Site: Stanford Stadium
Time: 12:30 p.m. tomorrow
TV: KGUN (Channel 9)
Radio: KNST-AM (790)
Series Record: Arizona leads 8-5
Stanford coach Bill Walsh likes to plan out his first few plays before a game. The ink on his script may still be wet tomorrow morning as his highly-touted offense matches with Arizona's defense.
In his teleconference this week, he said the Cardinal will rely on the pass and move to the run only if they're ahead. But still expect to see Mike Mitchell handed the ball several times in the early stages.
Steve Stenstrom is a proven passer and a good scrambler, putting himself among the elite of the quarterback-stocked Pac-10. Wide receiver Justin Armour (nine receptions, 170 yards) is one of his favorite targets. The UA defense has its work cut out for it, particularly the secondary. Some pressure from the defensive line, which only has five sacks so far, will lessen the impact of the Cardinal's multi-dimensional offensive attack.
Quietly, the UA offense has gotten things done on offense in Arizona's first two games with an average of 439 yards. Like the Cardinal, Arizona would no doubt like to see success in its running attack. Stanford's defense ranks third in the conference in rushing and total defense which may put pressure on UA quarterback Dan White to throw more often than normally.
Ultimately, the game could easily boil down to a consistent effort from UA kicker Steve McLaughlin or Stanford's Eric Abrams. Either of those two could also provide the final answer on the final play, as McLaughlin did last year.
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