In the Pac-12 Championship game, the Stanford Cardinal and the UCLA Bruins will play each other for the second time in the span of a week.
On Saturday the Stanford Cardinal defeated the UCLA Bruins by the final score of 35-17 and with the win the Cardinal earned, well a rematch. These two teams will meet again on Friday night and this time the Pac-12 Championship and a trip to the Rose Bowl will be on the line.
The only thing that will stop the Cardinal from a repeat performance is over confidence.
The Cardinal defense is awesome. They have the No.1 rushing defense in the entire nation and possess a relentless pass rush that can rattle any quarterback. The Bruins know this all too well as the defense sacked Brett Hundley seven times and bottled up Johnathan Franklin, holding the superstar running back to just 65 yards rushing.
If the Bruins are going to improve they will need to prepare better in a short time span, but according to their head coach, not much will change.
“We’re pretty consistent in our approach this week,” said UCLA head coach Jim Mora. “I didn’t see a whole lot of difference in our preparation and in our approach before the game. We did not play as well as we can.”
The Bruins are still making the mental mistakes that will cost them the game. The Bruins were penalized 12 times for 135 yards in the last game against Stanford and if the Cardinal game plan is clicking early look for a similar outcome.
Hundley is a redshirt freshman and the big stage will be too much for him to handle if he cannot get off to a good start. Stanford’s defense can get to him early and set the tone for a long night.
Jim Mora should be applauded for his quick-turnaround of the UCLA football program, but the Cardinal is the superior team in nearly every facet of the game.
On offense the Cardinal have one of the most underrated players in all of college football.
Stepfan Taylor. Taylor is a powerful runner that amassed 142 yards against the Bruins. He can do it all on the field from running to blocking and making a game plan to contain him in one week is nearly impossible.
Kevin Hogan is an excellent quarterback he safely manages the game and puts his team in a position to put points on the board with nearly every drive.
Stanford is underrated and has played outstanding football against the best teams in the country. The win over Oregon and the near-win against Notre Dame was not a fluke. Stanford will show just how good they are once again with a big win over UCLA and a trip to the Rose Bowl.
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