Stanford kicks off soccer season with promising victory

A 37-24 win over Hawaii (0-2, 0-0 Mountain West) has Stanford followers excited concerning the soccer crew (1-0, 0-0 Pac-12) for the remainder of the yr. Whereas it’s too early to say something conclusive concerning the Cardinal’s season prospects, the primary recreation did reveal some issues concerning the identification and make-up of the crew.

Ben Yurosek shall be Ashton Daniels’s primary goal:

Coming into this season, senior Ben Yurosek was already considered among the finest tight ends nationally. The six-foot-four participant caught 43 receptions for 658 yards in 2021 and adopted that up with 49 receptions for 445 yards in 2022. But it looks like Yurosek is able to outpace his earlier manufacturing. 

Within the first half, he amassed seven receptions for 113 yards and completed the sport with 9 receptions for a career-high 138 yards. Regardless of these gaudy statistics, it’s clear that Yurosek wasn’t simply the beneficiary of wide-open home windows. The 242-pound tight finish’s means to contort his physique and modify to the soccer stood out a number of occasions in the course of the recreation. In tandem with Stanford head coach Troy Taylor’s scheme, Yurosek may very well be a authentic candidate for the Mackey Award this season.

Quarterback run will characteristic prominently within the offense:

Previous to the sport, Taylor had stated that the quarterback run can be featured prominently within the offense this season. It appears Taylor is a person of his phrase, as sophomore quarterback Ashton Daniels ran the ball 11 occasions for 42 yards. Many of those have been additionally designed runs, the place the quarterback’s first or second possibility was to hold the ball. 

This provides a dimension to Stanford’s offense that it didn’t have in earlier years, and is one other characteristic that opposing defenses should account for. Taylor’s unfold offense goals to stretch defenses horizontally and vertically. The quarterback run is only one solution to create horizontal strain whereas additionally eliminating defenders from a play. Whereas at sure occasions, Taylor might maintain again on these performs resulting from concern of harm, anticipate quarterback runs to be a staple of Stanford’s offense going ahead this yr.

The line of defense is the perfect unit on protection:

Though the secondary additionally performed fantastically, the Stanford line of defense stood out from the leap. It was obvious from the primary snap that Hawaii’s offensive line merely couldn’t fend off the Cardinal line of defense. Stanford’s defensive entrance compelled Rainbow Warriors quarterback Brayden Schafer out of the pocket typically, whereas additionally sacking and disrupting the quarterback’s throwing lanes quite a few occasions. 

Sophomore defensive finish David Bailey had a powerful efficiency, tallying three sacks and 4 tackles for loss. Bailey seems to be to be Stanford’s finest participant on protection and is molding right into a promising NFL prospect.

If the line of defense can proceed to play at a excessive degree in opposition to convention opponents, it’ll doubtlessly enable Stanford to drag off some upsets that only a few folks foresaw in the course of the preseason.

Subsequent, Stanford will tackle USC (1-0, 0-0 Pac-12) on Saturday, Sept. 9 — the final time the colleges will play one another within the Pac-12. Kickoff is ready to start at 7:30 p.m. PT.