Pac-12 Notes – Nebraska Week


September 8th

… Foe Pause … 

Arizona State a surprising 2-0 after upsetting No. 15 Michigan State; No. 10 Stanford derails No. 17 USC

Arizona State rallies to beat No. 15 Michigan State 16-13” … Game story from ESPN

Love leads No. 10 Stanford past No. 17 USC 17-3” … Game story from ESPN

UCLA covers the spread … but still 0-2 after 49-21 loss to No. 6 Oklahoma

From ESPN … Kyler Murray passed for three touchdowns and ran for two, and No. 6 Oklahoma defeated UCLA 49-21 on Saturday, but lost star running back Rodney Anderson to a leg injury.

Anderson ran for 10 yards on the final play of the first quarter, and then got up slowly. He limped off on his own, and trainers tended to the preseason All-Big 12 pick before he headed to the locker room. He was back on the bench later, out of uniform.

Murray picked up the slack with 306 yards passing and 69 yards rushing. CeeDee Lamb had seven catches for 146 yards and Marquise Brown added 88 yards and a touchdown on four catches for the Sooners (2-0).

Oklahoma led 21-7 at halftime. The Sooners held the Bruins to 133 yards before the break and sacked UCLA freshman quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson five times. Thompson-Robinson started in place of the injured Wilton Speight.

In the third quarter, Lamb’s 66-yard punt return led to a 10-yard touchdown pass from Murray to A.D. Miller that put the Sooners up 35-7.

Thompson-Robinson completed 16 of 26 passes for 254 yards. Bolu Olorunfunmi ran for 56 yards and two touchdowns for UCLA, which fell to 0-2 under new coach Chip Kelly.

Arizona falls to 0-2 after 45-18 loss to Houston 

From ESPN … Houston quarterback D’Eriq King threw for four touchdowns and rushed for one as the Cougars beat Arizona 45-18 on Saturday.

King finished with 246 passing and 27 rushing yards while Houston improved to 2-0 on the season.

King connected with Marquez Stevenson on a 24-yard TD pass, scored on a 1-yard run, then hit tight end Romello Brooker for a 52-yard score and a 21-0 Houston lead after one quarter.

Arizona, playing uphill the rest of the game, never recovered.

UH scored two more times before halftime — on a 35-yard field goal from Dalton Witherspoon and on King’s 13-yard pass to Bryson Smith for a 31-0 lead.

Arizona quarterback Khalil Tate tweaked his ankle in the first half but remained in the game. The elusive quarterback, who came into the season in the Heisman Trophy conversation, looked sluggish at times, but finished the game completing 24 of 45 passes for 341 yards and two interceptions.

Arizona avoided the shut out, scoring its first points in the third quarter on a 49-yard field goal from Lucas Havrisik. Running back Darrius Smith scored on a 1-yard rush with 11 seconds remaining in the third quarter to give the Wildcats their first touchdown. With just over 11 minutes left in the game, Tate scored his only touchdown of the day on a 2-yard run.

Houston finished the game with 551 offensive yards (297 rushing, 254 passing) and will play another Power 5 Conference opponent, Texas Tech, next week.

Blowout wins for Oregon and Washington

“No. 9 Washington wakes up late in 45-3 win over North Dakota” … from ESPN


September 7th

… Foe Pause … 

Anatomy of a cupcake: How Oregon prepared for Portland State as a 50-point favorite

From The Athletic … Practice​ starts at​ 7:30 a.m. sharp in​ downtown Portland, and​ if​ the sound of​ whistles reverberating​ off​​ the buildings surrounding this urban campus in Oregon’s most-populated city doesn’t give it away, the skies above the practice field are a tell.

Portland State, an FCS football team preparing to play Oregon on Saturday, doesn’t have much it can brag about compared to its competition. The team doesn’t have a permanent home stadium, it doesn’t have an indoor practice field and it doesn’t have a fancy operations center, like the one 100 miles south of here in Eugene.

What coach Bruce Barnum does have is drones. Three of them, to be exact. And from 7:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, those drones take off, shoot film and return to earth with depleted batteries, only to shoot back up into the sky at 15-minute intervals.

