In a game with significant Pac-12 meaning, the Washington Football team (8-1, 5-1) clashes with Stanford (6-3, 5-2) in a battle for the North division.
It was always going to come to this. The Washington Football team season hinges upon how well the team performs against the Stanford Cardinals. Its tough to place the success of the 2017 Washington football season in one game, but there it is.
Win and rise higher in national rankings and prestige. Lose and diminish to the afterthought teams.
The reason this game is so very important to the program lies in two facts. One, the Washington Football team was shocked by the loss at the hands of the Arizona State Sun Devils. That means the team cannot afford to lose any more games if they hope to be invited to the NCAA Playoffs this year. But that itself brings a silver lining. This team has no margin for error. There is no mulligan in the rest of this season, and so, the tough going should bring out Washington’s best.
Apple Cup bigger than ever.
The other bit of importance lies in Pullman, Washington. The Washington Huskies are 5-1 in Pac-12 conference play. But both Stanford and Washington State are 5-2 in the conference. While the Washington Huskies face both, they only gain the advantage if they defeat both. That means that to keep pace with the Cougars, Washington must win. Lose this one, and then lose in the Apple Cup, and suddenly the NCAA potential fades into a minor bowl bid.
Stanford is fighting for their own relevance. Having lost to both USC and Washington State, the Cardinals would love to beat Washington to prove they too belong in the Pac-12 championship conversation.
When Stanford has the ball
The Stanford Cardinals have elected to go with sophomore quarterback K.J. Costello to face Washington. Similar to the ineffective passing game of Oregon’s Braxton Burmeister, the presence of Costello behind center does give the Stanford offense limits. In short, they will live and die by the running game – fueled by the power of running back Bryce Love. You can expect to see Love get fed the ball 20 or more times in this game.
If Costello drops back to pass, he will undoubtedly look for junior wide receiver J.J. Arcega-Whiteside. In each game he’s played, he has pulled in no less than three receptions per game. Beyond those two, the Cardinals have no true offensive standout. And Costello’s ability to stand tall in the pocket and deliver a strike deep downfield is very suspect.
Stanford will look to move the chains with a steady dose of rushes interspersed with an occasional high percentage pass.
When Washington has the ball
The Washington Huskies are back on the road for the first time since the Arizona State loss. Will the team continue to rely upon the running game? Well, the Stanford defense is susceptible to the running game. That is enough of an answer to lean that direction.
But Stanford is vulnerable to a passing offense too. With the Huskies proving their strength in the ground game, I would not be surprised to see the offense go better than half of the plays in the air.
Sophomore wide receiver Aaron Fuller showed up big in the Oregon game, and the coaches would love to see him do just as well in this key Pac-12 contest. Paired with Dante Pettis, he would rejuvenate the passing attack which had lost its luster in the last road trip.
Keys to victory for Stanford
Defensively, the Stanford Football team needs to stop the talented Washington running game. But that is easier said than done, particularly if the Washington offense plans accordingly. Still, the key for Stanford is to make this a low scoring game. Frustrate the Washington offense by causing turnovers. Get a quick score or two. And then, hang onto that lead for the rest of the game.
Keys to victory for Washington
Defensively, the Washington Football team needs to stop Stanford star Bryce Love. They have the talent to do so, as they had just performed outstanding against the strong running attack of the Oregon Ducks just a week ago.
Offensively, the Huskies need production from both Fuller and Ahmed in this one. More skilled players prevents Stanford from keying on Gaskin and Pettis.
The Washington Huskies have a tough opponent this week. Still, the results of the Oregon contest a week ago is very encouraging. I originally saw this week’s game as the first loss for Washington. But with one loss already, I cannot see this as a second loss.
I see Bryce Love getting both a score and 100 yards rushing in this one.
But I see Washington getting the W
Washington – Stanford game time, details:
Date: Friday,November 10, 2017
Time: 7:00 p.m. PT
Location: Stanford Stadium – Stanford, California
What TV channel is Washington – Stanford game on?
The Washington vs. Stanford game is televised via Fox Sports 1.
How can I watch Washington – Stanford online?
The Washington vs. Stanford game will stream on Fox Sports Go by cable or satellite subscription, or via the Fox Sports Go app on your tablet, iphone, Android, or other mobile device.
Will the Washington – Stanford game be broadcast via the radio?
The Washington vs. Stanford will make the radio on either 1000 KOMO-AM or 97.7 KOMO-FM in the Seattle area, or on the Sirius Satellite Radio channel 98.
Coaches and Players
Weather – Stanford, California
At kickoff (projected): Temp –57 F, Rain – 0%, Humidity – 85%, Wind – WNW 1 mph