Written By: Tyler Pastorius
College football is upon us and with that brings the Pac-12 Media Day. After a mediocre 9-5 season and losing in the Alamo Bowl against Texas Christian University, Stanford is looking to bounce back this year. With a 2017 Heisman runner-up in running back Bryce Love, a developing quarterback in junior K.J Costello and a head coach entering his eight year in David Shaw, the Cardinals are looking to prove something this year.
On Pac-12 Media Day, the media was expecting Love to show up as one of the player representatives, however, Coach Shaw stated, “this year’s about him getting bigger, stronger, being more versatile, different things, adding to his game, we’re not going to do the Bryce Love stat watch.” Love had a great 2017 campaign as he scored 19 touchdowns and rushed for 2,118 yards. The senior running back is looking to cap off his collegiate career with a great season, while also being one of the top NFL Draft prospects at his position.
Coach Shaw set the tone early this offseason to his team and the media stating, “our focus is to have the best team that we can have, the most well rounded team we can have, the most well balanced offense that we can have, as well as having one of the most explosive running backs (Bryce Love) in the history of college football.”
By saying this, Coach Shaw is trying to make sure the rest of the team doesn’t listen to the outside noise but rather, just focus on themselves. If they do that, there is no reason to not think that they will do well this season.
Looking forward to the season and the depth chart so far, Stanford has some nice skill players but there are some holes in the team. Coach Shaw spoke about it during Media Day stating, “we have a lot of room to grow also. We’re still looking for a starter at left guard. We still have some health issues in our fullback position, and other guys on the defensive line. So we have some other spots that’s we’re still looking for guys. We have some guys that are poised for big years.”
With six Stanford players going into the NFL from the 2017 team and having a team that was middle of the pack all year, Coach Shaw is hoping to see some better production out of his team.
Last season, only the Washington Huskies and the USC Trojans were the only nationally ranked teams from the Pac-12 so Stanford can expect some tough competition from the two schools. Last season, the Huskies finished 10-3 overall, 7-2 in the conference, which was the same as Stanford, and the Trojans finished with an 11-3 record, 8-1 in the conference. Not to mention, Stanford fell to the Trojans 31-28 in the Pac-12 Championship game so Stanford will be looking to avenge that loss. You can never predict the college football season, but it’s safe to say that as of right now, the Pac-12 is wide open but full of top contenders.
The season kicks off for the Stanford Cardinals on August 31st at home against San Diego State. Stanford starts their first three weeks at home and will face a difficult matchup in week two when the Trojans travel to Stanford.