Stanford Cannot Overlook San Jose State This Week

The 2012 football season was a huge success for the Stanford Cardinal and this season could be even better.

Stanford won the Pac-12 for the first time since 1999. The Cardinal also was victorious in the Rose Bowl for the first time since 1971. However, to reach those points the Cardinal had a tough early season game against the San Jose State Spartans.

Last season the Spartans enjoyed a successful season much like their Bay Area opponents, as they were 11-2, won a bowl game and were ranked at the end of the season in the Top 25.

In their head-to-head matchup last season, the Spartans were tied with Stanford 17-17 late in the game and held the Cardinal to only a field goal in the second half. That field goal, set up by a Spartans turnover ended up being the point difference in the game.

Stanford will be much the same as it was last year when they faced SJSU. The strong defense returns with much more experience and talent, including Ed Reynolds, an All-American at safety and Shayne Shov their leader at linebacker. Last season the defense had 15 interceptions, including one against the Spartans.

On offense, Stanford will start Kevin Hogan at quarterback who replaced Josh Nunes during the midpoint of the season.

The balance between the offense’s potential and the defense’s dominance has the Cardinal as the preseason favorite to challenge for a second straight Pac-12 title and a national championship.

Nevertheless, the SJSU team will be standing squaring in front of the Cardinal on Saturday trying to end the national title hopes of the Cardinal. David Fales, the Spartan quarterback, will not face a better defense the entire season, but is as talented a quarterback as Stanford will face as well.

San Jose State with Fales at the helm, wore down a tough Sacramento State team last week, but will be facing the nation’s No. 5 team this weekend.

Fales will likely star one day in the NFL. The senior completed more than 72% of his passes last season for just fewer than 4,200 yards. He tossed 33 touchdowns and only 9 interceptions. The Spartans are coached by Ron Caragher, who is in his second season at the helm.

The Cardinal are favored in this matchup on Saturday by 26 points with an over under point total of 48 ½. Of course, the Cardinal is the much more talented team, but must stay focused and not look ahead to tougher opponents are they will be blindsided by the talented Fales and see their national title hopes lost.

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