Football To Host Arizona State Saturday, September 22nd
Sept. 14, 2001
Date: September 22, 2001
Kickoff: 7:00 pm
Location: Stanford Stadium (85,500)
Radio: KTCT (1050 am). Tim Roye, Bob Murphy. Pre-game show begins at 5:30 pm
Internet: Live game audio and live game stats on www.gostanford.com
The Cardinal: Stanford University aims for its first 2-0 start since the 1995 season when it hosts Arizona State this Saturday at Stanford Stadium ... The Cardinal, which has won three straight games dating back to the end of the 2000 campaign, defeated Boston College 38-22 on September 8 in its season opener ... It was Stanford's second straight season-opening victory ... A win over Arizona State would help match the 1995 season opening performance, which saw Stanford win at San Jose State (47-33) and Utah (27-20) to open Tyrone Willingham's inaugural campaign
Last Week: Due to the tragic events of last week, Stanford's football schedule was altered, including practice and game schedules ... The San Jose State game scheduled for September 15 was postponed until December 1 ... It will be played at 2:00 pm at Spartan Stadium and will be the season regular season finale for both schools ... Stanford held its regularly scheduled practice on Tuesday, September 11, but did not practice on Wednesday, September 12 ... The team then held practices on Thursday, Friday and Saturday (Sept. 13-15) before returning to a regular game-week schedule on Sunday, September 16 in preparation for this Saturday's game with Arizona State.
Schedule Notes: * With the San Jose State game now scheduled for December 1, Stanford will have two regular season games after The Big Game with California ... Stanford plays Cal on November 17, then hosts Notre Dame on November 24 followed by the San Jose State contest ... The last time a Stanford football team played two regular season games after The Big Game was in 1899 when Stanford played Multnomah (Portland) and a team called 'All-Seattle' ... With the postponement of the San Jose State game and the open date on October 6, Stanford will have played just three games as of October 12 ... The last time a Stanford team played as few as three games by October 12 was in 1962 ... During that season, Stanford played Tulane on September 21 (W, 6-3), Michigan State on September 29 (W, 16-13) and Oregon State on October 6 (L, 27-0) ... Stanford's fourth game that season was vs. Washington State in Pullman on October 13.
Pac-10 Openers: Stanford has won its last two Pac-10 openers and four of the six under Tyrone Willingham from 1995-00 ... The Cardinal won at Washington State a year ago in Pullman (24-10) ... In 1999, Stanford beat WSU at home 54-17 ... Under Willingham, Stanford's Pac-10 openers include: a 28-21 win at Oregon in 1995, 27-6 loss at Washington in 1996, 27-24 win at Oregon State in 1997, 31-14 loss at Arizona in 1998, 54-17 victory vs. Washington State in '99 and last year's 24-10 win at Washington State.
Arizona State Series: Arizona State leads the all-time series with Stanford 11-6, but the Cardinal has won the last two meetings with the Sun Devils in 1999 and 2000 by 20 and 22 points ... Stanford defeated ASU in 1999 in Tempe 50-30 and a year ago at Stanford, 29-7 ... At Stanford Stadium, ASU has won five of the eight meetings ... A year ago, the Cardinal won 29-7 in its most lopsided win of the season ... Stanford scored on offense, defense and special teams as it limited the Sun Devils to just 23 yards rushing and a season-low 174 yards in total offense ... Kerry Carter rushed for 103 yards, Luke Powell returned a punt 51 yards for a touchdown and the Stanford defense registered a season-high six sacks ... Cardinal head coach Tyrone Willingham is 3-3 vs. Arizona State
Experience Across The Board: Stanford returns 16 starters and 39 letterwinners from last year's team that finished 5-6 overall and 4-4 in the Pacific-10 Conference (fourth place) ... The Cardinal returns nine starters on offense, seven on defense and both kickers from a year ago ... The experience that the Cardinal lacked in 2000 has given way to a veteran club in 2001 ... The Cardinal finds itself with a defense made up of 10 players in their final season of eligibility, including its entire starting secondary and linebacking corps.
Tyrone Willingham: Head coach Tyrone Willingham is in his seventh season at the helm of the Stanford University football program ... Only two other coaches in school history have enjoyed a longer tenure on The Farm than Willingham - Glenn 'Pop' Warner and John Ralston, who both coached at Stanford for nine seasons ... Willingham's tenure also ranks tied for second among current Pacific-10 Conference head coaches ... Willingham, who has twice been named Pac-10 Coach of the Year (1995 & 1999), owns a 36-33-1 (.521) career record following the 2001 season opening win over Boston College ... He has led the Cardinal to three bowl games, including a Pac-10 Championship and a trip to the Rose Bowl in 2000 ... The Rose Bowl appearance was Stanford's first in 28 seasons ... Willingham enters Saturday's game with a 3-3 career record against San Jose State ... This week's contest also marks Willingham's return to the stadium where he made his collegiate head coaching debut with a 47-33 win on September 2, 1995 ... The win kicked off a 7-4-1 season that saw Willingham lead the Cardinal to the Liberty Bowl in his inaugural campaign.
