If you saw it then you've gotta be convinced that hard-nosed football executed to perfection out performs flash and dash football anywhere, anytime. Last night's game between #3 Oregon and #6 Stanford simply drove home that age old theory.
The best way I could ever describe Stanford's domination is to say that the Cardinal offense put on a stunning display of defense by "Matriculatin' the ball down the field" in an unstoppable, ground£, time consuming style. It was the type of demonstration that ol'skool football coaches the likes of Lombardi, Halas and even Hank Stram who's "matriculating" Chefs offense won him their only super bowl to date, emphasized over and over.
In Super Bowl IV, American football coach Hank Stram wore a microphone on the sidelines as part of the television broadcast, and was caught telling his Kansas City Chiefs, "Just keep matriculatin' the ball down the field, boys," referring to the process of moving the football toward a score. Since that time, and especially after Stram's death in 2005, sports commentators have used the phrase "matriculate the ball down the field" in this sense. However, this use of the word is unrelated to any other known use of the word.
Oregon, with a Heisman candidate at quarterback, had their high-powered offense stopped time and again by a tenaciously bruising Stanford defense. And as I stated already, the Stanford offense was just as bruising with their big and crushing offensive linemen getting enough push for running back Tyler Gaffney to chew up yards, clock and first downs on his way to 157 yards on 45 carries.
As for the Stanford defensive stats of the game:
1. Time of Possession On Offense - 42:34sec
2. 2 Forced Turnovers
3. No Pts Allowed for 3qtrs
With all the hype about the Oregon Ducks quick attack offense, it was the Stanford Cardinal slow grinding offense and physical defense that made this game a laugh-er throughout. And gotta give the Cardinal special teams credit for ending any chance of a Ducks late game rally, thanks in part to two Jeff Trojan recoveries of onside kicks by the desperate Ducks.
Trojan Mannnnn, Trojan Mannnnnn,
Shout-out to Cardinal QB Kevin Hogan for implementing the offensive script to perfection and knowing when to use his legs to keep the chains moving. Good job coach Shaw for not deviating from the game plan.
If I'm a coach of a football team at any level, I take from this game the basics to putting together a winning team; overpowering offensive line, durable power backfield, mobile quarterback, smart physical defense and special teams, Everyone executing their duties! No superstars, just everyone punching the clock and carrying out their responsibilities for the team. That's football 101.
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