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LOS ANGELES – Stanford takes on Michigan State in the 100th Rose Bowl Game presented by VIZIO at 1:30 p.m. PT Jan. 1, 2014, at the Rose Bowl Stadium in Pasadena, Calif..
Stanford (11-2, 7-2 Pac-12), ranked fifth in the latest BCS standings, earned the automatic bid following a convincing 38-14 victory at Arizona State in the Pac-12 Football Championship Game. Stanford is making its fourth consecutive BCS bowl appearance, and the Cardinal is one of just five programs to have accomplished that feat.
Michigan State enters the game ranked fourth by the BCS and finished the regular season with a 12-1 overall record (8-0 Big Ten). The Spartans earned the Big Ten Conference’s BCS automatic bid after defeating Ohio State in the Big Ten Football Championship Game, 34-24. The Spartans return to the Rose Bowl Game for their fifth appearance all-time; the last taking place in 1988. Michigan State is 3-1 overall in its Rose Bowl Game appearances.
Now in its 14th appearance all-time in the Rose Bowl Game, Stanford returns to Pasadena for a second straight season, its first back-to-back trip since 1970-71.
The 100th Rose Bowl Game will mark the sixth meeting all-time between the Spartans and Cardinal. Michigan State leads the series, 3-2. This is the first Rose Bowl Game matchup between these teams.
Pre-game festivities will begin Jan. 1 and include a musical performance of the Star-Spangled Banner by Merry Clayton, Lisa Fischer, Judith Hill and Darlene Love, as well as the official coin toss by 2014 Rose Parade Grand Marshal Vin Scully. The game will be televised nationally on ESPN with Brent Musburger, Kirk Herbstreit and Heather Cox calling the action.
• Stanford is ranked fifth in the AP top 25, seventh in the USA Today Coaches’ poll and fifth in the final Bowl Championship Series standings.
• Stanford has been ranked in the AP’s top 25 for a school-record 63 consecutive weeks. The streak is tied for the fifth longest in the nation, dating back to Sept. 5, 2010. Only Alabama (97), LSU (80), Oregon (76) and Oklahoma (64) can claim longer streaks while the Cardinal remains tied with South Carolina (63). Prior to the 2012 AP preseason poll, the Cardinal was ranked 23 consecutive weeks among its top 10.
• Stanford has compiled a 54-12 (.818) record since 2009, finishing 8-5 in 2009, 12-1 in 2010, 11-2 in 2011 and 12-2 last season.
• Stanford is the only FBS team with at least 11 wins in each of the last four seasons (Oregon can qualify with a win in the Alamo Bowl.)
Outranking The Opposition
• Stanford defeated six ranked opponents this season (No. 23 Arizona State, No. 15 Washington, No. 9 UCLA, No. 2 Oregon, No. 25 Notre Dame, No. 11 Arizona State - Pac-12 Football Championship Game) including five at Stanford Stadium. Four of those home victories were in consecutive home games. All marks are the first such occurrences in program history.
• Stanford is 10-0 in its last nine games against opponents ranked in the AP top 25, including 6-0 this season.
• Head coach David Shaw owns a 4-1 record on the road against top-25 opponents over the past two seasons with all four wins coming against Pac-12 foes (2013 at No. 11 Arizona State, 2012 at No. 1 Oregon, 2012 at No. 15 UCLA, 2011 at No. 20 USC). The lone loss came in 2012 at No. 7 Notre Dame.
• Stanford, Georgia, Rice and Tulane shared the American Football Coaches Association’s 2013 Academic Achievement Award, which is presented by the Touchdown Club of Memphis. The four schools recorded a 100 percent graduation rate for members of its freshman football student-athlete class of 2006. This is the second honor for Stanford, which also won the award in 2012.
• The Sagarin ratings show that Pac-12 teams played the toughest schedules this year. Washington St. (1), Arizona St. (2), Utah (3), Stanford (4), Cal (5), UCLA (6) and Colorado (7) all finished in the top 10.