The Vikings position the drones at varying heights. Some of the assistants like the lower-angled views behind the play, allowing them to focus in on footwork. Barnum, in his fourth season as coach and play-caller, likes the drone to climb to about 80 feet to give a unique twist on the classic “all-22” look.

Continue reading story here


September 6th

… Foe Pause … 

Pac-12 lines – Oregon a 50-point favorite: Washington only 45

From 5Dimes:

— Arizona – a 4.0-point underdog at Houston — 10:00 a.m., MT, ABC or ESPN2

— UCLA – a 30.0-point underdog at #6 Oklahoma — 11:00 a.m., MT, Fox

— No. 23 Oregon – a 50.0-point favorite over Portland State – 12:00 p.m., MT, Pac-12 Networks

— Colorado – a 3.5-point underdog at Nebraska (down from 5.0) — 1:30 p.m., MT, ABC

— No. 9 Washington – a 45.0-point favorite over North Dakota – 3:00 p.m., MT, Pac-12 Networks

— Utah – a 10.0-point favorite at Northern Illinois – 5:30 p.m., MT, ESPNNews

— Oregon State – a 12.5-point favorite over Southern Utah – 6:00 p.m., MT, Pac-12 Networks

— No. 17 USC – a 6.0-point underdog at No. 10 Stanford – 6:30 p.m., MT, Fox

— California – a 3.0-point underdog at BYU – 8:15 p.m., MT, ESPN2/ESPNU

— Arizona State – a 6.0-point underdog v. No. 15 Michigan State – 8:45 p.m., MT, ESPN

— Washington State – a 34.0-point favorite over San Jose State – 9:00 p.m., MT, Pac-12 Networks

and … Colorado State – a 14.0-point underdog v. Arkansas – 5:30 p.m., MT, CBS Sports Network

Colorado No. 6 in Jon Wilner’s Pac-12 Power Rankings

From the San Jose Mercury News … The Pac-12 lost the marquee non-conference matchup on its Week One schedule and lost at home to Cincinnati and BYU. But compare the results to Power Five peers, and the conference actually fared reasonably well.

The following Power Five Power Ratings (PFPR) — a new feature on the Hotline — originally appeared in the Monday newsletter (sign-up here) but will, in future weeks, be published as a stand-alone item.

All is not necessarily as the won/loss records indicate because of the disparities in schedules.

The ACC, for instance, had a better overall mark than the Pac-12, but half of the 10 wins were over FCS opponents.

… Now, to the first installment of the Pac-12 power ratings, which will be published each Monday through the regular season.

6. Colorado (1-0)
Result: Beat Colorado State 45-13
Next up: at Nebraska
Comment: Cornhuskers had to cancel their opener because of weather. Could CU have used the game tape for study? Sure. But that loss is more than offset by the fact that Scott Frost’s crew won’t have worked through opening-game jitters and glitches.

Read full story here


September 5th

… Foe Pause … 

Oregon State and Colorado State earn spots in ESPN’s Bottom Ten

From ESPN … With apologies to the Captain Jack Sparrow and Steve Harvey, here’s the Bottom 10:

6. Ore-gone State (0-1)

The Beavers traveled 2,500 miles to lose by 47 points at Ohio State. I look forward to Urban Meyer’s comments on the victory via an ill-timed tweet written by his attorneys.

10. Colora-duh State (0-2)

The Rams have been ramrodded two weeks in a row, one of only two 0-2 teams in the nation, and their next two games are against SEC opponents, Arkansas and Florida. Suddenly, that Oct. 6 trip to San No-se State is feeling kind of huge. Like, “Pillow Fight of the Century/hosting Bottom 10 GameDay” huge.

Continue reading story here

… And in CBS’s Bottom 25 (along with UCLA) … 

From CBS Sports … A new college football season means one thing and one thing only: the return of The Bottom 25.

It was a long offseason, but your favorite set of rankings have returned. As is usually the case, we have some surprise entrants in the opening week of the season. Teams we may not get a chance to see here again, so we must enjoy it while we can.

