Archive for September 7th, 2015

Northwestern leaves flat Cardinal in purple daze after 16-6 season-opening defeat

September 7, 2015

By Matthew E. Milliken
Sept. 7, 2015

Contrary to what the record books would have you believe, the Stanford Cardinal didn’t field a single football team in 2014.

On paper, last year’s club had an 8-5 record. But those victories and losses were really the product of two teams. There was the vigorous, buoyant Dr. Jekyll that ran up no fewer than 31 points apiece in seven games over Davis, Army, Washington State, Oregon State, Cal, UCLA and Maryland — all victories. And then there was the sickly, anemic Mr. Hyde that mustered no more than 17 points per outing in five games against USC, Notre Dame, Arizona State, Oregon and Utah — all losses. (The Cardinal also squeaked out a 20-13 road win against Washington in a game that the Huskies arguably squandered by attempting a questionable fake punt near midfield.)

2014’s brightest moments were unquestionably the resounding Big Game win, the Cardinal’s fifth straight against its closest rival; the surprising thumping of UCLA, a top-10 team, at the Rose Bowl; and the 45-21 domination of Maryland in the Foster Farms Bowl. The year’s worst moments were… Well, it’s hard to choose whether rock bottom was the 13-10 home loss to USC, the 17-14 loss to the Fighting Irish, or weak road efforts against Arizona State and Oregon. For my money, though, the year’s worst outing was a 20-17 home (!) loss in double overtime (!!) to Utah (!!!).

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