Sept. 17, 2012
STANFORD, Calif. - The No. 9 ranked Stanford Cardinal has been named the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl National Team of the Week following Saturday's 21-14 victory over then-No. 2 USC, the Pac-12 Conference opener for both schools.
Before a sellout crowd of 50,360 at Stanford Stadium, the Cardinal twice came back in the game, scoring with senior running back Stepfan Taylor on the ground from 59 yards out in the first quarter and again by Taylor in the third quarter, this time from 23 yards out on a screen pass by senior quarterback Josh Nunes. In his third collegiate start, Nunes struck with the game-winning score in the fourth quarter on a pass to senior tight end Zach Ertz.
The Stanford defense put forth one of its most memorable performances in school history, sacking USC four times and recording 12 tackles for loss. The defense strengthened as the game progressed, allowing no scores the final 41 minutes of the game. USC in the second half was held to minus-13 total rushing yards and six scoreless possessions (4 punt, 2 turnover on downs), including four three-and-outs. The Cardinal forced three turnovers.
Members of the Football Writers Association of America's All-America Committee decide the weekly honor. The FWAA has named a national team of the week since the 2002 season. This is the fourth time that Stanford has been named National Team of the Week by the FWAA (Oct. 31, 2011; Nov. 16, 2009; Oct. 8, 2007). This is the eighth season that the award has been sponsored by the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl.
Stanford this week has risen to No. 9 in the AP Top 25 Poll and No. 11 in the USA TODAY Sports Coaches Poll. The Cardinal will next play at Washington on Thursday, Sept. 27.
Three regular season home games remain for the Cardinal at Stanford Stadium this season - Oct. 6 versus Arizona, Oct. 27 versus Washington State and Nov. 10 versus Oregon State - and tickets may be purchased online at GoStanford.com, at the ticket office or by calling 800-STANFORD. The Cardinal Collectible Mini Plan for all three games starts at $99 and includes an Andrew Luck bobblehead.