Stanford Hosts WSU This Saturday
Oct. 22, 2000
THE CARDINAL: Stanford ended its three game losing streak with a 32-30 win over USC last Saturday at Stanford Stadium ... With the win, the Cardinal pulled even in the Pac-10 Conference at 2-2 and is now tied with Arizona State for fifth place ... Stanford will host Washington this Saturday, October 28 at Stanford Stadium with kickoff slated for 2:00 pm ... The game will not be televised live ... The Stanford Athletic Department will be presented with the Sears Directors' Cup on Saturday, marking the sixth straight year that Stanford has won the award that honors the top overall athletic department in the nation.
STANFORD-WASHINGTON SERIES: The Huskies lead the series 36-32-4 and have won 13 of the last 14 and 17 of the last 19 since 1977 ... During this time ('77-'99), Stanford's only two wins over Washington have come at Stanford Stadium over nationally-ranked Husky teams ... In 1982, John Elway led Stanford to a 43-31 win over No. 1 ranked Washington ... In 1994, Stanford beat No. 12 Washington 46-28 ... It was the final win for Bill Walsh as Stanford's head coach... It was also the last time the Cardinal beat the Huskies ... Prior to Washington's dominance since 1977, Stanford had won 10 straight over the Huskies from 1967-76.
CONFERENCE CATALOGUE: Stanford is 11-3 in its last 14 Pacific-10 Conference games ... During this time, the Cardinal is 3-0 vs. Washington State, 2-0 vs. USC and California, 1-0 vs. UCLA and Arizona State, 1-1 vs. Oregon State and Arizona and 0-1 vs. Washington ... Stanford won its final two conference games in '98, went 7-1 in '99 en route to the Pac-10 championship and is 2-2 thus far in '00.
CARDIAC CARDS: For the second time this season, Stanford scored the game-winning touchdown late in the game to pull out a win ... And for the second time this season, QB Chris Lewis came off the bench to throw the game-winning TD pass ... Lewis hooked up with DeRonnie Pitts with 1:12 left in the game on a 15-yard scoring pass for the game-winning TD against Texas on Sept. 16 ... Last Saturday, it was Lewis and Jamien McCullum on a 20-yard TD pass on the game's final play to beat USC ... In fact, three of Stanford's last four wins have come in dramatic fashion ... Along with this year's Texas and USC games, the Cardinal beat Notre Dame 40-37 in the 1999 regular season finale on a 22-yard Mike Biselli field goal on the game's final play.
THE FINAL FOUR: Stanford must win three of its final four games to reach six wins and become bowl eligible ... The road will not be easy for the Cardinal, who must face No. 9 Washington at home, then travel to UCLA before closing out the season at home against Arizona State and in Berkeley against Cal in the 103rd Big Game.
TOUGH OPPONENTS: Stanford's 2000 schedule has been ranked as one of the toughest in all of college football ... Eight of Stanford's 11 opponents have been nationally ranked this season, including five that are ranked in the top-25 this week ... Five of Stanford's seven opponents have been ranked this year (Texas, Arizona, Notre Dame, Oregon State, USC) ... The Cardinal's next three opponents (Washington, UCLA, Arizona State) have a combined record of 16-5 - a winning percentage of .762 ... The Cardinal beat No. 5 ranked Texas 27-24 on September 16, but have lost their last three games to nationally ranked opponents (Arizona, Notre Dame and Oregon State) ... Still ahead is #9 Washington (6-1), at UCLA (4-3), at home vs. Arizona State (5-2) and the Big Game at Cal ... Stanford's 11 opponents this season have a combined record of 49-30 and a winning percentage of .620.
WASHINGTON-STANFORD COACHING TIES: Washington offensive coordinator Keith Gilbertson has ties to three assistant coaches on the Cardinal staff ... Gilbertson and Kent Baer coached together at Utah State from 1977-81 along with Cardinal assistant coach Denny Schuler ... As the head coach at Cal, Gilbertson hired Schuler as his offensive coordinator from 1993-95 ... As the head coach at Idaho from 1986-88, Gilbertson hired Bill Diedrick as his offensive coordinator ... Tom Williams, Washington's OLB coach, played at Stanford from 1989-92 and was a graduate assistant from 1993-95 ...From '89-91, Williams played for head coach Denny Green, Tyrone Willingham was the Cardinal's running backs coach ... Washington's Steve Axman was Stanford's offensive line coach in 1986 ... Diedrick was on the Washington staff from 1994-97 and coached with Randy Hart, the Huskies current defensive line coach.