For those of you new to the Bottom 25, the process is rather simple. It’s just a ranking for the worst teams in the country. What’s different about it compared to your standard top 25 poll is that my opinion plays no factor in the rankings. Instead, I use a mathematical formula of my own creation to rank every single FBS team in the country, and each season starts with a clean slate. That means defending national champion Alabama and defending 2017 Bottom 25 champion UTEP begin the season as equals with only their on-field performance separating them during the season.

From the Pac-12 (plus CSU!) … 

Read full list here

Washington preseason All-American left tackle may be lost for the season

From the Seattle Times … Washington senior left tackle Trey Adams is expected to miss significant time — perhaps the entire 2018 season — with a back injury that kept him out of the Huskies’ season-opening loss to Auburn on Saturday.

If he does miss the majority of the season, Adams would consider returning to UW for a fifth year of eligibility, a source told The Seattle Times.

A preseason All-American, the 6-foot-8, 316-pound Adams missed the second half of the 2017 season after suffering a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee. He had been on track to return from the knee surgery last month until the back injury surfaced early last week.

He did not travel with the team to Atlanta.

After the game on Saturday, UW coach Chris Petersen did not sound optimistic about Adams’ long-term prognosis.

“We’re getting the doctors to look at him and figure it out. It could be (long-term), might not be. I don’t know,” Petersen said. “He practiced his tail off (last) Monday and was rocking and rolling, and then he wasn’t.”

Continue reading story here


September 4th

… Foe Pause …

Bowl projections: More love for Colorado 

Both ESPN and CBS Sports have the 1-0 going bowling this season (which was not always the case this off-season):

From ESPN … Week 1 is history, so here are the first adjustments to our experts’ bowl projections for this season:

From the Pac-12:

Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual (Pac-12 No. 1)

Bonagura: Wisconsin vs. Stanford
Sherman: Ohio State vs. Washington

PlayStation Fiesta Bowl (New Year’s Six)

Bonagura: Boise State vs. Washington
Sherman: Boise State vs. Stanford

Valero Alamo Bowl (Pac-12 No. 2)

Bonagura: USC vs. West Virginia
Sherman: Oklahoma State vs. Utah

San Diego County Credit Union Holiday Bowl (Pac-12 No. 3)

Bonagura: Oregon vs. Penn State
Sherman: Michigan State vs. USC

San Francisco Bowl (Pac-12 No. 4)

Bonagura: Utah vs. Michigan
Sherman: Iowa vs. California

Hyundai Sun Bowl (Pac-12 No. 5)

Bonagura: Arizona State vs. Georgia Tech
Sherman: Oregon vs. Florida State

Mitsubishi Motors Las Vegas Bowl (Pac-12 No. 6)

Bonagura: California vs. Fresno State
Sherman: Colorado vs. Fresno State

Cheez-It Bowl (Pac-12 No. 7)

Bonagura: Colorado vs. Baylor
Sherman: Texas vs. Washington State

From CBS Sports … Week 1 is over and with that comes the annual reminder not to overreact to what you see in the first week of the season.  Usually, you still have more questions than you have answers. That is especially true when there are so few competitive games, at least on paper.

From the Pac-12 … 

Jan. 1Rose
Pasadena, Calif.
5 p.m.
Big Ten vs. Pac-12Wisconsin vs. Washington
Jan. 1Fiesta
Glendale, Ariz.
1 p.m.
At-large vs. At-largeStanford vs. Boise State
Alamo BowlDec. 28San Antonio, Tex.Big 12 vs. Pac-12Texas vs. Utah
Holiday BowlDec. 31San Diego, Calif.Big Ten vs. Pac-12Iowa vs. USC
San Francisco BowlDec. 31Santa Clara, Calif.Big Ten vs. Pac-12Northwestern vs. Oregon
Sun BowlDec. 31El Paso, Tex.ACC vs. Pac-12Florida State vs. Arizona
Las Vegas BowlDec. 15Las Vegas, Nev.Mountain West vs. Pac-12Fresno State vs. Colorado
Cheez-It BowlDec. 26Tempe, Ariz.Big 12 vs. Pac-12Wyoming+ vs. California
Armed Forces BowlDec. 22Fort Worth, Tex.American vs. Big 12Army+ vs. Wash. State+