Fasani Thrives In Starting Lineup: Fifth-year senior quarterback Randy Fasani has put up impressive numbers since becoming the Cardinal's starter last fall ... In the nine games Fasani has started since winning the job, Stanford is 6-3 and averaging 30.7 points per contest ... In the three games he missed because of injury, Stanford is 0-3 with 7.7 points per game ... The trend continued in the 2001 season opener as the Granite Bay, California native went 15-of-29 for 232 yards with a career-high tying four touchdowns and no interceptions in the 38-22 win over Boston College ... In the second half alone, Fasani was 10-of-15 for 156 yards and two scores ... Fasani, who married longtime girlfriend Monica Stahr this summer, threw for 1,400 yards and 11 touchdowns in 2000, and also proved to be a great play-maker, tremendous runner and an athlete capable of making plays down the stretch ... He recorded one of his best games against San Jose State, going 18-of-42 for 373 yards with a career-high four touchdowns and one interception ... Also last season, Fasani threw for 242 yards and three touchdowns in the Big Game at California, including the game-winner in overtime ... He also engineered drives of 64-, 58- and 48- yards in the final six minutes against Pac-10 champ Washington to erase a 24-6 deficit ... Prior to becoming the Cardinal's starting QB in 2000, Fasani had also received playing time at tight end, linebacker and special teams.
Awards 'Watch' List: FS Tank Williams, OG Eric Heitmann and ILB Coy Wire are all listed on various 'Watch' Lists for national awards ... Williams is on the Jim Thorpe Watch List for the nation's top defensive back ... Both Heitmann and Wire are included on the Lombardi Award Watch List for the best lineman in college football.
Teyo's Time: Sophomore wide receiver Teyo Johnson was impressive in his collegiate debut as he caught four passes for 51 yards and one touchdown while showing the kind of athleticism that makes him one of the nation's top two-sport athletes ... After redshirting last season as a reserve quarterback,Johnson, who is also a member of Stanford's nationally-ranked basketball team, was moved to wide receiver during the final week of spring practice ... At 6-7 and 245, he presents a big target for the Cardinal and a major problem for the defense ... Against Boston College, he caught a 14-yard touchdown pass from Randy Fasani and had a 22-yard reception in which he used a basketball-like spin move to avoid tacklers ... As a true freshman in 2000-01, Johnson was used as a reserve forward on the basketball team ... He was named to the Honorable Mention All-Pac-10 Freshman team after averaging 4.1 ppg and 2.2 rpg ... He will contend for a starting assignment next season ... Johnson is the younger brother of Riall, who recently graduated from Stanford after a stellar four-year career on The Farm in which he was twice led the Pac-10 in sacks and was named First-Team All-Conference in 2000 ... Riall is currently playing with the Cincinnatti Bengals.
The Top 10 List: Both Kerry Carter and Brian Allen could crack the Cardinal's all-time top-10 rushing list in 2001 ... Allen, in his final season of eligibility, has gained 1,277 rushing yards in his career and needs just 316 to move into the top-10 list ... Carter, who still has two years of eligibility remaining, has gained 1,131 yards and is 462 yards shy of the top 10:
Heitmann Hits: Senior Eric Heitmann, now in his third season in the Cardinal's starting lineup, has earned the reputation as one of the top offensive linemen in the nation ... Named Honorable Mention All-Pac-10 in 1999 and Second-Team All-Conference last season, Heitmann is a consensus preseason First-Team All-Pac-10 selection and a First-Team All-America choice by Athlon's and Preview Sports ... Street & Smith's named Heitmann as the No. 6 offensive guard in the country ...A native of Katy. Texas, Heitmann has played in all 35 games of his Stanford career and started the last 24.
The O-Line: Stanford returns its top six offensive linemen from last year's team and is receiving recognition as one of the top groups in the nation entering the 2001 campaign ... Athlon's Preseason Magazine ranked the Cardinal's O-Line No. 5 in the nation while Lindy's had Stanford at No. 10 ...Stanford's opening day starting five of tackles Kirk Chambers and Kwame Harris, guards Eric Heitmann and Greg Schindler and center Zack Quaccia represent four players who starters a year ago and a sophomore (Harris) who played as a true freshman and was one of the nation's top recruits two years ago ... In Heitmann, Schindler and Quaccia, the Cardinal has three players who are in the starting lineup for the third consecutive season ... The trio has combined to start 68 games the past two-plus years ... Schindler was the team's starter at right tackle the past two years, but has been moved to guard this season to make room for Harris, one of the most talented young lineman in the nation ... Stanford has the talent and experience to be one of the best offensive lines on The Farms in recent years.
