Stanford-WSU Series Flashbacks

It's easy to drum up memories of great showdowns with traditional rivals like USC, UCLA, and Cal, but the WSU series has had it moments. We now offer up a collection of memorable games that stretches back to the 1930s. This piece updates an article originally published here in October of 2003. Many of our current readers did not have the chance to see it then so we are bringing them up to date.

Memorable Stanford-WSU Flashbacks

Series Record - Stanford vs. WSU: 32-24-1

The 57 meetings in the past 71 years of gridiron rivalry between Stanford and Washington State have produced many extraordinary individual performances and numerous fantastic finishes. Exciting players and excellent coaches. Heroes and villains. A lot of guts and glory, and a few "goats." This weekend, it's Cougs vs. Cardinal once again! Who else but The Bootleg cares enough to supply you with an exhaustive, detailed collection of summary highlights (and some definite lowlights) of the long-running series that pits Pullman against Palo Alto? Look, we know that on the surface this isn't exactly the most intriguing rivalry in the country, but we had to do something to resuscitate our Stanford football souls after watching the Washington game last Saturday. So here they are, in reverse chronological order. By no means are these all of the memories, but unless you are Stanford Athletic Hall of Fame Curator Lloyd McGovern, they represent a lot more than you personally can remember! Go Cardinal! It's high time we punish these pugnacious Pumas and send them packing back to their beloved Palouse!

2006: Washington State 36, Stanford 10 @ Stanford Stadium

Pretty par for the course for the 2006 Cardinal as the Cougar "D" limits Stanford to 195 yards of total offense (despite Stanford recovering three fumbles) and just 11 first downs in front of a decidedly underwhelming crowd of 37,498 (the standard default announcement of 37,000+ apparently started last year) of which perhaps half were actually at the game. 23-0 at the half meant a lot of tailgaters stayed blissfully imbibing in the Chuck Taylor Grove during the second half. Three of 12 on third downs will kill just about any buzz, unless you ignore it completely. Bright side? The Cardinal committed just one penalty for 10 yards. Big deal.

WSU's Redshirt sophomore defensive end Michael Graise recovers a blocked punt and records a sack, but the big damage occurs when he picks off Trent Edwards and brings it back 33 yards for a pick-six to get the Cougars on the board. They never really look back. The dominating force on the field was man-child Mkristo Bruce who had a Cougar-record five sacks (out of a season total of 11!) and added another five tackles for loss. No wonder many of us were so shocked when he wasn't a first-round pick in the NFL draft. Against us, dude looked like a combined Richard Dent and Bruce Smith! Cougar running back Dwight Tardy contributes 97 of WSU's demoralizing 240 yards rushing. Fairly effortless day for quality QB Jason Brink. WSU goes just 6-6 on the year, but they go on cruise control in this one.

2005: Stanford 24, Washington State 21 @ Martin Stadium in Pullman, WA

Somehow, Stanford wins for the third straight time in Pullman. Go figure! The Card withstands a fine day from Jerome Harrison, who puts up 219 all-purpose yards (a WSU top-20 performance!). On the other hand, we get to see 475 yards of total offense from the good guys! 218 yards rushing...are you kidding me? Senior QB Trent Edwards is on fire, hitting on 19 of 28 passes for 257 yards, three TDs and no picks. He gives WSU absolute fits with his feet, finishing the day with a very impressive 92 yards on 12 carries, including multiple critical  first down runs. Walt Harris goes very conservative and does his best to run the clock down. Junior corner Nick Sanchez becomes the late-game hero for the Cardinal defense, icing the game with an INT at mid-field with just 32 seconds left. Things were looking up - Stanford would win its next two Pac-10 games and would be thinking about bowl games before losing four of its last five to finish a disappointing 5-6.

2004: Stanford 23, Washington State 17 @ Martin Stadium in Pullman, WA

A bright moment of hope as Stanford flies up to Pullman and pulls off a conference road win, its first since the 2001 season, to run its season record to 4-2 and 2-1 in conference. The flicker of encouragement would be snuffed as Stanford would not win another game in 2004, dropping five straight games. But you would not have known it on this day. 

The Card "D" managed to take some of the swagger out of WSU's Josh Swogger with three INTs - two by cornerback Leigh Torrence. On one of Stanford's more exciting plays of the '04 season, WR Justin McCullum takes a lateral from Trent Edwards and launches one to Mark Bradford 42 yards downfield to the WSU two, where J.R. Lemon then takes it in for the score and a 10-3 lead. Later, Trent hits Evan Moore for a 67-yard TD and a rare comfortable lead at 20-3. Of course, things are never comfortable for the Cardinal as Swogger subsequently throws two TDs in the fourth quarter to get within 20-17 with more than eight minutes left. Luckily, the Stanford defense, Trent Edwards' feet, junior Mike Sgroi's clutch 47-yard FG, and Buddy Teevens' clock-killing expertise leave the Cardinal with a big "W". It would be the final win for good-guy Teevens as head coach of the Cardinal.

2003: Washington State 24, Stanford 14 @ Stanford Stadium

Sixth-ranked WSU is just too hard for the Cardinal to handle in a fairly game effort by our boys. It was the third straight week Stanford was suiting up against a ranked opponent. Despite pressure from the Stanford "D", Cougar QB Matt Kegel has a big day with 331 yards passing on 47 attempts! Sammy Moore helps the Cougars' field position with six punt returns for 103 yards (fifth-best all-time at WSU), including an outstanding 64-yarder that really hurt. Trent Edwards gets knocked out of the game and back-up Chris Lewis couldn't get much going offensively against a very good Cougars squad.