+ Washington State picking up a bowl bid as a replacement for a Big 12 team …

Washington drops to No. 9 in latest Associated Press poll

From CBS Sports

1. Alabama
2. Clemson
3. Georgia
4. Ohio State
5. Wisconsin
6. Oklahoma
7. Auburn
8. Notre Dame
9. Washington  — down three spots
10. Stanford — up three spots
11. LSU
12. Virginia Tech
13. Penn State
14. West Virginia
15. Michigan State
16. TCU
17. USC — down two spots
18. Mississippi State
19. UCF
20. Boise State
21. Michigan
22. Miami (FL)
23. Oregon — up one spot
24. South Carolina
25. Florida

Others Receiving Votes: Utah (1-0) 71; Oklahoma State (1-0) 62; Boston College (1-0) 31; Texas A&M (1-0) 29; Northwestern (1-0) 28; Maryland (1-0) 12; Ole Miss (1-0) 11; North Carolina State (1-0) 9; Florida State (0-1) 8; Washington State (1-0) 6; Houston (1-0) 6; Memphis (1-0) 6; Iowa State (0-0) 4; Kansas State (1-0) 3; Iowa (1-0) 3; BYU (1-0) 3; Hawaii (2-0) 3; Arkansas State (1-0) 1; Fresno State (1-0) 1

Jon Wilner Week One Pac-12 Report: CU “rising”

From the San Jose Mercury News … Narratives that build for eight months can be blasted away in the time it takes, say, N’Keal Harry to dash 58 yards. Yet Week One creates misdirection and false leads of its own, with the truth typically settling between the extremes.

For now, we can only react … or overreact … to the evidence at hand.

Welcome to a special edition of the Hotline stock report, designed to complement the themes covered in ‘Saturday Night Five‘ and, in tandem, provide a comprehensive overview of key weekend developments.

Rising: Colorado.

Goodness, the Buffs looked fast against Colorado State. Perhaps they’re as swift as they appeared, perhaps it was an illusion created by an inferior opponent. (We’ll get a better sense in Week Two against Nebraska.)

We were impressed with the use of Laviska Shenault as a receiver (primarily) and in the backfield, and with the force of nature that is sophomore linebacker Nate Landman.

Above all, quarterback Steven Montez seemed confident, relaxed and in command of his offense — the Montez we saw as a spot-use freshman, not the erratic sophomore starter.

From the looks of it, CU will be a difficult out at home (best of luck to UCLA, ASU, Utah and Washington State) and  capable of swiping one or two on the road.

Continue reading story here


September 3rd

… Foe Pause … 

Nebraska Depth Chart

The Nebraska depth chart for the Cornhusker opener against Colorado can be found here.

Notes … The interior of the offensive line are all seniors, though both tackles are sophomores … The average size of the offensive line: 6’5″, 322-pounds … A total of ten senior starters are listed (CU started eight seniors against Colorado State) … At running back, the leading returning rusher (Devine Ozigbo, 129 attempts for 493 yards, three touchdowns) is listed as “or” with junior college transfer Greg Bell … Nebraska’s two wide outs – J.D. Spielman and Stanley Morgan – are listed on Athlon’s first-team All-Big Ten team (the only Huskers to make the first teams – or second teams, for that matter) …

“Young offensive line may mean tough times for Arizona Wildcat Khalil Tate”

From … The Aug. 13 issue of Sports Illustrated that arrived in my mailbox had not Khalil Tate on the cover, but a faux cover of two guys dressed in football uniforms with the names “Jibber” and “Jabber” on their jerseys.

Once you removed Jibber and Jabber and the cleverly designed 8×11 life insurance advertisement, Tate came into full view.

“Big and Bad,” it said. “He’s the nation’s best QB.”

Today, given Arizona’s belly flop, a 28-23, sky-is-falling opening-night loss to BYU, Sports Illustrated and those positioning Tate into the Heisman Trophy race fit the Jibber-Jabber category.

It was just summertime talk. September changes everything.

In a baffling 3 hours and 34 minutes, Tate and Arizona were scrubbed from the college football landscape. Old news. There were new discoveries. Hey, how about LSU?

