2009 Stanford Cardinal Football Preview
2009 Stanford Cardinal season preview from Maddux Sports. Below you can find our official Stanford Cardinal football preview as well as the 2009 Stanford Cardinal Football Schedule. Haven't had much luck beating your bookie? This season up your chances and order Maddux's winning college football picks.
Coach: Jim Harbaugh (3rd year at Stanford)
Team Name: Cardinal
2008 Overall Record: 5-7
Returning Starters: 17
Last season, the Stanford Cardinal (5- 7 overall, 4- 5 Pac-10) finished tied for sixth in the conference. Although they continued their trend of posting more loses than wins, they showed improvement and earned some respectability. Now entering the third year of head coach Jim Harbaugh’s rebuilding plan, the team should continue to show improvement.
The 54th ranked Stanford offense put 26.3 PPG on the board. Running back Toby Gerhart (210 CAR, 1,136 YDs, 15 TDs), now a senior, had a breakout season. He paced the 19th ranked running attack in the nation. The big question for this team concerns the quarterback spot. Last year, QB Tavita Pritchard (254 ATT, 147 COMP, 1,633 YDS, 13 INT, 10 TDs), now a senior, was inaccurate and immobile. It looks like he will backup reshirted freshman signal caller Andrew Luck. The receiving unit is deep with the speedy Doug Baldwin (23 REC, 322 YDs, 4 TDS) and top performing Ryan Whalen (41 REC, 508 YDs, 1 TD) both returning. The line has lost two All-Conference players but there’s enough stability and talent to make this a group a big asset.
On the defensive side of the ball, Stanford was rated 71st in points allowed as opponents averaged 27.4 PPG against the big red bird. This an area in which the club must improve drastically. The pass rush was substantial with defensive ends Tom Keiser and Erik Loring combining for nine sacks. The unit is anchored by one of the finest nose tackles in the conference—Ekom Udofia. There’s been some loses in the linebacking squad, which means highly rated new recruit Shayne Skov could see action immediately. Senior MLB Clinton Snyder (58 TKLs, 3 SKs, 3.5 TFL) is a key part of this group. The secondary is solid. Senior free safety Bo McNally (76 TKLs, 2 SKs, 4 TFL, 4 INTs) is a force with which to be reckoned. Corner Kris Evans (67 TKLs, 1 SK, 4 TFL, 2 INTs) is a playmaker.
In the specialist area, the kick return unit was stellar with Jeremy Stewart (14 RET, 328 YDs, 23.4 YPR) and Delano Howell (11 RET, 284 YDs, 25.8 YPR) offering constant yardage. More good news—Baldwin (18 RET, 155 YDs, 8.6 YPR) is back to field punt returns. Punter David Green (53 Punts, 2,116 YDs, 39.9 YPP, 17 In20) offers accuracy and distance. The placekicking spot looks to be filled by Notre Dame transfer Nate Whitaker.
For this season, Harbaugh (9- 15 in two years at Stanford) has recruited eight four-star and 12 three star players. This is the best incoming class Stanford has seen in years. In 2008, they opened on the road by beating Oregon State 36- 28. This year they start their season by traveling to Washington State. That too should be a win. The Cardinal 2009 schedule is tougher than last year’s with the team’s first two games on the road, including a contest versus Wake Forest. The October 3 game at home with UCLA will determine just how good this team is. This Standford club will finish sixth or seventh but will not be bowl bound. In 2010, they could be contender in the Pac-10.
Stanford Cardinal Football Schedule
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For more info on the 2009 Stanford Cardinal football program, view the Cardinal football site or you can read about other Pac-10 teams below.