With the Huskies entering a weekend off, there’s not much news coming from Montlake.
So I thought I’d lead off today’s links with a little look ahead at the next opponent, the Stanford Cardinal, which comes to CenturyLink Field Thursday at 6 p.m.
Stanford has yet to update its depth chart and game notes for the trip to UW. But here’s the depth chart for the USC game, which doesn’t figure to change much for UW. Worth noting there are just six seniors listed as starters — three on each side of the ball — and only three other seniors listed as backups.
A couple of the seniors are really key players, such as tailback Stepfan Taylor and linebackers Chase Thomas and Shyane Skov. But the numbers indicate Stanford — which has been pulling in highly-rated recruiting classes the last few years — isn’t going away anytime soon.
Here also are Stanford’s updated stats, which take on more relevance after the USC win. Among several numberes that stand out:
— Stanford has outscored foes 34-7 in the first quarter. That’ll be a key Thursday as the Huskies cannot afford to let the Cardinal get an early lead and then rely on the running game. UW will have to get some points on the board early and maybe force Stanford’s first-year starting QB Josh Nunes to play from behind in what will be the first road game of his career (the first quarter so far has been UW’s best as the Huskies have outscored teams 31-14).
— Stanford has a 9-3 edge in turnovers. UW has been good in that area, as well, with a 6-3 edge in turnovers. Barely needs to be stated the importance turnovers could have on this game.
— Stanford is holding teams to 1.7 yards per carry while UW is getting 3.3, and Stanford us rushing for 4.3 yards per carry while the Huskies are allowing 4.5. So that means Stanford is plus-2.6 in rushing yards per carry while UW is minus-1.2. If those averages hold, it’ll likely be a long night for the Huskies.
— One stat where UW has the edge is third-down conversions. UW is 18-43 on offense and 16-39 on defense; Stanford is 12-39 on offense, 13-47 on defense.
Also, the Stanford SBNation site Rule of Tree has a few good articles on the Cardinal written by former Stanford QB Todd Husask — who led the team to the 1999 Pac-12 title. His articles include this one on how David Shaw has kept the winning going, and this one on some of the key strategies behind the win over USC.
You can see some of what Husak is talking about in terms of the long Taylor run and a few other key plays in this highlight package below of the Cardinal-USC game:
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IN OTHER NEWS. …
— Ted Miller chatted yesterday and said among other things he’s curious to see how Nunes plays at CenturyLink Thursday in what will be his first road game.
— The Titans want Jake Locker to be more patient.
— Here’s the Pac-12 Rundown from The Oregonian.
— And lots of links from The Spokesman-Review.
— Among the linked stories is this column from John Blanchette on WSU’s injury-reporting policies.
— PacificTakes with a potentially encouraging update on DirecTV.
— ESPN.com’s Pac-12 blog is letting fans vote on whether there ought to be a standardized injury policy in the conference.
— Bill Plaschke of the LA Times tells Lane Kiffin to chill out.
— Longtime Cal beat guy Jeff Faurado makes his picks for the week.
— And Jon Wilner makes his picks.
— UW plays Oregon after it faces Stanford, and SI.com’s Stewart Mandel says the Ducks’ defense is often overlooked.
— USA Today examines Jim Mora’s hot start at UCLA.
— Ken Goe with lots of links around the conference as well as a look at Oregon’s non-conference schedule.
— John Henderson of the Denver Post details how bad things are at Colorado.
— Is LSU’s coaching staff the best in the country at developing talent?