Roundup: Stanford hangs on in Tempe, snaps 2-game skid
It wasn’t always pretty (and maybe a little too conservative for some folks), but the Cardinal showed some serious grit (and a stout defense – hello there, Paulson Adebo) in holding on to a 20-13 victory at Arizona State. Tom FitzGerald has the game story in the preceding link.
Greg Moore of the Arizona Republic is of the belief that the Sun Devils’ loss to Stanford “severely jeopardizes” Arizona State’s chances of making a bowl game. At 3-4, the Sun Devils need to find a way to scratch out three wins against the remaining schedule: at USC, vs. Utah, vs. UCLA, at Oregon and at Arizona. ASU will be favored in maybe one or two of those games. Doesn’t mean Herm Edwards and Co. can’t win more.
Before any of the gridiron action begins, make sure you wake up bright and early Saturday morning at 6 a.m. if you’re in the Pacific Time Zone to catch College GameDay live from Pullman. You’ve probably seen the videos of Cougar fans welcoming College GameDay to the Palouse, but just how excited are they? So excited that Pullman issued an emergency declaration to deal with the large crowds, Theo Lawson reports. Also, check out this article from Vince Grippi of The Athletic on the story of Ol’ Crimson and how the Washington State flag found its way on every College GameDay show for 15 years. I don’t normally link to subscription sites, but this is a special occasion (oh yeah, 25th-ranked Washington State is hosting 12th-ranked Oregon at 4:30 p.m. PT on FOX, which is the whole reason for all this).
The Ducks are riding high after an emotional overtime victory over rival Washington coming into this Wazzu game, and the folks at SB Nation – Alex Kirshner and Richard Johnson in particular – look at how Mario Cristobal is “supersizing” Chip Kelly’s offense at Oregon.
As big as the game in the Palouse is, the one in the SLC could be just as consequential with Utah hosting USC in a battle for Pac-12 South positioning (5 p.m. PT/6 p.m. MT, Pac-12 Networks). Trent Wood of the Deseret News takes a moment to explain how good the Utah secondary really is – despite allowing big passing days to Washington State’s Gardner Minshew and Stanford’s K.J. Costello, the Utes are 18th in the nation in pass efficiency defense and first in the Pac-12 in that metric.
The Trojans head into this game – and the rest of the season – without star linebacker and emotional leader Porter Gustin, and J. Brady McCullough of the Los Angeles Times spends this article looking at how USC head coach Clay Helton will fill the void left behind by Gustin’s absence on the field.
The Beavers hope to get their first Pac-12 win of 2018 when Cal comes to town for a 1 p.m. PT kickoff on Pac-12 Networks, and Nick Daschel of The Oregonian/OregonLive gives us Oregon State injury updates for the Cal game.
In traveling up to Corvallis, Cal is focused on containing Oregon State running back Jermar Jefferson, notes Rusty Simmons. Sounds like a solid plan of attack; don’t want to forget about him on the scouting report.
Ahead of the Huskies’ clash with Colorado (12:30 p.m. PT/1:30 p.m. MT, FOX), John Taylor of NBC Sports notes that Washington linebacker Amandre Williams is transferring.
For the Buff perspective on things, may we suggest you check out the BuffZone.com Podcast and its preview of the Colorado-Washington game. The diligent Brian Howell and Pat Rooney are your co-hosts.
The Bruins will look to make it two straight when they welcome Arizona to town for the nightcap (7:30 p.m. PT, ESPN2), and Thuc Nhi Nguyen notes the depth UCLA has on defense, as evidenced by all the redshirt freshmen putting in work on that side of the ball.
In this latest edition of Michael Lev’s Cats Stats, Arizona’s third-down struggles are discussed. Lev surmises that a subpar rushing attack is to blame.