I can’t recall my email inbox as full and as condemning as it was over the weekend. One former UA football standout wrote that Arizona’s offensive game plan as designed by Kevin Sumlin and offensive coordinator Noel Mazzone reminded him of the way the 1973 San Diego Chargers used Johnny Unitas.

For the record, Unitas, at 40, holding on for a final season, did not carry the ball in the final five games of his Hall of Fame career.

Tate is 19. He carried eight times against BYU. It took me back to the day Lauri Markkanen didn’t attempt a shot in the final 14:19 of Arizona’s Sweet 16 loss to Xavier.

Continue reading story here

“Status of Wilton Speight for UCLA’s game at Oklahoma remains up in the air”

From the Los Angeles Times … Wilton Speight gripped a football in his right hand Monday morning and made an underhanded flip to Dorian Thompson-Robinson.

The motion simulated a snap but was also a metaphor for the way things unfolded during UCLA’s season-opening loss to Cincinnati on Saturday, when Speight handed the quarterback duties to Thompson-Robinson in the second quarter after suffering a back injury.

Two days later, Speight’s participation during the 20-minute portion of practice that was open to reporters was limited to tossing his teammates balls and offering encouragement.

UCLA coach Chip Kelly said Speight’s injury was “nothing serious” but remained unsure of his status for the Bruins’ game at No. 7 Oklahoma on Saturday. Kelly doesn’t have a rule that players must practice before playing but noted the obvious benefits of their participation.

“I don’t think anybody’s going to be successful if they don’t have a week of practice and understand the game plan,” Kelly said. “If that was the case, then no one should practice.”

Thompson-Robinson replaced Speight against the Bearcats and would be the presumed starter against the Sooners if Speight is unable to play. Kelly said he was pleased with Thompson-Robinson’s demeanor playing in his first college game as a true freshman.

“Nothing was too big for him,” Kelly said. “When you talk to him after a series, he knew why [something happened], what the breakdown was or what the issue was on that play. He has a really good understanding of what we’re doing.”

Thompson-Robinson completed 15 of 25 passes for 117 yards but was sacked four times, lost a fumble and misfired on a fourth-down pass in the game’s final minutes. He was his own harshest critic after the game.

“It needs work, definitely,” Thompson-Robinson said of his performance.

Continue reading story here


September 2nd

.. Foe Pause …

Colorado a four-point underdog to Nebraska 

From CBS Sports … Week 1 of the college football season wraps up Labor Day night, but it’s never too early to start looking ahead to Week 2. Clemson will travel to Texas A&M, Georgia will cross the border to South Carolina and the Scott Frost era will finally (hopefully) get cranked up against Colorado.

You don’t have to wait to see what the boys in the desert think of these, and other, important matchups. released Week 2 odds Sunday afternoon. Let’s check them out and find out where money can be made …

Colorado at Nebraska (-4): Weather forced Scott Frost’s debut at Nebraska to be pushed back a week, and the new opener vs. Colorado is a much bigger test than Akron would have been in Week 1. The Buffaloes are fresh off a thrashing of Colorado State on Friday night, and the Cornhuskers will start true freshman quarterback Adrian Martinez — the only scholarship signal-caller on the roster. Bet at your own risk.

“Arizona’s ‘New Era’ gets off to rocky start with 28-23 loss to BYU” 

Related … BYU spoils Sumlin’s debut with 28-23 win over Arizona” … from ESPN

From the Arizona Daily Star … New Era. Familiar problems.

The Arizona Wildcats began the Kevin Sumlin regime slowly. They appeared to find their form. Then it all came crashing down.

A nightmarish third quarter turned a slim lead into a double-digit deficit. Arizona couldn’t overcome it and fell to BYU 28-23 in front of an announced crowd of 51,002 Saturday night at Arizona Stadium.

The Wildcats had won 17 straight home openers. They’ve lost only two season openers in the past 11 years – both to BYU.

The road opener won’t be easy either: Houston is 1-0 after defeating Rice 45-27.

“We’ve gotta learn from this,” Sumlin said. “All is not lost. We’ve got a lot more football to play.”

