Did anyone see that coming? No. 10 Stanford's offense passed and ran at will against No. 13 Arizona's vaunted defense, while the Cardinal defense made Wildcats quarterback Nick Foles' return to the lineup a miserable one in a convincing 42-17 win. Stanford figures to move up in the BCS Rankings after Utah, Alabama, Oklahoma, and Missouri all lost, and the Cardinal made a strong case to a wide television audience that it is the most impressive one-loss team in the nation.
In shredding a defense that was allowing 14 points per game, the Cardinal set up its running game with the pass. Andrew Luck was 23-for-32 for 293 yards and two touchdowns, and got a little love from ESPN sideline reporter Erin Andrews. Stanford's opening drive featured five passes and one run, and culminated with a 45-yard touchdown reception by Chris Owusu. The junior receiver had career highs of 9 receptions for 165 yards. The Cardinal offense found success on the ground, too, rushing for 217 yards against a defense that was allowing 88 per game.
Stepfan Taylor's streak of five consecutive 100-yard games came to an end, but he rushed for four touchdowns. Taylor's final touchdown capped an impressive drive late in the fourth quarter that burned more than 5 minutes off the clock. The drive covered 83 yards on 11 plays, all of them runs. Anthony Wilkerson had 81 yards rushing for Stanford.
I'll have more tomorrow on the win and the Cardinal's impressive defensive effort against the Wildcats, who moved the ball when they went to the hurry-up offense, but struggled to protect Foles for most of the game.