Arguably Stanford's most impressive win of the 2010 season was against #15 Arizona, a 42-17 pummeling of the Wildcats. The Cardinal never looked backed after jumping out to a 21-3 first half lead as Stanford maintained a comfortable 18-25 point separation throughout the second half. In 2010 Arizona held teams to an average of 343.25 yards (37th) and 21.58 points (33rd), Stanford gained 510 yards and held the ball for 37:03. Their defense surrendered yards (428), but made plays when they had to in order to keep points off the board.
Below is a breakdown of some game changing/interesting plays that caught my eye.
Stanford set the tone for the entire game with a well executed, forceful touchdown blow to Arizona's neck on their first possession by way of a play action touchdown pass to Chris Owusu.
After motioning, Stanford lines up in an offset I look. Arizona loads the box and defends with 8 men leaving their corners in one-on-one coverage with safety support over the top.
Let's be honest the first week of bowl games are usually filled with bottom feeder BCS schools and smaller schools who aren't that talented. That said, these games often end up pretty entertaining with a ton of points scored. The Las Vegas Bowl is clearly the shining star for the first seven games of the 2010-11 Bowl season with Boise State taking on Utah. However, don't let the lack of "name" teams scare you off, keep an eye on the games, you never know which one is going to be the one that combines for 80+ points and goes down to the wire.
Saturday, December 18
New Mexico - BYU -12 vs UTEP 2:00 pm ESPN
Humanitarian - Fresno State vs Northern Illinois -1 5:30 pm ESPN
New Orleans - Ohio U. vs Troy -1.5 9:00 pm ESPN
@alparker11 offers up this picture of the ACC Championship Trophy chilling in the lounge outside the Blacksburg offices of Beamer Co. I would have filched it, the Frankinator has three others.
The Hokies finally got off the schnide Sunday afternoon, snapping a three-game losing streak with a 79-69 victory over Penn State. Despite playing without senior guard Dorenzo Hudson, the Hokies found a spark in sophomore Erick Green.
Green tied his career high with 15 points, including a crucial three-pointer to ignite a 10-0 second half run to counter an 8-0 run by Penn State. The Winchester, VA native played his best game as a Hokie, nailing 6-of-11 shots, including 2-of-5 from long distance.
Tech built an 11-point halftime lead after finally showing some offensive motion. Despite a week off, the Hokies were crisp on the offensive end, making extra passes and creating open shots. The balanced attack led to a 62.1% shooting percentage in the first half and a 44-33 advantage. On defense, the Hokies created multiple transition opportunities by gathering long rebounds and forcing the issue against a weak Nittany Lion squad.
Despite the 11-point advantage, the Hokies came out flat in the second half and saw their lead shrink to three before Green's clutch shooting. The Nittany Lions wouldn't go away, crawling back to within eight before the Hokies put the final nail in the coffin. In what could be considered the turning point of the season, Tech broke out a quick 6-0 run in 45 seconds that was punctuated by a Victor Davila block on one end and a thunderous dunk that forced a Penn State timeout.
Who: Virginia Tech Hokies (4-4, 1-2 home) vs Penn State Nittany Lions (7-2, 0-1 road)
When: Sunday, December 12 @ 1:00 p.m.
TV: Comcast Sportsnet
Where: Cassell Coliseum, Blacksburg, Virginia
The Opponent: The Hokies host their second Big Ten team in the Cassell this season as 7-2 Penn State comes to Blacksburg on a mini two-game win streak. Their 7-2 record is a tad misleading, as all seven of the victories have come against teams with RPI's higher than 122. The two losses were by a combined 36 points to Ole Miss and Maryland. Plus, their last two wins over Duquesne and Mount St. Mary's were each by four points.
The story with Penn State is guard Talor Battle (6-0, 170 lbs). The senior lit Tech up last year in State College, scoring 32 points before missing a tough layup that would've tied the game as time expired. Battle made five three-pointers in the game and was 12-of-26 from the field. This year, Battle again leads the Nittany Lions with 19.4 points per game. He's scored in double digits in all but one game this year, including 21 of the team's 39 in the 62-39 loss to Maryland.
Oregon is responsible for the only blemish on an otherwise pristine Stanford record (11-1). The Cardinal took an early, and what looked like, commanding 21-3 lead over the Ducks, but could not hold on as day turned to night in a raucous Autzen Stadium. I wouldn't say Stanford lost the game as much as Oregon won it. Sure, Stanford turned the ball over four times in the second half, including once on downs starting from 3rd and goal at the 1 (finally stopped on 4th and 1 from the 6). Additionally, Luck's two interceptions were desperate attempts to get back into a game that was slipping away. Therefore, I believe it was more a case of Oregon executing flawlessly on offense and pressuring Luck in the pocket–something that was severely missing from the first half.
After watching the replay last night, I know more than ever that this is an excellent, tough as nails, and well coached football team.
Stanford on Offense
Their physicality, tempo, varied formations and precise execution reminds me of a NFL team.
The "Diamond" formation is all the rage these days.