2002: Washington State 36, Stanford 11 @ Stanford Stadium

 In about the only real highlight play for Stanford on this disappointing October afternoon, Stanford safety Oshiomogho Atogwe picks up a Michael Craven-caused fumble and races 42 yards to the Cougar 12-yard-line. The Cardinal has to settle for a field goal with 7:15 left in the third quarter. Not good. What's that, a miserable 2002 loss in which the only significant highlight for Stanford is a standout defensive play by Atogwe? Shocking!

The 12th-ranked Cougars are way too much for our "team-in-Tyronean-transition." In front of just 30,750 fans, WSU puts up more than 400 yards of offense, including three TD tosses from Pac-10 Co-Offensive Player of the Year Jason Gesser including 173 receiving yards from Jerome Riley before Mike Price mercifully calls off the dogs, er...cats. The Card can't do much against Rien Long & Co.The Cardinal commits eleven penalties. Ugly. Unfortunately, the highlight of our entire 2002 season may well be having six Stanford players make First Team Pac-10 All-Academic team. Again: Not good.

2001: Washington State 45, Stanford 39 @ Stanford Stadium

  1. After a quick lateral from WSU's tricky little QB Jason Gesser, Coug flanker Colin Henderson surprises Stanford with a perfectly executed option pass to Mike Bush for a 62-yard touchdown, giving WSU a 21-7 lead with 3:13 left in the first quarter.
  2. The Cardinal counters with a 17-yard Brian Allen TD run with 26 second left in the first quarter and, less than a minute later, adds an 18-yard TD pass from Card QB Randy Fasani to towering tight end Darin Naatjes. This ties the score at 21-21.
  3. Disaster strikes as Stanford punter Eric Johnson's punt attempt is blocked by Josh Moen (Note: very unlucky opponent name) and ball is recovered by WSU's Jeremy Bohannon and carried four yards into the end zone for a TD.
  4. Fasani is picked off by WSU's Billy Newman who returns it 54 yards to give the Cougars a 35-21 lead with 4:21 left in the half.
  5. Stanford's Pigskin PlaymakerÔ and 2001 All-American return specialist Luke Powell delivers with a brilliant 42-yard punt return to the Cougar six, setting up a one-yard Brian Allen TD with 8:54 left in the third quarter and pulling the Cardinal within 35-32.
  6. Senior halfback Brian Allen then scores on an exciting 27-yard run to give the Cardinal the lead as the third quarter expires.
  7. Gesser & Co. grab the lead back on an 11-yard TD pass to the Cougars' dual sport wide receiver Bush to make it 42-39 for Washington State, but with 8:22 left in the game…plenty of time, right?
  8. Then comes a play that is surely a leading candidate for "Cardinal Football Lowlight of the Decade": With Stanford driving for the win, wide-open and untouched wide receiver Caleb Bowman has a perfectly-thrown ball sail painfully through his hands, negating what would have been a huge gain and possibly the game-winning touchdown. Good guy, bad luck.

This is the one that got away in a great 2001 season. Stanford got a big break when Washington State had to play without leading rusher David Minnich, but could not take advantage due to untimely mistakes and turnovers. The #22 Cardinal comes out slugging, battling with a potent Cougar attack to produce a combined 59 points and 525 yards of offense in the first half. Stanford running back Brian Allen gains 133 yards and scores three touchdowns in a losing effort.

2000: Stanford 24, Washington State 10 - Season Opener at Martin Stadium in Pullman, WA

  1. In his first career start, mobile Stanford QB Randy Fasani bolts for a 38-yard gain on 3rd &2 to set up a 22-yard Mike Biselli field goal.
  2. Fasani drops a short pass to RB Kerry Carter, who weaves his way for a spectacular 84-yard TD.
  3. Stanford senior strong safety Aaron Focht puts the nail in the Cougar coffin with a late interception in the end zone with 1:51 left in the game.

Stanford scores all of its points in the second quarter. The Cardinal defense manages to contain the conference's most efficient quarterback, crafty little Jason Gesser, holding him to 161 yards in the air with two interceptions and no touchdowns.

1999: Stanford 54, Washington State 17 @ Stanford Stadium

  1. Stanford cornerback Ruben "Get" Carter picks off WSU quarterback Steve "Pear Tree" Birnbaum with 26 seconds left in the first quarter and returns it 67 yards for TD.
  2. Stanford sophomore place-kicker Mike Biselli kicks career-best 52-yard field goal to give Stanford a 10-0 lead in the first quarter, the longest by a Card kicker in a decade!
  3. Stanford QB Todd Husak finds WR Troy Walters for a 44-yard TD with 14:42 left in the first half.
  4. One-time walk-on fullback and special teams standout Emory Brock takes a blocked kick 13 yards into the end zone with 1:32 left in the first half to give the Cardinal a commanding 38-10 halftime lead.
  5. Stanford's linebacker/defensive end Riall Johnson, whose stellar performance earns him Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Week, records a career-high FIVE sacks including a tackle of WSU QB Jason Gesser for a safety with 11:28 left in the game.

The "Sheriff of Willingham" and his Rose Bowl-bound Stanford squad stun the Cougar Nation in a nationally-televised Pac-10 opener. Amazingly, the break-out performance, which included the highest-ever point total for a Stanford team in a conference opener, comes just one week after the Cardinal suffered a humiliating 69-17 loss to Texas to start the season. Leaford Hackett had 10 receptions for the Cougars, and Steve Gleason had 11 assisted tackles, but there wasn't much else happening for WSU that day.

