That's right, I'm back. Sorry to disappear there for a few weeks, but I had some stuff (I GRADUATED) come up (AND I GOT MY ASS A JOB) that I couldn't drop (AND THEY'RE PAYING FOR GRADUATE SCHOOL). Anyhow, I'm back now, and I'm here to focus on some Cowboy football (and not on basketball transfers, contract negotiations, and pot busts).
Here we are to take a look at the Stanford defense, and see how we can try and score some points. First, the numba's; the Cardinal ranks 25th in total defense, 5th in rushing defense, and 62nd in pass defense (umm, they should probably be afraid). Now, I know you will see that rushing defense and be alarmed, but let's look at the rushing offense's they've faced. In order: 110th, 114th, 113th, 29th, 106th, 111th, 67th, 57th, 118th, 5th (and they lost this game), 48th, and 51st. So what does that tell you? Well, apparently they don't run the ball in the PAC 12, and we should expect to have success against the Tree on the ground.
Follow me over the jump for a look at the Cardinal pass defense, some analysis, and some dick jokes...
Still here? Good, let's look at the pass defense numbers. Stanford has faced, again in order, the: 23rd, 28th, 3rd, 81st, 55th, 9th, 52nd, 15th, 19th, 68th, 39th, and 33rd. Now, they've faced a couple good passing teams, but for the most part just middle of the road teams. And against that onslaught they've given up an average of 248 yards a game through the air. I think we'll put up at least 350. The single best passing team they faced was Arizona, and we shut them down most of the day. Their defensive backs struggle against physical receivers, and their linebackers can't cover very well.
Okay, but what about turnovers? Stanford comes in 25th in turnover margin, forcing a total of 21 turnovers (we forced 42). I would say that category is strongly in our favor. And it's also (and yes, I know this is weak) probably the key to the game. Against USC (a game they almost lost) Stanford won the turnover battle 2-1 (though the one was a costly pick six that should have cost them the game). Against Oregon (a game they did lose), they lost the turnover battle 2-5, and were blown out 53-30. Finally, against Cal (the only other close game they had), they won the turnover margin 4-1. What does this tell you? Well, the only games that Stanford lost the turnover battle and still won were against Colorado and Washington State (juggernauts, I know), so I am 100% certain, that if we win the turnover battle, we will win. Even if its 1-0, 2-1, or something along those lines.
Fine, so let's add this all up and see what it means. Stanford struggles against the pass (though, to be totally fair, they're usually way ahead and teams must pass on them), they haven't faced a really good rushing team (outside of Oregon), they force less turnovers, but they're 11-1. I don't want this to seem like we will crush them, because Andrew Luck can still rally the troops, their senior laden, and they know how to win, but I think we will be able to score on them. I'll drop some players to watch sometime Friday, so I hope this'll tide you over til then. Sorry this post sucks so bad, but it's hard to get back into the writing swing.
What's that? I forgot the dick jokes? Shit, well here you go.