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3-2-1, football: The Daily’s primer on Stanford

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3-2-1, football: The Daily’s primer on Stanford

Former UW tight end Drew Sample is brought down near the end zone by a duo of Stanford defenders on Nov. 3, 2018. 

The No. 15 Washington football team is hitting the road for the second time this season, and the first time in conference play, taking on Stanford in Palo Alto, Calif. on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. Before the Huskies take the field, read up on the Cardinal.

3 Numbers to Know

13: The last time Stanford was giving up more than 29 points per game was 13 years ago in 2006, a year where it finished 1-11. Giving up 29.2 points per game thus far this season, the Cardinal have underwhelmed on defense and rank near the bottom of the Pac-12 in many defensive categories, including turnovers forced, yards given up, and points allowed per game. However, in their two home games this season against Northwestern (7 points) and Oregon (21 points), the Cardinal have only allowed an average of 14 points per game, nearly half their season average. 

5: Backup quarterback Davis Mills was the top prep pro-style quarterback in the country in 2017, arriving in Palo Alto as a five-star freshman two years ago. With uncertainty at the quarterback position given a thumb injury to starter KJ Costello, Stanford may have to trot out the backup, Mills, who has already started two games this season. The junior has thrown for 597 yards, and four touchdowns with a 62.5% completion percentage. He has also limited his mistakes and turnovers, only throwing one interception, with his longest throw going for 39 yards. 

1: Trading blows year-by-year with one another, just one game separates the Huskies and Cardinal in the all-time series record. After last season’s 27-23 win in Seattle, the Huskies hold a 43-42-4 edge in the all-time series, with most of the recent games being decided by less than one score. 

2 Players to Watch

Colby Parkinson - TE

The 6-foot, 7-inch tight end is among the nation’s elite playmakers at the position, with 20 receptions for 222 yards and a touchdown on the season. Parkinson is the latest in a long line of success Stanford tight ends, and accounts for almost 20% of all of the Cardinal’s receptions. With an average height in the UW’s starting defensive backfield being 5-foot, 11.5 inches, Washington’s DBs will be giving up nearly a foot in height to the giant Stanford TE. 

Paulson Adebo - CB

Despite being heralded as a can’t miss cornerback prospect in the upcoming 2020 NFL Draft, Adebo has not helped the Cardinal secondary to a successful year in 2019. The junior has five pass breakups and one interception, but the Stanford defensive backfield has given up 287.4 passing yards per game, fourth-worst in the Pac-12. The struggle was especially apparent in road contests against UCF and USC, where the Cardinal gave up a combined 724 passing yards, seven passing touchdowns, and produced no interceptions. 

1 Recap of Last Week

The Cardinal snapped their three game losing streak against the bottom-feeder Beavers last weekend, but it wasn’t without stress for the road team. Through three quarters, Stanford held on to what it thought was a dominant 21-7 lead. With just seven minutes to go in the game, it was 28-14 after Mills found Parkinson for an 8-yard touchdown. 

But quick scoring drives from Oregon State were enough to tie the game with 1:55 remaining, and a chance at the upset in Corvallis. It took a game-winning drive from their backup quarterback and a 39-yard field goal from Jet Toner to barely escape with a 31-28 win.

Reach Sports Editor Alec Dietz at Twitter: @AlecDietz

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