Where: Autzen Stadium in Eugene, Oregon
When: Saturday, September 22nd at 5 p.m. — Gates open at 3:30 p.m. — Tailgate begins at 11 a.m.
*TV:* ABC Play-by-Play: Chris Fowler Analyst: Kirk Herbstreit Sideline Reporter: Maria Taylor *Radio:* Oregon IMG Sports Network Play-by-Play: Jerry Allen Analyst: Mike Jorgensen Sideline Reporter: Joey McMurry Pre-Game Show: Terry Jonz
Betting Line: Stanford (-2.5) — Over/Under = 56.5
History: 48-32-1 Stanford. Oregon and Stanford have split the series 4-4 since the turn of the decade but it’s the Cardinal who’ve won the past two games in dominating fashion. Last year’s 49-7 loss was Oregon’s worst defeat in the series after Bryce Love ran for 147 yards and two scores and JJ Arcega-Whiteside had 112 receiving yards and two scores.
Oregon Storyline: It’s discovery time for Oregon. The Ducks have cruised through their nonconference schedule, outscoring opponents 155-60. But now the Ducks will be tested by one of the best teams in America. Not only will this game have Pac-12 implications, it has college football playoff ones as well. Oregon wants to change its identity from a speed offense to a power one, so the nation will see if head coach Mario Cristobal has accomplished that. Do the Ducks stack up physically with the Cardinal? Can Oregon’s offense be unleashed against the best scoring defense in the country? So many story lines that will be answered Saturday night
Stanford Storyline: Stanford scored what looked like a marquee victory two weeks ago against USC. But the Trojans got dismantled against Texas last week, casting doubt on the Cardinal. This is the week Stanford gets to prove if they’re a contender or a pretender. Questions have arisen about the Cardinal physicality, particularly in the run defense and offensive line. Those groups will be tested by the Ducks. A Cardinal victory makes them true national title contenders while a loss puts them in the backseat of the Pac-12 north division.
Oregon Players to Watch: Junior QB Justin Herbert, Senior S Ugochukwu Amadi, Senior RB Tony Brooks-James, Sophomore NT Jordon Scott
Stanford Players to Watch: Senior RB Bryce Love, Senior WR JJ Arcega-Whiteside, Senior CB Alijah Holder, Senior LB Joey Alfieri
Matchup to Watch:Oregon Run Defense vs. Stanford Run Offense
Oregon Depth Chart:Click Here
Stanford Depth Chart:Click Here
Weather Forecast: 67 degrees and mostly cloudy at kickoff. 5-percent chance of rain with 54-percent humidity. Winds expected at 9 mph.
Prediction: I believe the Ducks are real. I think Herbert — who’s in search of his first marquee victory — shows maturity and poise in the pocket and picks apart the Stanford defense by controlling the game. Wide receiver Dillon Mitchell finally makes himself heard on the year. The Ducks don’t stop Love or Arcega-Whiteside, but they contain both players, leaving the Cardinal offense stuck. Oregon wins the game in the fourth quarter when its offensive line controls the trenches and the Ducks grind out long drives to seal the victory
Oregon 34 — Stanford 23