• Stanford is playing in a bowl game for a fifth straight season, a fourth straight BCS game and second straight Rose Bowl Game.
• Playing in the Rose Bowl Game in consecutive seasons for the first time since 1970-1971, the Cardinal looks to improve upon its 6-7 all-time record in the game.
• Stanford is one of just five schools to play in four straight BCS games.
Run This State
• Stanford has won 33 of its last 35 games played in California (only losses at USC in 2013 and against No. 6 Oregon in 2011).
• Under head coach David Shaw, Stanford is 34-6 overall, 23-4 in Pac-12 play, 31-3 when scoring first and 10-3 in league road games.
• Shaw notched 30 career wins in his first 35 games, which is the third-fastest among active coaches (Larry Coker [with Miami: 30-31], Chris Peterson [with Boise State: 30-33]).
• Shaw is one of just three coaches to lead his team to BCS bowls in his first three years as head coach (Chip Kelly and Larry Coker).
In a Rush
• Stanford is 32-2 under head coach David Shaw when out-rushing an opponent, and 19-4 when the Cardinal produces a 100-yard rusher.
• Stanford has held opponents to 20 or fewer points in 20 of its last 25 games. Dating back to 2010, the Cardinal has held 35 of its last 46 opponents to 20 or fewer points.
• Stanford has not allowed an opponent to score 30 points in its last 21 games. Michigan State (26) is the only school with a longer such streak.
• Stanford leads the nation with 40 sacks (and sack yards with 294) after leading the nation last year as well. On a per-game basis, Stanford ranks seventh nationally (3.1/game). The Cardinal ranks 12th in tackles for loss (7.5/game).
• The Cardinal has at least one tackle for loss in each of its last 48 contests and at least one sack in 32 of its last 33 outings (only game without a sack came at Army, which attempted just 10 passes).
• According to ESPN Stats & Info, Stanford has made initial contact with opposing rushers at or behind the line of scrimmage on 48 percent of their carries.
• Stanford has allowed just 451 rushing yards over its last seven games, an average of 64.4 yards/game, with only one team reaching the 100-yard mark over that stretch.
• Stanford has the nation’s third-ranked rushing defense (91.2 ypg) despite playing teams that ranked highly on the national scene in rushing offense including Army (2nd), Oregon (9th), Washington (14th), UCLA (38th) and Arizona State (47th - twice).
Get Your Kicks
• Stanford ranks first in the FBS in kickoff return average at 27.79 yards/return (39-1,084). The current average is close to the best in school annals. The top single-season mark is 27.5 (58-1,597), set in 2009.
Paper, or Plastic?
• Stanford enters bowl season leading all FBS teams with 194 sacks since 2009. Virginia Tech is second with 184.
• Stanford has 2,742 rushing yards. The season record is 2,837 set in 2009.
• In Stanford’s 11 victories, junior QB Kevin Hogan has attempted just 17 fourth-quarter passes (nine completions).
• Stanford has won each of its last three games in which it has completed fewer than 10 passes (7 vs. Oregon in 2013, 8 vs. Oregon State in 2013, 7 vs. Washington State in 2012).
• Stanford’s offensive line has been whistled for just two holding penalties this season, and just one from the line of scrimmage (covering 832 offensive snaps). The one penalty from the line of scrimmage negated a touchdown and forced a field goal against Notre Dame.
Dig the Long Ball
• Stanford has scored 23 offensive touchdowns covering 20 or more yards on the season.
• Trent Murphy, Ty Montgomery and David Yankey have been named to virtually every All-America first-team including the nation’s oldest, the Walter Camp Football Foundation. It marks the second time in the last three years that Stanford has had three WCFF All-Americans, with eight first teamers in the past five years.
• Stanford’s general public ticket sale for the Rose Bowl Game sold out in four minutes. Current season ticket holders and students claimed over 95 percent of the school’s 30,000 ticket allotment. Last year Stanford sold nearly 40,000 tickets to the Rose Bowl Game.
• Stanford sold out all seven home games this season, the first occurrence in school history.