in 2012 winning the Pac-12 championship and representing the Pac-12 in the Rose Bowl and, just to refresh your memory, Stanford beat Wisconsin to win the Rose Bowl game for the first time in 40 years. They opened the season Saturday night against the Spartans of San Jose State. Although the Cardinal has had their way with the Spartans the last few years, they cannot take this team lightly. The Spartans nearly upset Stanford last year but this a new year and the Spartans have a solid team with a terrific quarterback, David Fales. Stanford easily beat the Spartans by a final score of 34-13.

The Cardinal got off to a great start. San Jose State got the ball first but could manage just one first down. The Cardinal defense stopped the Spartans and the Cardinal got the ball on their own 33 yard line. Cardinal quarterback Kevin Hogan then took the Cardinal on a 67 yard drive in six plays. The touchdown was a 40 yard strike from Kevin Hogan to Devon Cajuste. It took just 2 minutes and 42 seconds for Stanford to score to take a 7-0 lead. The Spartans came back  after the kickoff and marched 62 yards before the drive stalled and they settled for a 30 yard field goal. Stanford led 7-3 with 3:26 left in the first quarter and that’s the score at the end of the first 15 minutes of play.

The Cardinal scored their second touchdown of the game with 12:33 left to play in the first half. The Cardinal went 75 yards  in 13 plays. The key play was a 16 yard run by Tyler Gaffney for the score.

14-3  in favor of Stanford. The Spartans could do nothing after the kickoff and were forced to punt. The punt was partially blocked and Stanford had great field position. The Cardinal went 19 yards in 4 plays and had to settle for a 40 yard field goal as they now lead 17-3 with 8:54 left in the first half.

The Spartans took the kickoff and marched down the field at will but the Stanford defense rose up and stopped the Spartans at the 5 yard line. The Spartans made the field goal and trail 17-6 with 3:43 left to play. The drive took 5:11 off the clock. Stanford missed a 52 yard field goal attempt at the end of the half . Stanford up by a score of 17-6.

Stanford’s Kevin Hogan was 8 for 15 passing for 94 yard and one touchdown. Tyler Gaffney had 8 carries for 53 yards and a TD. David Fales was 14 for 19 for the Spartans for 92 yards.

The Cardinal got the ball to start the second half and went on an 11 play 44 yard drive but the drive stalled and Jordan Williamson made a 48 yard field goal to put the Cardinal ahead 20-6 with 10:17 left to play in the third period. On the next series, Stanford’s defense forced the Spartans to punt from deep in their territory. The Cardinals got the ball in good field position and they marched 47 yard in 9 plays. The key play was a 17 yard pass from Kevin Hogan to Ty Montgomery for the score. Stanford leads 27-6 with 5:34 to go in the quarter. The Spartans then went on a 9 play 65 yard drive to score. The key play was a 13 yard pass from David Fales to Noel Grigsby for the touchdown. The drive was aided by a defensive holding penalty that kept the drive alive for San Jose State. The Spartans trail 27-13 late in the third period.

Stanford fumbled to start the fourth quarter but the Cardinal got the ball back when the defense put pressure on David Fales and that resulted in Ed Reynolds making an interception. Stanford then went 52 yards in 5 plays. The key plays on the drive was a 42 yard pass from Hogan to Ty Montgomery to put the ball on the six yard line. Tyler Gaffney ran for four to put the ball on the two and then Gaffney bulled his way into the end zone for the score. Second touchdown of the game for Gaffney and Stanford has a commanding 34-13 lead.There was no more scoring and Stanford wins the opener.

Game notes- Kevin Hogan was 17 for 27 for 207 yards and two touchdowns. Tyler Gaffney had 20 rushing attempts for 104 yards and two scores. Overall Stanford had 404 total yard on offense.

The Spartans’ David Fales was 29 for 43 for 216 yards and one TD. Jason Simpson was the Spartans leading rusher gaining 43 yards on 11 attempts. The Spartans had 251 total yards on offense.

Stanford travels back east to West Point to play Army.