Tank's Tale: Clevan 'Tank' Williams has earned the reputation as one of the best safeties in all of college football and a candidate for the Jim Thorpe Award ... Williams, a 6-3, 225 pound free safety from Bay St. Louis, Mississippi, was named preseason First-Team All-Pac-10 and Honorable Mention All-America by several publications ... Lindy's rated him as the No. 15 safety in the country ... ESPN's Mel Kuiper listed Williams as the fifth best senior safety prospect in the nation (tied with teammate Coy Wire) ... 'Physically, he's everyting you look for in a football player,' says Cardinal secondary coach Denny Schuler. 'He's got cornerback speed, but linebacker size. Clearly, a big-time NFL player.'
High Wire: Senior ILB Coy Wire is expected to be one of the top linebackers in college football in 2001 ... He is listed on the Lombardi Awards Watch List as one of the top lineman in the nation ... ESPN's Mel Kuiper ranked Wire as the fifth best senior safety prospect in the country (along with teammate Tank Williams) and the 30th best player in college football ... He began the season as advertised, accounting for a team-leading 6.5 tackles and a blocked punt ... A running back his first two seasons at Stanford, Wire has the distinction of being the only Cardinal player in modern times to lead the team in rushing and tackles ...He was a running back in 1998 and '99 and, after redshirting the '97 season, he led the team in rushing in '98 ... He was then was moved to linebacker for the 2000 campaign, where he promptly earned the starting role and led the team in total tackles ... He enters the 2001 season as apreseason Honorable Mention All-America and all-conference selection ... 'A lot of what we're doing defensively is based on what Coy can do,' said defensive coordinator Kent Baer. ' No question, he's an honors candidate this season. He's one of the best defensive players in our conference.'
Wells Watch: Senior wide receiver Ryan Wells had an impressive start to the '01 season as he caught six passes for 138 yards and two touchdowns in the Cardinal's season opener vs. Boston College ... He is currently ranked second in the Pac-10 and tied for eighth nationally in receiving yards per game (138.0), tied for 10th in the NCAA and tied for second in the Pac-10 in scoring (12.0 ppg) and tied for 35th in the nation and fourth in the conference in receptions per game (6.0) ... The Middletown, Ohio native, who started seven games a year ago, caught TD passes of 46 and 69 yards from QB Randy Fasani ... Wells set single game highs for receptions, receiving yards, touchdowns and long reception ... A year ago, he had 19 catches for 201 yards and two touchdowns ... His longest reception as a Cardinal was a 46-yarder in his first game for Stanford in 1999 vs. Texas ... Against BC, Wells showed speed and quickness as he caught a pass over the middle and outran defenders en route to his 46-yard TD ... He also returned four kickoffs for 75 yards ... Wells is currently sixth all-time at Stanford with 981 career kickoff returns yards and fourth all-time in career kickoff return average.
Rushing Attack: Stanford returns all but 13 carries and 37 yards from last year's rushing attack that netted 1,528 yards on 452 carries ... In Kerry Carter (179-729-6), Brian Allen (117-460-0) and Casey Moore (50-224-3). Stanford returns its top three rushers from 2000 ... Randy Fasani, the team's fourth leading rusher, had 55 carries for 123 yards and two TDs in eight games ... The Cardinal returns 1,491 of its 1,528 yards, 439 of 452 carries and 11 of the 12 TDs it scored in '00.Rushing Tandem: Stanford's running back tandem of Kerry Carter and Brian Allen combined to for 124 yards and one touchdown on 29 carries last week vs. Boston College ... Carter gained 72 yards and scored one TD on 15 carries while Allen, who started for the 18th consecutive game, carried the ball 14 times for 52 yards ... Fullback Casey Moore chipped in with 16 yards on three carrries, giving the Cardinal's top three rushers 140 yards on 32 carrries.
The D-Line: Stanford's defensive line played well in last week's season opener with Boston College as it held Eagles running back William Green in check most of the game ... Green, who had 204 yards rushing the week before, wound up rushing for 103 yards on 25 carries ... In the first half, Stanford held Green to 39 yards on 14 carries ... The defensive line also recorded two sacks and several pressures of Eagle quarterbacks, who were being hurried and hit throughout the game ... Defensive lineman accounted for four tackles for loss and two sacks ... DT Matt Leonard had both sacks and two tackles for loss while Austin Lee and Marcus Hoover also had one tackle for loss , Leonard started six games a year ago, five at nose tackle, but was moved to defensive tackle in '01 to replace two-time All-Conference tackle Willie Howard (2nd round draft pick, Minnesota Vikings) ... Lee had started 11 games the past three years and is now being looked upon as a full-time starter for the first time in his career ... Hoover had also started 11 games entering the '01 season, including eight last year, and is expected to play a leading role on the defensive line ... At nose tackle, senior Trey Freeman made his debut vs. BC.