Continue reading story here

“Among UCLA faithful, Chip Kelly’s debut had to hurt” 

Related … “Cincinnati spoils Chip Kelly’s UCLA debut with 26-17 win” … from ESPN 

From the Los Angeles Times … The Chip Kelly Era marched into the Rose Bowl on Saturday and was heartily welcomed by ghosts of Bruins past.

It looked like the Jim Mora Era, only worse.

It looked like the Rick Neuheisel Era, only duller.

It looked like the Karl Dorrell Era only, well, honestly, it was pretty much exactly like that.

It was the same old UCLA, only this new era is costing the university $23.3 million, so maybe just a little more was expected in a 26-17 loss to two-touchdown-underdog Cincinnati?

There was a blown 10-point lead. There was a fumble that led to Cincinnati’s go-ahead safety. There was a goal-line penalty that led to the Bearcats’ clinching touchdown.

Continue reading story here


September 1st

… Foe Pause … 

No. 9 Auburn scores late to defeat No. 6 Washington, 21-16

Related … “Five impressions from the UW Huskies’ season-opening loss to No. 9 Auburn” … from the Seattle Times

From ESPN … Jatarvious Whitlow ran 10 yards for a touchdown with 6:15 remaining and the Auburn defense came through at the end, leading the No. 9 Tigers a 21-16 victory over No. 6 Washington that provided a big boost to their resume in the very first game of the season Saturday.

Trailing 16-15 after missing a two-point conversion on their opening drive of the game, Auburn drove 76 yards in 10 plays for the winning score. Jarrett Stidhambkept the drive going early with a 12-yard pass to Chandler Cox on third-and-9.

Then, facing third-and-7 deep in Washington territory, Auburn handed off inside to Whitlow, who knocked over a Washington defender as he smashed into the end zone.

Washington drove to the Auburn 37 with plenty of time to pull off the comeback, but Myles Gaskin was thrown for a 3-yard loss and Jake Browningwas stymied by a fierce pass rush on back-to-back plays to preserve the Tigers’ victory.

Both teams squandered scoring chances.

Continue reading story here

No. 15 USC struggles early, pulls away late from UNLV

From ESPN … JT Daniels, the second freshman to start at quarterback in a season opener for Southern California, threw for 282 yards with a 43-yard touchdown pass to Amon-Ra St. Brown to lead the No. 15 Trojans to a 43-21 victory over UNLV on Saturday.

Daniels was 22 of 35 passing for the Trojans (1-0), with fellow freshman St. Brown making seven receptions for 98 yards. The former Mater Dei High School teammates connected for their first college touchdown on the first play of the fourth quarter, with St. Brown getting a step behind cornerback Jericho Flowers on a post route to give USC a two-possession lead over the Rebels (0-1).

Aca’Cedric Ware rushed for 100 yards and a touchdown, and Vavae Malepeai scored the first of two touchdowns on a 2-yard run late in the second quarter that gave USC a lead it would not relinquish.

Chase McGrath, another Mater Dei product, kicked five field goals to tie a school record, and outside linebacker Porter Gustin had 1 1/2 sacks and recovered a fumble after undergoing knee surgery on Aug. 8.

UNLV used early big plays to hang with the defending Pac-12 champions for three quarters. Lexington Thomas gained 71 of his 138 yards rushing on a touchdown run after faking a reverse to put UNLV ahead 7-6 late in the first quarter.

Armani Rogers threw a 31-yard touchdown pass to Kendal Keys to go up 14-9 after UNLV extended the drive with a 36-yard run by Evan Austrie on a fake punt.

Rogers was 12 of 27 for 97 yards and two touchdown passes, adding 82 yards rushing despite being sacked five times.

Oregon State falls to Ohio State, 77-31

From ESPN … With coach Urban Meyer serving a suspension, new starting quarterback Dwayne Haskins Jr. threw for a record five touchdowns as No. 5 Ohio State routed Oregon State 77-31 in the opener for both teams Saturday.

After a preseason fraught with drama, the Buckeyes shook off Meyer’s first absence from the Ohio State sideline in six years, scoring on five of its first six possessions and overcoming some defensive sloppiness.

Haskins, who took the keys from four-year starter J.T. Barrett, was 22 for 30 for 313 yards. The five touchdowns and yards gained are records for a first-time Ohio State starter. Mike Weber rushed 20 times for 186 yards and three touchdowns for the Buckeyes.