HEAD COACH TYRONE WILLINGHAM: Now in his sixth season at the helm of the Cardinal football program, Tyrone Willingham has the longest tenure on The Farm since John Ralston's nine-year run from 1963-71 ... Willingham has compiled an overall record of 33-31-1 ... His resume during his first five years at Stanford includes three bowl games, two Pac-10 Coach of the Year honors (1995, '99), a Pac-10 championship and a Rose Bowl appearance ... Willingham previously held assistant coaching positions at Central Michigan (1978-79), Michigan State (1980-82), North Carolina State (1983-85), Rice (1986-88), Stanford (1989-91) and the Minnesota Vikings (1992-94) ... He first came to Stanford as the running backs coach under Dennis Green in 1989, then returned to The Farm as head coach to replace Bill Walsh on Nov. 28, 1994.
REVIEWING USC: Jamien McCullum and QB Chris Lewis hooked up on a 20-yard touchdown pass on the game's final play, giving Stanford a 32-30 win over the Trojans at Stanford Stadium ... Lewis entered the game with less than a minute to play after starting QB Randy Fasani left the game with an injury ... Lewis, who started the previous three games, threw three incomplete passes before connecting with McCullum for the game-winning TD ... Stanford led 14-0 in the second quarter and 20-8 in the third period before the Trojans scored 22 unanswered points to take a 30-20 lead with 8:16 to play ... Stanford drove 78 yards on 11 plays for a touchdown - Kerry Carter's fourth rushing TD of the game - to cut the lead to 30-26 with 5:22 remaining ... The Cardinal's final drive began at midfield with 3:42 on the clock.
MAKING A DIFFERENCE: In the four games in which Randy Fasani has started at quarterback, the Cardinal is not only 3-1, but its offensive production has been significantly better ... Consider the facts: in Fasani's four starts, Stanford is averaging 27.5 points, 431 yards of total offense, 277 yards passing and 154 yards rushing ... In the three games in which Fasani did not play, Stanford averaged 7.6 points, 320 yards of total offense, 201 passing yards and 119 yards rushing.
TURNOVER TALES: Stanford's turnover margin in 2000 has not been as successful as it was a year ago, when the Cardinal ranked second in the conference and tied for sixth in the nation with a +0.91 turnover margin ... For the season, Stanford was +10 in turnovers ... A year ago, Stanford took 30 turnovers and turned them into 87 points ... Through seven games in '00, the Cardinal has scored 10 points off turnovers ... In Stanford's three wins (Washington State, Texas, USC), the Cardinal is +3 in turnovers while in its four losses, Stanford is -9 in turnovers ... In the last 19 games ('99, '00), Stanford is 7-1 when it wins the turnover battle, 2-6 when it loses and 2-1 when the turnovers are even.
YOUTH MOVEMENT: Stanford fields one of its youngest teams in recent years ... Only seven players, including six starters, off the current two-deep chart are in their final season of eligibility ...Of the 44 players listed on the team's regular two-deep chart, 19 players will return in 2001 for their final season of eligibility, 12 players have two years remaining (2001, '02), six have three years remaining after the 2000 season (2001, '02, '03) and seven will not return in 2001 ... Offensively, starting WR DeRonnie Pitts and TE Russell Stewart along with backup FB Emory Brock are the only three players currently in their final year of eligibility ... On the defensive side of the ball, Stanford returns everyone with the exception of DT Willie Howard, DE Sam Benner, OLB Riall Johnson and SS Aaron Focht.
STARTING STREAKS: DT Willie Howard started his 41st consecutive game last Saturday against USC and, barring injury, has a chance to start every game of his college career if he remains in the starting lineup for the rest of the 2000 season ... Howard has started every game since being inserted into the lineup to begin the 1997 season ... Listed below are Stanford's longest current starting streaks:
PENALTY BOX: Stanford once again leads the Pac-10 in fewest penalties ... The Cardinal is tops in the league in fewest penalties (39), penalty yards (284) and penalty yards per game (40.6) ... Stanford has led the Pac-10 in fewest penalties and penalty yards per game in each of the last four seasons ... A year ago, the Cardinal averaged 42.9 penalty yards per game (58 penalties, 472 penalty yards) ... Stanford, which was second in the league in 1995, also led the league in 1996 (59 penalties, 539 yards), '97 (66-596) and '98 (73-544).
NATIONAL ROSTER: Stanford's roster includes players from two countries and 28 states, making the Cardinal perhaps the most diverse team in college football ... Stanford has players from Canada and every region in the U.S. ... The Cardinal roster includes 24 players from California, seven from Pennsylvania, six each from Washington and Texas, four from Florida and Utah, three from Michigan, Ohio and Idaho, two from Mississippi, Nevada, Virginia and Missouri and one each from Arizona, Colorado, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Oregon, Tennessee and Wisconsin.
