BYU to Play First-Ever Road Game at Stanford

After defeating Notre Dame in a close game last Saturday at LaVell Edwards Stadium to open the season, BYU travels to Palo Alto, Calif., this weekend to face off against Stanford. The Cardinal defeated BYU 18-14 last season in a game the Cougars led in until late in the game. Stanford scored nine points in the fourth quarter to earn the narrow victory.

This is only the second meeting between these two programs, and the first time BYU will play in Palo Alto.

KICKOFF: 7:00 p.m. (PST)
LOCATION: Palo Alto, Calif., Stanford Stadium (85,500)
TELEVISION: National – CSTV; KUTV2 in Utah. The game will be rebroadcast on KBYU-TV on Sept. 13 at 10:30 p.m. and on BYU-TV on Sept. 13 at 5 p.m. and 10:30 p.m.
RADIO: KSL-Radio; 1160 AM (Greg Wrubell, Marc Lyons, Bill Riley)
SERIES RECORD: Stanford leads 1-0
LAST MEETING: Sept. 20, 2004 (Stanford 18-14)

The Cougars will play in five nationally televised games during the 2004 season. BYU's game last Saturday marked the 10th straight season the Cougars have opened the season playing on either ESPN, ESPN2 or ABC. On Sept. 11, BYU will participate in the first Division I-A football game broadcast on CSTV (College Sports TV). The Cougars will host defending National Champion USC on Sept. 18 in a nationally broadcast game on ESPN, beginning at 8 p.m. (MT). The following week, BYU will travel to Boise State for a second straight nationally televised game on ESPN. On Oct. 8, the Cougars will host UNLV for a prime time, MWC match-up on ESPN2.

Saturday's game will mark the first-ever Division I-A college football broadcast by College Sports TV. In 1984, BYU was also involved in another historic college football broadcast against Pittsburgh -- the first-ever, live Div. 1 college football game broadcast on ESPN. Since 1974, BYU has posted a 53-37-2 record on national television, including the Cougars' 20-17 victory over Notre Dame on Saturday.

During the Gary Crowton era, the Cougars are 1-2 in road-opening games. The two losses were closely contested games. Last season, BYU opened on the road against eventual co-National Champion USC. After falling behind 21-0 in the first quarter, the Cougars made a game of it, pulling to within three in the fourth quarter before the Trojans added two late touchdowns to account for the final score.

In 2002, BYU traveled to Reno, Nev. to take on Nevada-Reno. The Cougars lost a close game, 31-28. In Crowton's first year at BYU, the Cougars also traveled to the Bay Area to take on the California Bears with BYU winning 44-16.

BACK TO CALI: The Stanford game this weekend it will be the Cougars' 57th trip to California. BYU has an overall record of 24-29-3 (.453), including bowl games, in California. BYU's first game in California was in 1926 when the Cougars fought to a 0-0 tie with UC Davis. Last year, BYU posted a 1-1 record in the state, losing to USC 35-18 and defeating San Diego State 44-36. Also, BYU has 23 players on its roster from California – the second most of any state behind Utah. Joe Griffin, a junior college transfer wide receiver who is redshirting this year, is from East Palo Alto and went to high school at Palo Alto High School. Other Cougars' with ties to the Bay Area are Kayle Buchanan (San Jose), Gary and Greg Lovely (Los Altos Hills), Junior Kato (Daly City) and David Sollami (Daly City).

Both BYU coach Gary Crowton and Stanford coach Buddy Teevins have ties to the football hotbed of New Hampshire. Crowton was the offensive coordinator at the University of New Hampshire, Durham, from 1988-1990. Teevins graduated from Dartmouth, Hanover, in 1979 and was the head coach there from 1987-1991. New Hampshire and Dartmouth squared off once during the two coaches' tenures, a 21-21 tie in 1990.

BYU played every team on its 2004 schedule last year. The only opponent missing from BYU's non-conference 2003 schedule is Georgia Tech. Last season the Cougars finished 1-4 in non-conference games with its only victory coming against the Yellow Jackets. In 1992, the Cougars faced off against UCLA, Utah State, Notre Dame and Penn State in their non-conference schedule and played all four of those teams again in 1993.

Matt Payne had a stellar day against Notre Dame in the Cougars' first game. Payne, who led the nation in net punting as a sophomore, punted nine times for an average of 46.8 yards per punt. Only two of Payne's punts were returned and six were downed inside the 20 and four inside the 10, leaving him with a net average of 45.6 yards per punt. He also kicked two-field goals, one of which tied his career-long of 53 yards set last year against USC. For his efforts, Payne was named the MWC Co-Player of the Week and Russell Athletic player of the game.

Stanford boats one of the most successful athletics departments in the country. The Cardinal has won 71 national championships since 1980–the most in the nation.

While BYU's success may pale in comparison to Stanford, the Cougars have also experienced success on a national level. Since 1970, when BYU captured its first NCAA title, the Cougars have won 10 national championships – including four in cross-country and three in men's volleyball since 1997. BYU also won the national championship in football in 1984. BYU has also ranked high in the NACDA Director's cup, an award given to the nation's best athletic program. The Cougars have accumulated seven Top-30 rankings in the Directors Cup since 1996-97.

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