Oct 2, 2021; Stanford, California, USA;  Stanford Cardinal quarterback Tanner McKee (18) throws the ball during the first quarter against the Oregon Ducks at Stanford Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

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Stanford, seeking second straight upset, faces No. 22 ASU

After upsetting then-No. 3 Oregon at home last week, Stanford goes on the road to face another ranked Pac-12 team — No. 22 Arizona State — on Friday night.

The Cardinal (3-2, 2-1 Pac-12) visits Tempe, Ariz., fresh off a 31-24 overtime win over the Ducks. The Sun Devils (4-1, 2-0) sit in first place in the conference’s Southern Division following a 42-23 road win over UCLA.

“You don’t always get what you want, like the Rolling Stones say, but sometimes you get what you need,” Stanford coach David Shaw said of the victory over Oregon. “I think we needed that. We needed to be ahead and fight through adversity and find a way to win against a really good football team.”

Stanford lost to visiting UCLA 35-24 the previous week.

Arizona State overpowered the Bruins, although the Cardinal defense allowed similar yards to UCLA as the Sun Devils’ unit. UCLA gained 455 yards against Stanford and 435 against Arizona State.

The biggest difference is Stanford rushed for only 67 yards against the Bruins while Arizona State’s potent running game produced 178 yards vs. UCLA. The Sun Devils’ Rachaad White (nine carries for 69 yards), DeaMonte Trayanum (16-67) and quarterback Jayden Daniels (6-45) were productive on the ground last week.

Daniels, who also completed 13 of 19 pass attempts for 287 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions, was selected the Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week. LaDarius Henderson, the Bruins’ starting left guard, was honored as the Offensive Lineman of the Week.

“At the hotel, I think the guys were dialed in,” Arizona State coach Herm Edwards said of the win over UCLA. “At meetings, they were dialed in all week, knowing that the opponent we’re playing is a very good football team, and I give them credit.

“I give our staff credit for getting these guys ready to play, and now we’ve got a short week. We can’t celebrate too long. We’ve got a good team in Stanford that just beat Oregon, so we have to get ready to prepare all of a sudden.”

Shaw also voiced concern about the Friday night game, especially with having to travel on Wednesday, limiting preparation time.

“Guys played a lot of snaps (against Oregon), they’ve got to get off their feet,” Shaw said. “They’ve got to rest. (The practice week) will be highly modified for us, slightly physical, mostly mental, and then we’ll have a walkthrough day and we’ll get on a plane.”

Stanford fared better in the running game against Oregon, gaining 124 yards, led by Nathaniel Peat’s 78 yards on 15 carries.

Cardinal quarterback Tanner McKee completed 20 of 36 pass attempts for 230 yards with three touchdown and no interceptions. He spread the ball to seven receivers out of Stanford’s pro-style set.

“They use a bunch of tight ends, personnel groups,” Edwards said. “They plod their way along and have some explosive receivers.

“Their games are really close. When you get to the fourth quarter, anything can happen. They showed that against Oregon.”

–Field Level Media

Field Level Media
Sport Writer & Editor
FLM has a North American focus while tying into regional and hyper-local resources – providing the ability to distribute compelling content through the writing of professional journalists. As the U.S. sports content provider to dozens of digital and print media publishers through strategic partnerships with the likes of Reuters and Nielsen Sports, FLM covers the nuts and bolts with a breaking news desk and game event coverage.

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