1998: Stanford 38, Washington State 28: Stanford Stadium

  1. WSU QB Paul Mencke gets hot, with a first quarter TD pass of 62 yards to Nian "Deon" Taylor. Another Mencke pass goes for a 75-yard TD to Cougar speedster Jason White, who along with the current Oklahoma QB and Heisman candidate, seem to be just about the only "Jason Whites" on record ever not to play for Stanford.
  2. JC transfer Kevin Brown, the conference's third-best rusher in 1998, scores on a 55-yard run to put the Cougars ahead 21-14 with 3:57 left in first half. He would finish the day with 202 net yards rushing. Wow!
  3. With Stanford down 28-14 with 12:02 left in the game, legendary walk-on and fourth-string running back Jon Eide scores from 11 yards out to inspire the Cardinal!
  4. Cardinal QB "Joltin' Joe" Borchard, who'd entered the game in place of Husak after the half, hooks up with junior receiver and Stanford sparkplug Troy Walters on an 80-yard TD pass with 7:28 remaining in the game.

Yet another stirring come-back victory for the Cardinal, helped out by five interceptions by the much-maligned Cardinal secondary, three by safety Tim Smith. After a Rose Bowl season in 1997, Cougar QB Ryan Leaf bolted early for the NFL as the second overall draft pick. He left WSU struggling to find a replacement QB, causing the Cougs to finish a disastrous 0-8 in the conference (their first un-feated conference performance since 1975). WSU committed an atrocious 36 turnovers during the 1998 season. Walters finished with an average day (for him): seven catches for 143 yards.

1997: Washington State 38, Stanford 28 @ Martin Stadium in Pullman, WA

  1. Substitute QB Todd Husak finds sophomore receiver Troy Walters for a 59-yard TD to put the Cardinal on the board with 13:55 left in the first half.
  2. Husak hits Walters again for a five-yard TD with 8:39 left in the half.
  3. Walters goes nuts in the clutch, scoring on a thrilling 77-yard TD punt return and giving the Cardinal a brief lead at 28-27, eight seconds into the fourth quarter.

A scrappy Stanford squad surprisingly made a game of this one, leading in the fourth quarter against heavily-favored and #14-ranked WSU, which would finish 10-1 in the regular season in winning the Pac-10. Stanford tailback Anthony Bookman rushes for 115 yards on 11 carries. However, Stanford's defense simply didn't have an answer for WSU running back Michael Black, who broke loose for 173 yards on 27 carries. Stanford's back-up quarterback Todd Husak, filling in for an injured Chad Hutchinson, was intercepted four times in one of his only rough performances in a stellar career. Cougar kicker Rian Lindell boots a 52-yard field goal.

The Cougars, led by record-setting All-American QB Ryan Leaf (3rd in 1997 Heisman voting) and his "Fab Five" receiving crew, were well on their way to their first trip to Pasadena in 67 years, only to get shafted at the end of the Rose Bowl against Michigan. Cougar Coach Mike Price goes on to be named National Coach of the Year

1996: Stanford 33 Washington State 17 @ Stanford Stadium (Cardinal's fifth-straight win in series)

  1. With the Sun Bowl on the line and just 22 seconds remaining before halftime, redshirt freshman phenom Troy Walters scores on a spectacular 75-yard punt return to tie the score at 14-14.
  2. Stanford QB Chad Hutchinson finds fleet-footed senior receiver Damon "Hit & Run" Dunn for a 58-yard TD one minute into the second half .
  3. Jon "Hit Man" Haskins sacks Ryan Leaf in the end zone for a safety with 3:59 left in the game, the third point-producing sack of a Cougar QB by the Stanford defense in the schools' last four meetings.

The Cougar defense, led by stud linebacker James Darling's 12 tackles, holds Stanford to 308 yards of offense, but special teams, fumble-free offense, and an opportunistic defense win the day for the good guys. Stanford's win is the difference in keeping the Cougars from enjoying a winning record in 1996.

1995: Stanford 36, Washington State 28 @ Martin Stadium in Pullman, WA

  1. With the Card down 17-3 and things looking grim, senior QB Mark Butterfield finds Brian "You The" Manning for a momentum-changing 35-yard TD pass with 1:11 left in the first half.
  2. Butterfield gives Stanford the lead for good, finding junior running back Anthony "Bookman Up the Middle" Bookman for a 25-yard TD with 10:01 left in the third quarter.
  3. The back-breaker: Bookman produces a 42-yard punt return followed quickly by junior flanker Damon Dunn's score on a 10-yard reverse seven seconds into the fourth quarter.
  4. The finishing touch: senior star receiver Mark "100%" Harris grabs a 54-yard pass from Mark Butterfield with 9:46 left in the game.

On a cold and rainy night in Pullman, Card QB Mark Butterfield throws for 320 yards and three TDs. Bookman has 123 yards on 21 carries and a career-high 235 all-purpose yards. Harris catches 4 balls for 120 yards. Cardinal is subjected to constant, annoying Cat growls and crowd cheers of "And that's another Cougar-First-Down!" as WSU does manage to pick up 27 first downs in the game. Your Bootleg co-founders were down on the sidelines leading the comeback. Note: Pretty solid hot chocolate from the concessions at Martin…and they let you keep the plastic mug!

1992: Stanford 40, Washington State 3 @ Stanford Stadium

  1. Stanford's Steve Stenstrom hits all-purpose back Glyn Milburn on a 42-yard TD pass with just 39 seconds to go in the first half.
  2. Milburn busts a 31-yard run for a TD with 3:14 left in the third quarter, the beginning of a 30-0 run in the second half.
  3. Milburn again, running it in from 21 yards out to put the game away with 11:47 left.
  4. Stanford senior defensive back Ron Redell picks up a Shaumbe Wright-Fair fumble and returns it 48 yards to the Cougar four, setting up an Ellery Roberts TD run.
  5. Cougar All-American QB Drew Bledsoe is sacked in the end zone for a safety with 7:02 left in the game (second consecutive year with a score off of a sack of Bledsoe by the abusive "Lynch Mob").