PITTS LEADS CARDINAL RECEIVING CORPS: Fifth-year senior WR DeRonnie Pitts has had some great games in his collegiate career, but Saturday's performance may have been his best ... Pitts exploded for career-highs of 13 receptions and 176 yards, marking the third time this season and 10th in his career that he has had 100 yards receiving or more in a single game ... The 13 receptions left him just one shy of the Stanford single game record, and was the most receptions ever against USC in a single game (old record 12) ... The 176 yards also tied for the 12th best single game performance in Stanford history ... Pitts has established himself as one of the top receivers in the nation with 51 catches for 629 yards (12.3 ave.) and five touchdowns this season ... The senior, who is among both the Stanford and Pac-10 career leaders in receptions and receiving yards, has also accounted for over 42 percent (51 of 121) of the Cardinal's receptions this season ... Pitts ranks tied for fifth in all of Division I-A football and first in the Pac-10 with 7.29 receptions per game and is 19th in the nation and third in the conference with 89.86 receiving yards per game ... He's also 22nd in the nation and third in the conference in total receiving yards (629) and fifth in the conference in all-purpose yards (108.00) ... In addition to the big game against the Trojans, he has also broken the 100-yard barrier this season against both San Jose State (11-130, 2 TDs) and Notre Dame (8-100, TD) ... And against then-#5 Texas, Pitts had a dramatic, game-winning 15-yard TD reception with just 1:12 remaining in the contest... Pitts had his breakout year in '98 with 74 receptions (tied for the third highest single season total in school history) for 1,012 yards and seven touchdowns ... Pitts' accomplishments have been well noticed, as he is on the 'watch list' for the Biletnikoff Award.
BIG GAME VS. USC MOVES PITTS UP PAC-10 RECEIVING LISTS: Senior WR DeRonnie Pitts moved up five spots on the Pacific-10 Conference's career receiving yardage list and three spots on the conference's career receptions chart with his career-best 13-catch, 176-yard effort against the Trojans ... On the conference reception list, which includes statistics from bowl games, Pitts moved from seventh to fourth place and now stands at 202 ... He also became just the fifth player in Pac-10 history, and the third from Stanford, to record 200 career receptions (Troy Walters 248, Dennis Northcutt 223, Darrin Nelson 223, Johnnie Morton 201) ... On the Stanford career reception list (does not include bowl games), Pitts now has 196 to move past Brad Muster (194, 1984-87) and into third place ... The fifth-year senior jumped all the way from 11th to sixth place on the Pac-10 career receiving yardage list with 2,770 ... He now needs just 26 yards to tie USC's Keyshawn Johnson (2,796) for fifth place.
RIALL JOHNSON LEADS THE PASS RUSH: For the second straight season, fifth-year senior OLB Riall Johnson - a Lynwood, Washington native -has been a big key to the Cardinal's pass rush ... Johnson, who tied for the Pac-10 lead with 13 quarterback sacks a year ago, has eight of Stanford's 16 sacks thus far this season ... The eight sacks (-52 yards) leads the Pac-10, and puts him in position to become the conference's first back-to-back sack leader since the stat began being kept in 1984 ... Johnson also ranks among the conference leaders with 11 tackles-for-loss(-69 yards), and is among the team leaders with 30 tackles (23 unassisted) ... Johnson, who has started 29 of the last 30 games dating back to 1998, has recorded at least one tackle-for-loss in all seven games this season, and a sack in five of the seven games ... Johnson's best game of the 2000 campaign came in the Cardinal's home upset over then-No. 5 Texas, as he recorded three sacks (-19 yards) and four tackles-for-loss (-26 yards) to earn USATODAY.com Pacific-10 Conference Player of the Week honors ... Johnson has recorded two sacks or more in a game seven times in his career ... For his career, Johnson has 29 sacks (-213 yards) and 43 tackles-for-loss (-259 yards) ... Johnson, who moved to outside linebacker from defensive end prior to the 1999 season, also had a banner year in '99 - tying for the Pac-10 lead in sacks with 13 (-108 yards) en route to second team all-conference honors ... The 13 sacks made Johnson just the fourth Cardinal since 1980 to record 10 or more sacks in a season (Kailee Wong 1996-97, Ron George 1990, '92, Rob Hinckley 1988) ... In that '99 campaign, he had the best game of his collegiate career with an amazing five sacks in a home victory over Washington State ... Johnson's younger brother, Teyo, who was one of the nation's prized recruits in both basketball and football, is a true freshman reserve quarterback for the Cardinal.