Experience: Stanford's 2001 club is one of the most experienced in recent years, especially on the defensive side of the ball ... Fourteen players who started last Saturday vs. BC are in their last season on The Farm, including nine on defense, four on offense and one kicker ... Only NT Trey Freeman and DT Matt Leonard will return in 2002 to the Cardinal defense... Lineman Austin Lee and Marcus Hoover, linebackers Coy Wire, Matt Friedrichs and Anthony Gabriel and the entire secondary in CB Ruben Carter and Ryan Fernandez, FS Tank Williams and SS Siimba Hodari are playing their final seasons at Stanford in 2001 ... Offensively, four starters are in their final seasons on The Farm, including QB Randy Fasani, RB Brian Allen, C Zack Quaccia and OG Eric Heitmann ... PK Mike Biselli is also in his final year on The Farm ... A year ago at this time, Stanford had just six starters in their final season of eligibility (WR DeRonnie Pitts, TE Russell Stewart, DT Willie Howard, DE Sam Benner, OLB Riall Johnson, SS Aaron Focht).
Secondary Story: Depth in the defensive backfield is one of the Cardinal's strengths in 2001 ... Not only are three starters back in FS Tank Williams and CB Ruben Carter and Ryan Fernandez, but quality reserves abound in the secondary ... In last week's season opener, Cardinal defensive backs intercepted two passes (Simba Hodari, Brian Taylor) and had four pass breakups (two for Taylor, Hodari, Fernandez) ... Williams, of course, is a candidate for the Jim Thorpe Award, presented to the top defensive back in the nation ... Carter (24 starts) and Fernandez (12 consecutive start) give the Cardinal two experienced CBs with proven ability ... Depth at CB will come from Taylor, sophs. Leigh Torrence and Stanley Wilson and senior Garry Cobb ... Hodari (three-year letterwinner) has locked up the starting spot at strong safety with senior Colin Branch close behind ... Sr. Jason White and soph. O.J. Atogwe also provide quality depth at the safety positions.
* RB Kerry Carter scored his 13th career rushing touchdown in the season opener vs. Boston College, tying him with Glyn Milburn for seventh on Stanford's all-time list ... Ahead of Carter are Bill Tarr (1953-55) with 16, Anthony Bookman (1994-97) with 17 and Mike Mitchell (1993-97) with 21.
* Defensive coordinator Kent Baer was the defensive coordinator at Arizona State under Bruce Snyder from 1992-94.
* Stanford had solid special teams play against Boston College ... Luke Powell returned a punt 49 yards to set up a touchdown, Coy Wire blocked a BC punt, PK Mike Biselli made all of his kicks (41-yard field goal, 5 PATs) and the Cardinal defensive teams did not allow a big play on BC returns (6 kickoff returns for 119 yards, one punt return for no yards) ... Punter Eric Johnson had a long of 48 yards and two punts land inside the 20.
* Sophomore Nick Sebes, playing in his first game, recorded his first carch and first TD catch with 2:04 remaining in the first period when he caught a 19-yard pass from a scrambling Randy Fasani ... It was also the Cardinal's first TD of the year.
* Players making their collegiate debuts against Boston College included CB Stanley Wilson, WR Teyo Johnson, ILB Amon Gordon,, FB Eran Landry, FS O.J. Atogwe, WR Greg Camarillo, RB Kenneth Tolon, CB Leigh Torrence, WR Brandon Royster, FB Jared Newberry, WR Nick Sebes, and TE Alex Smith
* PK Mike Biselli, a 1999 First-Team All-Pac-10 selection, moved past John Hopkins and into sixth place on Stanford's career PAT list with 80 ... He is also ninth all-time with 22 career field goals.
* Luke Powell is ranked third in the nation and first in the Pac-10 in punt returns, averaging 24.5 yards per return ... Powell, who had nine punt returns for 95 yards and one touchdown a year ago, had a 49 yard return that almost went for a TD last week vs. Boston College ... In his career, Powell has returned 11 punt returns for 144 yards.
* Stanford's offense ranks 13th in the nation in passing efficiency and tied for 16th in scoring.
* QB Randy Fasani is among the nation leaders in passing efficiency (12th NCAA) and total offense (tied for 22nd).