The Cardinal scores 40 unanswered points on the Cougars, who would finish 9-3, as fullback Ellery Roberts rushes for 100 yards on 16 carries and that final TD.

Stanford's "G-Men" contain star Cougar running back Shaumbe Wright-Fair, keeping the Second Team All-Conference back under 100 yards. WSU's All-American QB Drew Bledsoe gets "Lynched" by the stout Cardinal defense, managing only 145 yards through the air and would turn pro after his junior season in 1992 rather than play Stanford again.

1991: Stanford 49, Washington State 14 at Martin Stadium in Pullman, WA

  1. Coug QB Drew Bledsoe is hit in the end zone and Stanford junior safety Seyon Albert recovers for a defensive TD with 8:59 left in the second quarter.
  2. Darrien Gordon picks off Drew Bledsoe and takes it 42 yards for a TD with 5:05 left in the first half. 
  3. "Touchdown Tommy" sets the Stanford single-season touchdown record with a two-yard run with 8:38 left in the third quarter, his 17th of what would be 20 TDs on the season (plus two more in the Aloha Bowl).

Stanford nails down an Aloha Bowl berth by pounding the poor Pumas in their own Palouse, scoring a school-record 35 points in the second quarter. Vardell rushes 22 times for 140 yards and two TDs The Cougars could only hope to contain him! The "Pacific Northwest Warriors", led by current Stanford Offensive line coach Chris Dalman (who wasn;t from the Pacific Northwest) are in fine form, blowing away the WSU defensive front.

1990: Stanford 31, Washington State 13 @ Stanford Stadium

  1. Stanford split end "Easy Ed" McCaffrey snares a 69-yard pass from Jason Palumbis with 8:36 left in the second quarter, answering back 17 seconds after WSU had taken a 10-0 lead. The Cougars were de-clawed and would never score again as the Cardinal rolled for 31 unanswered points.
  2. McCaffrey takes a hand-off after a fake from Palumbis to "Touchdown Tommy" Vardell and takes it in untouched for a two-yard TD.
  3. McCaffrey scores a 34-yard TD on a terrific pass up the middle from Palumbis with 8:47 left in the third quarter.
  4. McCaffrey scores a 31-yard TD down the middle on a catch and run from Palumbis with 4:53 left in the third quarter.

This was "The Ed McCaffrey Show" as the talented wide receiver catches seven passes for 176 yards including three TDs and takes a trick-play in for a two-yard rushing touchdown to boot. Despite playing in front of just 30,000 fans, quarterback Jason Palumbis completes a gaudy 23-30 passes for 353 yards and three TDs. Other than all-world kicker-punter Jason Hanson's two field goals, WSU can't manage more than a single TD. True freshman Drew Bledsoe goes just 8-26 for 64 yards.

1988: Washington State 24, Stanford 21 @ Stanford Stadium

  1. Stanford sophomore QB Jason Palumbis hooks up with running back Charlie Young for a 33-yard touchdown with 5:43 left in the third quarter.
  2. Palumbis finds senior wide receiver Henry Green for a 17-yard score with 12:35 left in the game.

17 points in the fourth quarter are not enough to overcome a fast-start by WSU and two costly Cardinal fumbles. The Stanford defense does get to Cougar QB Timm Rosenbach with six sacks, three by First Team All-Pac-Ten linebacker Rob Hinckley, but can't stop Second Team All-Conference QB Rosenbach from shredding the Cardinal secondary for 322 yards and a TD. WSU's running back Rich Swinton has a career day with 122 yards on 34 carries. The Cougars would have a fine season, beating their Houston Cougar cousins in the Aloha Bowl.

1987: Stanford 44, Washington State 7 @ Martin Stadium in Pullman, WA

  1. Stanford QB Brian Johnson hits speedy sophomore halfback Jon Volpe over the middle for a 65-yard TD with 9:04 left in the first quarter, giving the Cardinal a 7-0 lead.
  2. Volpe, taking advantage of rare playing time on a Muster-dominated team, scores on a five-yard run to give Stanford a 140-0 lead with 6:37 left in the opening period.
  3. After WSU gets a short TD run from QB Timm Rosenbach near the end of the first quarter, a confident Brian Johnson counters by hitting redshirt junior tight end Jim Price for a 26-yard TD with 13:39 left in the first half.
  4. Yet another Volpe TD run, this one from nine yards out, brings the score to 31-7 with 3:42 left in the half.
  5. With just 1:44 left in the second quarter, Card cornerback and return specialist Alan Grant takes a punt back 77 yards for a crowd-demoralizing touchdown to give Stanford a commanding 38-7 lead.
  6. Less than a minute later, John Hopkins adds a field goal from 30 yards out to make it 41-7 at the half. It was about all she wrote.

This was current San Francisco 49er head coach Dennis Erickson's first year in Pullman. Behind redshirt freshman quarterback Brian Johnson, who was making his first career start, Stanford obliterated a proud Cougar defense that featured future NFL star cornerback James Hasty, shocking the hometown crowd into total silence. Card running back Jon Volpe, starting for an injured Brad Muster, rushes 26 times for 105 yards and scores three TDs. The Stanford defense keeps the Cougars completely off the board after the first quarter.

1986: Stanford 42, Washington State 12 @ Stanford Stadium

  1. Stanford senior QB John Paye (a 2007 inductee into the Stanford Athletic Hall of Fame) hits flanker Jeff James, standing all alone in the end zone for a 17-yard touchdown with 3:57 left in the first quarter to give the Cardinal a 14-0 lead.
  2. With 1:26 left before intermission, Paye strikes "Paye-dirt" on a seven-yard QB scramble for his second rushing touchdown of the game, his only two-rushing-touchdown performance of his career, giving the Cardinal a 28-0 lead at halftime.

In the final home game of the 1986 Gator Bowl season, Stanford's senior running back sensation and eventual Stanford Hall of Famer Brad Muster rambles for 190 yards on a workmanlike 37 carries (plus six receptions for another 93 yards!) and scored two TDs, leading the Cardinal to a season-high point total and more than 500 yards of offense. Stanford leads the first down totals 20-2 at the end of the first half! In all, LSJU posts 33 first downs to WSU's 11 and 292 yards rushing to the Cougars' 60. Still big props to Wazzou's human tackling machine Brian Forde for recording 24 stops that day in a hopeless cause!  It was the final season for Cougar coach Jim Walden, after which he left town for Iowa State.

1984: Washington State 49, Stanford 42 @ Stanford Stadium (most combined points in series history)

Probably the most miserable meltdown in Stanford history. Please don't show this recap to small children.

  1. Stanford lace-kicker Mark Harmon boots a 53-yard field goal to give Stanford a 6-0 lead with 12:20 left in the first half.
  2. QB Fred Buckley finds redshirt sophomore flanker Jeff James for a 39-yard touchdown with 6:49 left in the second quarter to give the Cardinal a 13-0 lead.
  3. With 4:12 remaining in the first half, Stanford redshirt junior running back Kevin Scott breaks free on a 47-yard "back-atcha" touchdown romp right after WSU's star back Ruben Mayes scores on a 53-yard run. Buckley hits Emile "Dirty" Harry for the two-point conversion)
  4. "K-Scott" takes off again, scoring on a 70-yard TD run to extend the lead to 42-14 with just 5:38 left in the third quarter.
  5. The rest is simply too painful for me to re-live (Mayes scores four of WSU's five straight TDs that rip this game out of Cardinal hearts.

A great start goes terribly wrong. Stanford running back Kevin Scott goes wild with 174 yards on just 15 carries and scores three TDs and Stanford build a 42-14 lead deep into the third quarter before Ruben Mayes, the 1984 Pac-10 Offensive Player of the Year (and the WSU Offensive Player of the Decade!), goes positively "pigskin postal" on us with 216 yards rushing and five touchdowns, including a 53-yard TD pass from QB and future Washington Redskins star and 1992 Super Bowl MVP Mark Rypien. WSU rallies from not one, but two 28-point third quarter deficits in one of the biggest comebacks in college football history. Three INTs by WSU's Ron Collins didn't help the Cardinal cause.

1982: Stanford 31, Washington State 26 @ Martin Stadium in Pullman, WA (Card's eighth-straight win in series)

  1. Sir John of Elway™ hits banged-up running back Vincent "The Love Bug" White on an 11-yard TD pass with 9:38 left in the first quarter.
  2. Senior running back Mike Dotterer scores from four yards out to win the game for the Cardinal with just 22 seconds left.

A rare sub-par passing day for Stanford's John Elway as the All-American passes for just 85 yards, thanks in large part to a ridiculous seven drops. Senior running back Mike Dotterer (#24), a 2006 inductee into the Stanford Athletic Hall of Fame, steps up and fills in for the injured White and carries 24 times for a career-high 155 yards rushing and two TDs and catches a pass for a third TD. WSU runs up 240 yards on the ground, but the Cardinal counters with 246 of its own. A final fourth quarter scoring drive by the Cardinal, highlighted by Dotterer's 51 yards on seven rushes, is the difference in this nail-biter.

1980: Stanford 48, Washington State 34 - October 25, 1980 @ Martin Stadium in Pullman, WA 

  1. Stanford QB John Elway hits senior flanker Kenny Margerum for a 12-yard TD pass to open the scoring with 10:47 left in the first quarter.
  2. Elway to Margerum again from eight yards out, two-point conversion pass to Darrin Nelson makes up for PAT block on the first TD)
  3. Elway finds split end Andre Tyler for a one-yard scoring pass with 10:34 left in the first half, giving Stanford a 20-3 lead.
  4. Elway hits junior tailback Nelson for a 44-yard TD pass and a 27-10 lead with 7:37 left in the first half.
  5. Elway to Nelson again for a 24-yard TD pass with 13:19 left in the game.
  6. Elway breaks a 27-27 tie, scoring on a one-yard keeper with 2:05 left in the third quarter.
  7. Sophomore tailback Vincent White puts the game away, running it in from 19 yards out for the final score with 3:14 left in the game.

In one of his most outstanding performances, Nelson produces a mind-boggling 202 yards rushing on 21 carries and scores two TDs. He also catches another 11 passes for 167 yards and two more TDs. Nelson sets the Pac-10 record with 369 all-purpose yards, which would last for a decade until Stanford's Glyn Milburn has 379 in his phenomenal 1990 Big Game performance. John Elway, just a sophomore, throws for 379 yards and five TDs. Uh, he was very good in case you don't recall.

Nelson's own head coach, Paul Wiggin, who played with Jim Brown in the NFL, says "I can say without a doubt, that this is the finest individual performance I have ever seen."

WSU's somewhat redundant QB Samoa Samoa does pretty well in the loss, posting a career-high 340 yards of total offense, the only time he ever went over 300 for the Cougars.

1978: Stanford 43, Washington State 27 @ Martin Stadium in Pullman, WA

  1. Stanford sophomore Darrin Nelson scores on a 23-yard pass from fifth-year senior Steve Dils with 11:49 left in the opening quarter.
  2. Dils finds sophomore flanker Ken Margerum for 29-yard TD pass with 3:17 left in the first quarter.
  3. Nelson scores on a 19-yard run to give Stanford a 27-7 lead with 9:21 left in the first half.
  4. Dils hits split end Andre Tyler with a 33-yard TD strike.
  5. Dils hooks up with tight end Pat Bowe for an 18-yard touchdown reception with 6:06 left in the third quarter.
  6. Dils to Nelson for a 22-yard touchdown with 4:01 left in the third quarter, Dils' fifth TD pass of the game!

Second-year head coach Bill Walsh and his Stanford Cardinal get their first "Pac-10" win as what would much later be known as the "West Coast Offense" puts up an impressive 338-yards in the opening half. Stanford quarterback Steve Dils, a Stanford Athletic Hall of Famer, out-duels the Cougars' star QB Jack Thompson, "the Throwin' Samoan." Thompson would finish 9th in the 1978 Heisman race. Steve Dils, the 1978 NCAA passing champion, ends up setting Stanford and Pac-10 passing and total offense records with 430 yards passing, 438 total yards, and a conference record-tying five TDs. Darrin Nelson, just a sophomore, breaks the Stanford career rushing mark, just seven games into his second season. Wow.

1977: Stanford 31, Washington State 29 @ Stanford Stadium

  1. Stanford QB Guy Benjamin hits star senior flanker James Lofton for a 14-yard TD score with 12:14 left in the second quarter, giving Stanford a 14-7 lead.
  2. Benjamin hits senior split end Bill Kellar for a 23-yard TD
  3. Benjamin to Lofton for another TD, this one from 12 yards out with 10:25 left in the contest.
  4. Lofton, playing defensive back for late-game insurance, intercepts a last-ditch "Hail Mary" pass by WSU QB Jack Thompson to end the game.

Bill Walsh and his short-passing game help Stanford win this shoot-out with Jack "The Throwin' Samoan" Thompson of WSU. Benjamin, who entered the game as the nation's leading passer throws for 330 yards and three TDs. Future NFL Hall of Fame wide receiver Lofton would later be selected #6 overall in the 1978 NDF draft.

Want to guess who logged 16 tackles for the Stanford defense on this day? You are correct: Stanford's all-conference middle linebacker Gordy Ceresino. About an average day for Mr. Ceresino.

1976: Stanford 22, Washington State 16 @ Martin Stadium, Pullman, WA

  1. Sophomore fullback Phil Francis barrels over from one yard out to give the visiting Cardinal a 7-6 lead with 4:41 remaining in the first half.
  2. Stanford junior halfback Gary Lynn snares a 27-yard TD pass from junior quarterback Guy Benjamin with 13:40 left in the fourth quarter to give Stanford a 16-9 lead.
  3. Lynn goes over from one yard out to break a 16-16 tie with 29 seconds left in the game.

The Stanford defense gives up an appalling 470 yards, but Stanford's tough-as-nail fullback Francis racks up 135 yards on 28 carries and scores a TD and Gary Lynn's TD in the final minute give the Cardinal a thrilling win in a tight finish in Pullman.

1975: Stanford 54, Washington State 14 @ Stanford Stadium

  1. Stanford's junior QB Mike Cordova hooks up with junior running back and future dentist Ron Inge for an 11-yard TD with 6:17 left in the first quarter.
  2. Inge busts loose for a 77-yard TD run to give the Cardinal a 14-0 lead with 7:31 left in the first quarter.
  3. Cordova finds senior Billy Singler for a 25-yard TD pass with 1:55 left in the first half.
  4. Ron Inge again, this time from 5 yards out for his third TD of the game with 8:41 left in the third quarter.
  5. Cordova runs it in himself from 16 yards out for a 35-7 lead with 6:17 left in the third quarter.
  6. Sophomore QB Guy Benjamin comes in and hits future Cowboy Tony Hill for a 29-yard TD pass with 12:25 left in the fourth quarter
  7. Sophomore back-up running back Gary Lynn breaks free on a 53-yard TD run with 7:39 left in the final quarter.
  8. With 3:55 remaining, it is Lynn again from nine yards out to finish the scoring…mercifully.

In front of 35,000, it was "all Stanford, all the time." Running back Ron Inge has a career day, racking up 153 yards on just nine carries and scoring three TDs. The great Tony Hill has 4 catches for 101 yards and a TD. Cougar QB Chuck Lyon is picked off four times, which always helps the cause.

1974: Stanford 20, Washington State 18 @ Martin Stadium in Pullman, WA

  1. Stanford sophomore QB Mike Cordova (#16) finds senior tight end Brad Williams (#88) on a three-yard TD toss with 11:17 left in the first quarter to open the scoring.
  2. Junior place-kicker Mike Langford (#19) drills a 47-yard field goal with 1:57 left in the third quarter to make it 13-6 for Stanford
  3. Cordova again, this time passing to senior quarterback-turned wide receiver Eric Test (#18) for a 12-yard score.

The Cardinal almost fumbles away a 20-6 fourth quarter lead, but hangs on in front of just 22,000 in Pullman. A highlight for WSU is Joe Danelo's soaring 55-yard field goal.

1973: Stanford 45, Washington State 14 @ Stanford Stadium

  1. Following his own 25-yard scramble, Card senior QB Mike Boryla (#12) passes five yards to junior running back Scott Laidlaw for the opening score with 12:07 left in the first quarter.
  2. On the next possession, junior wide receiver Eric Test takes a reverse handoff from Laidlaw and hits redshirt sophomore wide receiver Billy Singler for a 47-yard gain to the Cougar eight, Stanford's longest gain of the season to that point. Boryla immediately finds Test behind Cougar corner Robin Sinclair in the right corner of the end zone for an eight-yard TD with 9:33 left in the opening quarter.
  3. After a WSU fumble is recovered by First Team All-Coast inside linebacker Gordy "Right Way" Riegel, Boryla hits Billy Singler (#21) with a 22-yard TD pass with 4:21 left in the first half to give the Cardinal a 21-0 lead.
  4. After an eight-yard run by senior fullback Doug Jena on fourth and two at the Cougar 15, Boryla links up with Test again, this time for seven yards with 11:46 left in the third quarter, giving the Indians a 28-0 lead.
  5. Boryla gets his school record-setting fifth TD pass, throwing 15 yards to senior wide receiver Reggie Ishman (#43) with 5:36 left in the third quarter.
  6. Following a terrific 22-yard punt return from crowd favorite and senior return specialist Craig Zaltosky, aided by a nice Drew Palin block, back-up QB Dave Ottmar (#19) finds Singler for an 11-yard TD and a 42-0 lead. Take that, Sweeny!
  7. Showing Stanford's unhappiness with WSU's sportsmanship in the previous year, Christiansen, with his team already ahead 42-14, has his senior kicker Rod Garcia line up and drill a 49-yard field goal with seven seconds left in the game. Nice!

A highly emotional game for second-year head Coach Jack Christiansen. In the Stanford locker room, "Coach Chris" tacks up quotes from WSU coach Jim Sweeny saying "If we played Stanford every week, I'd be coach of the year!" The rout was quickly on as Stanford's Mike Boryla throws a school-record five TD passes against the self-proclaimed "best secondary in college football", thoroughly impressing a strong home crowd of 48,000 with a balanced attach that produces 492 yards of total offense. Running back Laidlaw set the tone carrying most of the load on an opening drive that covered 68 yards in five plays, primarily running the "39 pitch" to counter the WSU blitz. On the day, Laidlaw rushes 18 times for 130 yards and grabs a five-yard TD pass for the game's first touchdown. Laidlaw had 85 yards in the first half alone, representing only three yards fewer than the entire Stanford team had managed in the first three games of the season! Boryla would be sacked just once after suffering ten sacks in the previous match-up with Washington State.

1972: Washington State 27, Stanford 13 @ Martin Stadium in Pullman, WA

  1. WSU QB Ty Paine scores on a four-yard run and hits receiver Brock Aynsley with an eight-yard TD toss as the Cougs get on the board early and often.
  2. After WSU opens up a 17-0 lead, Stanford junior QB Mike Boryla brings the Cards roaring back on a 69-yard drive highlighted by a 30-yard sideline pass to senior flanker Eric Cross and a second sideline pattern completion to Cross for another 35 yards. Junior running back John Winesberry then runs around end for Stanford's first score.
  3. Boryla hits senior split end Miles Moore with a 55-yard bomb to bring the score to a respectable 17-13 deficit at the half.
  4. The game is tight in the second half until Wazoo's Steve Hamilton scores with 20 seconds left to ice the game.
  5. Adding insult to injury, Stanford fumbles and WSU kicks a "salt-in-the-wound-rubbing" 39-yard field goal on the final play of the game.

"The Curse of the Palouse" strikes again as Stanford quarterback Mike Boryla is sacked ten times for 72 yards of losses as Stanford's hopes for a third consecutive Rose Bowl go down in flames. Jack Christiansen's Stanford squad falls behind for the fourth consecutive week, this time digging a 17-0 hole from which it never recovers. Defensively, the Cardinal can't stop the Cougars' punishing ground gain, as WSU piles up 19 rushing first downs to the Cards' five. All this, despite fine effort from stud inside linebacker Gordy Riegel, who logs 21 total tackles, alongside 20 tackles each from fellow linebackers Jim Merlo and Pat Moore.

1971: Washington State 24, Stanford 23 @ Stanford Stadium

  1. Washington State QB Ty Paine hits Ike Nelson on a short slant-in pass, and Nelson breaks several tackles and turns it into a stunning 71-yard TD to shock the home crowd with 10:59 left in the second quarter.
  2. In one of the more exciting responses to a big play from an opponent in the history of Stanford football, junior split end Miles Moore (# 45) takes the ensuing kick-off and returns it nine yards before handing it off to sophomore John Winesberry (#26) on a reverse. Winesberry returns it another 88 yards for a 97-yard touchdown play!
  3. Place-kicker Rod Garcia extends Stanford's lead to 20-14 after a drive featuring a diving catch by Winesberry of a 42-yard pass from quarterback Don Bunce.
  4. Wazzou puts together a back-breaking 14-play 75-yard two-minute drive, culminating in a game-winning 27-yard Don Sweet field goal as the clock struck 0:00.

One of the more shocking upsets in Stanford history. The defending Rose Bowl champion Stanford, coming off a huge win against USC, overlooks Washington State and gets knocked off at home in a game that makes the Cougars entire season. Stanford was heavily favored, so much so that the coaching staff unwisely gave the team two days off from practice. Miffed, fired up WSU players dig deep and play "the game of their lives" amassing 459 yards of offense against the defending conference champions. Coug kicker Don Sweet boots a game-winning 27-yard field goal on the game's final play. Ouch!

