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Know Thy Enemy: Stanford Cardinal

Who are these Cardinal from The Farm?

NCAA Football: Stanford at Central Florida Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports

2019 record: 1-2 (0-1)

Key Numbers + Info (2019 season)

Head coach: David Shaw

OOC Opponents: Northwestern, UCF, Notre Dame

Points per game: 21.33

Points allowed per game: 32.33

Avg. yards per rush: 3.8

Avg. yards per rush allowed: 3.9

Avg. rush yards per game: 115.3

Avg. rush yards per game allowed: 135.3

Rushing TDs: 2 for, 6 against

Avg. pass yards per game: 234.33

Avg. pass yards per game allowed: 280.33

Passing TDs: 3 for, 7 against

Collective Pass Completion Rate: 58%

Collective Pass Completion Rate Against: 69%

Top rusher: Cameron Scarlett (51 carries for 224 yards and one TD)

Top receiver: Colby Parkinson (17 receptions for 178 yards)

Top tackler: Casey Toohill (20 tackles, four tackle for loss, two sacks)


  • After three games, the Cardinal are at a 56 to 44 pass to run ratio. Their opponents are at a 54 to 46 run to pass ratio while running 16 less plays than Stanford.
  • This season, they are losing the total offense battle to their opponents by a margin of 1,247 to 1,049. The Cardinal have been outgained more heavily in the passing game (841 to 703) than the run game (408 to 306) thus far. It’s virtually even in rushing yards per attempt (3.9 to 3.8) but the pass game where the stark difference lies (9.34 allowed to 5.91 gained)
  • In their past two losses, Stanford has been dominated in the passing game, allowing 11.42 yards per attempt to USC and 11.57 to UCF, respectively. In comparison, their numbers were a paltry 6.58 and 4.76.

Key players to watch

1. Paulson Adebo 6’1 184 CB Junior

  • Adebo is arguably the best cornerback prospect in the nation this year. He’s a big corner that was a former receiver so his ball skills are great. NFL teams will covet his H/W/L if/when he declares for the draft.

2. Cameron Scarlett 6’1 216 RB RS Senior

  • A bigger back and the heir apparent to Bryce Love is finally getting a shot to be the bellcow this year. He has prior experience returning kicks but it appears that he has given up those duties. NFL teams will love that versatility. The pass game needs a bit of work.

3. K.J. Costello 6’5 216 QB RS Junior

  • He was injured in the season opener so not much can be gleaned from the 2019 season aso of yet. He fits the profile of a big and physical pocket passer but he has surprising pocket awareness and can evade pressure well. Has complete command of the offense. Inconsistent in his reads.

4. Colby Parkinson 6’7 235 TE Junior

  • One of the better tight end prospects in the nation and leading receiver for the Cardinal. A more athletic Devin Funchess if you will.

Keys to an Oregon win

  • The LOS. Stanford lost a huge asset in starting left tackle Walker Little and his replacement isn’t faring too well. Andy Avalos will more than likely send pressure to that side to warm the kid up. Offensively, the Ducks need to get their right side cleaned up as Brady Aiello will likely start while CT starts at center for an injured Jake Hanson. An example of Stanford’s new LT being beaten by UCF and a play where I’m concerned about the OL:
  • The Non Adebo Match-up. The Ducks need to target the receiver that isn’t matched up with Paulson Adebo in order to have success in the passing game. He’s that good. Can Justin Herbert make the right reads and Arroyo call a game away from PA?
  • Defense. Coach Avalos needs to keep on keeping on against a Cardinal offense that has been “struggling” along so far this season. Don’t be fooled by the box score stats, their past two losses have been garbage time scores. Costello didn’t look the same draft prospect in his first action back last week after missing the USC contest due to the “malicious” hit he took in the opener.

Keys to an Oregon loss

  • Mental Strength. We all saw it last season. This team wasn’t mentally strong enough to compete in road games. They were down and out for the count as soon as something remotely bad happened. This is the first true road game of the season so we’ll see how far Coach Cristobal has developed his charges’ mental strength and acuity.
  • Turnovers. The great equalizer between teams aren’t equally talented. Can the Ducks avoid the costly turnover this time around?
  • Run game. Some consistency would be great. Fortunately the depth of the RB room has shown itself but a lead guy has to step up and take the reins. The highly touted offensive line hasn’t been consistent, either so that needs shoring up. I get having fresh legs helps a lot but a constant rotation can’t be any good for development.

What are the odds?

The Westgate Superbook has Oregon as 10 point favorites while the O/U is set at 57.5 points. The money line is Oregon -400 Stanford +300

William Hill has Oregon as 10.5 point favorites while the O/U is set 57.5. The money line is Oregon -380 Stanford +310.

DraftKings has Oregon as 10.5 point favorites while their O/U is 57. The money line is Oregon -375 Stanford +280