Oregon State quarterback Conor Blount found some holes in the Ohio State defense, throwing for 169 yards and two touchdowns, but he also was sacked five times in the first half, twice by All-American defensive end Nick Bosa. Running back Artavis Pierce ran for two long touchdowns in the second half.

“There’s lots of things to learn from, and be encouraged by,” Oregon State coach Jonathan Smith said. “We were in position to make some plays, we didn’t tackle all that well.”

No. 13 Stanford relies on defense to defeat San Diego State, 31-10

From ESPN …  Stanford knows defenses are going to do whatever it takes to slow down Bryce Love after his record-setting 2017 season.

Being able to take advantage of that with the deep passing game will be key to the Cardinal’s success this year.

JJ Arcega-Whiteside did just that, getting loose for three long TD catches from K.J. Costello to overcome a slow night by Love and No. 13 Stanford opened the season with a 31-10 victory over San Diego State on Friday.

“That’s what their game plan was, to load up the box and play one-on-ones on the outside,” Arcega-Whiteside said. “That’s what you want and all you can ask for. Now teams know they can’t just load up the box and play one-on-one on the outside.”

Love was held to 29 yards on 18 carries as the Aztecs (0-1) focused their defense on stopping the man who led all Power 5 backs with 2,118 yards rushing last season on the way to a Heisman Trophy runner-up finish.

After a slow start, the Cardinal (1-0) made San Diego State pay for that decision. Costello connected with Arcega-Whiteside on a 38-yard score in the second quarter and then on plays from 19 and 80 yards in the third quarter as the Aztecs defensive backs struggled to contend with Stanford’s big receiver. Arcega-Whiteside finished with six catches for 226 yards.

“It’s no secret Bryce is the best running back in the country,” Costello said. “We all believe it. There were times I came to the line and there were 11 guys coming downhill to light him up. Being able to counter that is what you have to do to be a good offense.”

Costello added a 19-yard TD pass to Colby Parkinson in the fourth quarter to break open what had been a close game for more than a half. Costello finished 21 for 31 for 332 yards and four TDs.

Continue reading story here

7 Replies to “Pac-12 Notes – Nebraska”

  1. “Better Dead than Red!” I can’t wait to see our Buffaloes go into Lincoln and “keep smacking them in the mouth until they shut up”. GBR: Golden Buffaloes Romp. Where are you Husker Trolls? We’re waiting……..

  2. “Yet Week One creates misdirection and false leads of its own,…”Becoming even less of a wilner fan.
    Praise for the Buffs certainly coming after the first game but it will be interesting to see if he ever owns up to “modest expectations from the receivers” and downplaying Montez in his all knowing preseason evaluations.

    1. Hard to hate Wilner though, considering he’s one of the only people that actually publishes stuff on the PAC-12 almost exclusively. If nothing else, I like him just for that (screw you ESPN)

      I do think it’s strange how many people thought CU’s receiving corps would be a weak point this year when all of them had at least *some* big-game experience and were all highly recruited guys.

  3. Washington actually looks vulnerable on the lines. Their D line was stonewalled most of the time. The O line wasnt much better. Springing the great Gaskin was few and far between. Maybe it was Auburn’s O line instead but Auburn didnt do much with it either.

  4. Can’t beleieve I’m here in 2018 for Nebraska week!!! Been too long!!! Too bad we couldn’t see the red belly’s play this Saturday but I’m feeling good about this game!! Let’s go get that national respect!!!

    1. Although I think CU puts a beat down on the cornhuskers, I don’t expect more than a few cricket chirps from the national media. The narrative will be “well they beat two bad teams” I think.

      But so what? This team should be hitting its stride as UCLA comes to town, on national tv. Again, I still don’t think that beating UCLA and sitting at 4-0 will garner much respect. But my money is on them getting their due as the season progresses.

      Granted, it is early, and they have only beaten a bad CSU team, but it appears they may have a smattering of future nfl dudes on both sides of the ball. It has been a while since we could say that. That bodes well for the future, and the future is now.

      Go Buffs.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *