Christian McCaffrey continues to pile up yardage no matter how he gets the ball and the Stanford football coaching staff tries to get it in his hands every way possible short of putting him on defense.
McCaffrey rushed for a team-best 109 yards, led the 10th-ranked Cardinal with five receptions and another 112 yards and returned three kickoffs for 79 yards. Put it all together and that's another 300-yard night for the sophomore running back.
Stanford coach David Shaw. Photo by Bob Drebin/isiphotos.com
"They don't give up a lot of big plays, so we knew there were going to have to be some eight-, nine-, ten-, 12-play drives," Stanford coach David Shaw said. "If we wanted to score, we had to be methodical and systematical and convert on third downs and find a way to create some yardage."
The Cardinal outdid itself, completing a 15-play, 90-yard drive in 8 minutes, 11 seconds. It included to big-time conversations, once on third down and once on fourth.
The game also served as the focal point of Reunion Homecoming Weekend and the McCaffrey's of Stanford had to feel mighty proud.
The Cardinal (6-1 overall, 5-0 in the Pac-12) travels to Washington State for a Halloween night special to be aired by ESPN.
Hogan became Stanford's all-time leader in rushing yards by a quarterback and he surpassed Jim Plunkett to claim the fourth spot on the Cardinal's all-time passing yards list.
"His leadership has been huge for us," Shaw said. "He's been as efficient as any quarterback in college football over the last month and a half: making great decisions, not making a lot of mistakes. He's come up with some really nice balls, giving guys a chance to make plays. Then he's back, even with the bad ankle, he's back to being hard to tackle."
After scoring once through the first four games, McCaffrey has picked up the pace, scoring seven times over the past three games. Only Remound Wright has scored more, and he's the goal line specialist. He did his thing against the Huskies, finding the end zone once.
"I don't go into football games expecting not to get hit. It's a physical game," McCaffrey said. "That's what our strength staff prepares us for -- the physicality. That's kind of what we're built on. So I love that stuff. I love contact. That's why we all play."
McCaffrey also enjoyed his fifth consecutive 100-yard rushing effort, matching Stepfan Taylor and Tyler Gaffney for second-longest in school history. He became the fourth Stanford player to record 100 yards rushing and receiving in the same game and the first since Glyn Milburn in 1991.
"I don't know what else I can say other than watch him," Shaw said. "He's so quick; he's so explosive. The little guy never gets tired. He gets pounded, he gets hit, he gets blown up on a kickoff return and we want to take him out to see if he's OK, and he comes up with a smile on his face and says, 'Coach, I'm fine.' We put him back out there, and he gets after it again."
The Cardinal has scored more than 30 points in its sixth straight, since ending an NCAA-record streak of 95 straight with at least 10 points in its season-opening, 16-6, loss to Northwestern.
"You've got a quarterback in Kevin Hogan who can command the field," McCaffrey said. "His physical play is definitely noticed. When he's not throwing the ball, he's getting yards with his feet. He's always getting us to the right play. He's one of the smartest guys I've ever met on the field. Just some of the stuff he gets us to, that's really what gels us and keeps us going."
And going . . . .