Pre-UCLA Quick Hitter: Chase Thomas

With the loss of Shayne Skov, one of Stanford's most talented defensive playmakers and its emotional leader on defense, to a season-ending knee injury, several other players will have to step up to fill the void left by his absence. Largest among those players is Chase Thomas, the Cardinal's second standout linebacker.

In a recent interview, Thomas talked about the challenges of replacing Skov, as well as Stanford's matchup with a dangerous UCLA offense this weekend.

Shayne was a big leader for you on defense. With him out for the season, how are you going to step up and try and fill that leadership role that he played for much of last season and this season?

Chase Thomas: I'm just going to try and be a little more of a vocal leader on the field. He did a good job of getting the guys fired up and I'm just going to try and do my best. It's going to be a little hard to replace him but I'm going to try my best to do that. We've got two other guys in Delano Howell and Michael Thomas, who are just as big of a deal in that category. We've got some guys that are good leaders out there on the field.

Who's stepped up to try and replace his production at that middle linebacker spot?

CT: Jarek Lancaster. He's been rotated in all year and all throughout camp. He's shown that he can do a great job so far. We have great trust and faith in him to step right in, and we have faith that he'll do his job and we can count on him to do what he's got to do.

Turning to UCLA, you guys are facing a team that hasn't really shown a lot of promise this season but still has some dangerous playmakers in the backfield. How are you going to try and contain that running game?

CT: They run the Pistol, so there's a lot of smoke and mirrors in front of you. You just have to do your job and count on the guy next to you to do his job correctly. If we do that, we should be able to come out on top.

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