For much of the past decade, Stanford has been as much of a thorn in Oregon’s side as any program in the Pac-12. That, however, does not appear to be the case in 2019 so far.
The Cardinal notched an early field goal then proceeded to struggle on the offensive end against the No. 16 Ducks as the visitors from Eugene took a 14-3 lead into the halftime locker room on the Farm in a game that was far more lopsided than the score would suggest.
Oregon quarterback Justin Herbert was efficient as ever in the team’s first true road game of the season, throwing for 155 yards and two scores against just two incompletions all half. Those marks pushed him over 8,000 yards for his career and resulted in his 32nd straight game with touchdown pass. The offense managed only five (and really just four) drives through two quarters against a side playing keep away but could stand to run the ball a bit better in order to take a bit of pressure off their Heisman Trophy candidate behind center as C.J. Verdell mustered only 35 yards on eight carries.
Stanford, meanwhile, was actually decent on the ground (96 yards total) to win the time of possession battle by a solid margin. The problem was the normally reliable passing game for the Cardinal was nowhere to be found. K.J. Costello was under siege behind his makeshift offensive line, throwing for only 44 yards on seven completions and the team managed just over four yards per play at home.
The Ducks have a lot more on the line in this one as they look to stay tied with Cal atop the Pac-12 North standings but we’ve seen surprise turnarounds from Stanford over the years in this series. There would have to be quite the reversal in Palo Alto for that to play out this year but needless to say there’s a huge second half coming between the old rivals.