FASANI RETURNS VS. TROJANS: Senior quarterback Randy Fasani (two years of eligibility remaining) return to action on Saturday after missing three games (vs. Arizona, at Notre Dame, at Oregon State) with a strained ligament and torn cartilage in his left knee that was suffered in game #3 vs. Texas ... Fasani, who ranked among the national leaders in virtually every passing category before the injury, went 18-of-36 for 196 yards in his return to the lineup ... For the season, Fasani is 55-of-107 (51.4 percent) for 860 yards with six touchdowns and three interceptions ... Earlier this season against San Jose State, Fasani threw for 373 yards - the 20th highest single game total in school history - and went 18-of-42 with four touchdowns and one interception ... Prior to this season, Fasani appeared in 13 games off the bench in '98 and '99, and went 9-of-22 for 94 yards with one touchdown and one interception in addition to also seeing time at tight end, on special teams and at linebacker ... He redshirted the '97 campaign, and then appeared in 10 games (mainly in goal line situations) in '98 ... He went 8-of-16 for 81 yards with an interception and a touchdown in those 10 games, and also rushed for three touchdowns to tie for the team lead in that category ... Fasani started the '99 season as the No. 3 quarterback behind Husak and Joe Borchard, but prior to game #7 at USC was switched to inside linebacker in order to get his athleticism on the field ... Prior to moving to linebacker, Fasani appeared in three games at QB in '99 and went 1-for-6 for 13 yards.
LEWIS RALLIES THE TROOPS - AGAIN: Saturday's win against USC marked the second time this season that redshirt freshman QB Chris Lewis has led the Cardinal to victory with a dramatic, last-second touchdown pass ... Against the Trojans, Lewis hooked up with Jamien McCullum on a 20-yard touchdown pass in the right corner of the end zone on the final play of the game ... Lewis entered the game with less than a minute remaining after Randy Fasani left with an injury, and went 3-of-5 for 27 yards and a score to give Stanford the 32-30 win ... After Fasani went down with an injury in the first quarter against #5 Texas, Lewis led the Cardinal to the upset win with a 15-yard scoring strike to DeRonnie Pitts with 1:12 remaining ... In six games, including three starts (vs. Arizona, at Notre Dame, at Oregon State), Lewis is 66-of-149 for 851 yards with six touchdowns and five interceptions ... The Long Beach native threw three of those six touchdowns in the victory over the Longhorns ... Lewis, who starred at Long Beach Poly High School, came to The Farm after being named the 1998 Gatorade National High School Football Player of the Year and a Parade Magazine First Team Prep All-American.
HOWARD NAMED ONE OF 12 LOMBARDI AWARD SEMIFINALISTS: Earlier this month, fifth-year senior DT Willie Howard was named as one of 12 semifinalists for the 2000 Rotary Lombardi Award, given annually to the nation's top lineman ... Howard, who was a 2000 Preseason First Team All-American selection by Athlon and Second Team Preseason All-American pick by Street & Smith's, won the 1999 Morris Award, emblematic of the top lineman in the Pacific-10 Conference ... Thus far this season, Howard, who has made 41 consecutive starts dating back to 1997, has 30 tackles (19 unassisted), five tackles for loss (-26 yards) and three quarterback sacks (-24 yards) ... He has recorded a tackle-for-loss in four games this year, and 15 of his last 20 dating back to '98 ... All totaled, he has 36 career tackles-for-loss (-157 yards) and 20.5 career sacks (-124 yards) ... Last season, Howard emerged as the leader - both on and off the field - of Stanford's defensive line unit known as the 'Trench Dogs' by finishing third in the Pac-10 in both quarterback sacks (10, -60 yards) and tackles-for-loss (19, -79 yards) in '99 ... He recorded five tackles, including one for a loss, in the Rose Bowl against Wisconsin despite playing with ACL damage and an MCL sprain to his right knee that was suffered in the regular season finale against Notre Dame just five weeks earlier.
KERRY CARTER TURNS IN RECORD-SETTING PERFORMANCE: Sophomore RB Kerry Carter tied the Stanford record for rushing touchdowns in a game with four against USC ... Carter's scoring runs of 2, 3, 4 and 20 yards helped him join Darrin Nelson (1981 vs. Oregon State) and Tommy Vardell (1990 vs. Notre Dame) as the only Stanford players to rush for four scores in a game ... Carter finished with 20 carries for a career-high 124 yards, which marked Stanford's first 100-yard rushing performance of the season ... On the year, Carter has carried the ball 113 times for 468 yards (4.1 ypc), after rushing for 330 yards on 87 carries as a true freshman last season.