STANFORD, Calif. – Stanford’s effective keep-away tactics have effectively killed Washington’s College Football Playoff hopes.
Worse yet, the Huskies’ chances of repeating as Pac-12 Conference champs took a mighty blow as well.
Stanford’s offense held onto the ball for 35 minutes and wore down the nation’s top-ranked defense, knocking off No. 9 Huskies 30-22 Friday night at Stanford Stadium.
Bryce Love rushed for 166 yards, and Stanford (7-3, 6-2 Pac-12) moved ahead of the Huskies (8-2, 5-2) atop the Pac-12 North standings.
Things unraveled in a hurry for the Huskies in the second half.
Washington’s offense went three-and-out to start the third quarter. Stanford then went 65 yards on nine plays – eating up 4:28 off the clock – in taking its first lead on Love’s 13-yard touchdown run.
The Huskies ran just five plays in 96 seconds on their next possession, giving way to a Stanford offense that then held the ball for the next 7:38 while driving 81 yards on 13 plays, capped by Jet Toner’s field goal to push Stanford’s lead to 20-14.
On UW’s next possession, Gaskin fumbled for just the second time in his career. Stanford recovered at the UW 31-yard line and added another field goal to make it 23-14.
On third down of Washington’s ensuing possession, Browning was sacked for a loss of 18 yards back to the UW 6. Joel Whitford’s ensuing punt netted just 37 yards and a UW penalty on the punt return gave Stanford possession at the UW 14.
Two plays later, Love scored his third rushing touchdown, from 9 yards, to push the lead to 30-14.