1970: Stanford 63, Washington State 16 (most points ever scored by one team in series) Played at Spokane, WA since Rogers Field in Pullman had been destroyed in an arson fire

  1. With 4:50 left in the first quarter, Stanford senior strong safety Jack Schultz (#44) picks off WSU's Ty Paine and returns it 46 yards down the sideline for a TD to give the Indians a 10-0 lead.
  2. Seven seconds into the second quarter, Stanford senior QB and 1970 Heisman Trophy-winner Jim Plunkett (#16) gives his team a 17-0 lead, racing 39 yards on a quarterback option for the longest TD run of his incredible career.
  3. With 12:30 left in the second quarter, Plunkett tosses five yards to FB Hillary Shockley for another TD.
  4. With 10:12 left in the first half, QB Plunkett hits Randy "The Rabbit" Vataha for a 96-yard touchdown, allowing Plunkett to shatter the NCAA's all-time record for career total offense. 30-0 Stanford.
  5. Just twenty seconds into the second half, Stanford junior halfback Jackie Brown breaks through the line and races 66 yards up the middle for a TD
  6. On his only carry of the day, Stanford sophomore Eric Cross tears off a 25-yard run for another TD with 9:56 left in the third quarter to make the score 50-8. Drunken WSU fan Terry Smith runs onto the field to blindside the unsuspecting Cross near the goal line. The referees award a Stanford touchdown and Smith is congratulated... by the Spokane police. WSU cheerleaders pass the hat around in the stands collecting bail money. Indians coach John Ralston calls it "the hardest hit of the day." Nice one, coach!.
  7. Back-up QB Jesse Freitas (a future transfer to San Diego State) connects with junior fullback Jim Kehl on a 70-yard pass, followed by a one-yard TD run by sophomore running back Reggie Sanderson. Stanford 56, WSU 16.
  8. Sanderson takes off on a thrilling 51-yard run, and then takes the ball in for a touchdown from three yards out to finish Stanford's scoring for the day at 63.

WSU coach Jim Sweeney's team played the 1970 season, not in WSU's traditional Crimson and Gray uniforms, but in unbelievably ugly fire engine red uniforms and helmets with white and black trim. No wonder they got smoked!

1969: Stanford 49, Washington State 0 @ Stanford Stadium (largest winning margin in series history to date)

  1. A perfect lead pass from junior Indian quarterback Jim Plunkett hits Jack Lasater in stride for a 37-yard touchdown with 2:56 left in the first quarter.
  2. Stanford senior linebacker Don Parish picks off Cougar QB Gary Bergan and returns it 23 yards for a TD with 2:11 left in the first half, giving the Indians a 21-0 halftime lead.
  3. Senior defensive back Rich Keller intercepts another Bergan pass and takes it to the house for a 44-yard touchdown return with 7:47 left in the third quarter.
  4. Stanford back-up QB Don Bunce takes over for Plunkett in the third quarter and rushes 13 times for a game-high 129 yards, including a 43-yard quarterback keeper down the left sideline for a TD with 13 seconds left in the third quarter.

Stanford's second shutout of the year, the Indian defense held the Cougars to just 108 total yards, including just 18 passing yards. The Cougars struggled to a 1-9 season. Desperate to recover, Cougar Coach Jim Sweeney dipped into the junior college ranks, bringing in 16 transfers to rebuild his program for 1970 and form a recruiting strategy that would continue for decades to follow.

1968: Stanford 21, Washington State 21 - October 19, 1968 at Joe Albi Stadium in Spokane, WA (the only tie in LSJU-WSU series history)

1. Stanford QB Jim Plunkett's 11-yard TD strike to WR Gene Washington with 6:18 left in the game salvages a tie.

This one took place during the first year of the renamed Pacific 8 Conference and was the first season for new WSU head coach Jim "The Smilin' Irishman" Sweeney.

On an overcast day in front of just 17,000 fans, heavily-favored, but injured-plagued Stanford showed the effects from an emotionally draining 27-24 loss to USC the week before when O.J. Simpson had rushed 47 times for 220 yards. Injuries to wide receiver Jack Lasater and tight end Bob Moore cast a dark cloud on an already overcast afternoon in Spokane. Stanford's junior halfback Bubba Brown rushes for 110 yards on 22 carries while WR Gene Washington has 8 catches for 110 yards and the one TD.

1967: Stanford 31, Washington State 10 @ Stanford Stadium

(LSJU snaps an eight-game WSU winning streak in series)

  1. Stanford QB Chuck Williams hits Gene Washington at the goal line for a seven-yard TD with 40 seconds left in the first half, tying the game at 10-10 at the half.
  2. With 6:02 left in the third quarter, senior fullback Jack "Hugga" Root scores from one yard out to give Stanford a 17-10 lead.
  3. Williams hits junior end Bruce "Mama" Cass on a slant pattern for a ten-yard touchdown and a 24-10 lead with 2:02 left in the third quarter.
  4. With just a minute left in the game, Stanford halfback Nate Kirtman returns a punt 39 yards down the right sideline to the WSU 14 and a personal foul moves the ball to the Cougar seven. On the next play, QB Chuck Williams hits halfback Bill Shoemaker for a seven-yard TD in the left corner of the end zone for a 31-10 lead with 40 seconds left in the contest.

After falling behind early 10-0, the Indians rally for 31 unanswered points behind three TD passes from Chuck Williams. The Indian defends holds WSU to just 187 yards and 8 first downs for the game. WSU coach Bert Clark would be fired at the end of a disappointing 2-8 season.

1964: Washington State 29, Stanford 23 - Season-opener at Joe Albi Stadium in Spokane, WA

  1. Indians' place-kicker Braden Beck nails 52-yard field goal in the first quarter
  2. Indian QB Terry DeSylvia takes a keep around the right side for an eight-yard TD to give Stanford a 20-13 lead with 11:43 left in the third quarter.
  3. WSU appears to tie the game at 23 on a Larry Eilmes TD run from the one, but Cougar QB Tom Roth's two-point conversion pass goes incomplete, leaving the Indians with a 23-22 lead.
  4. On 2nd & 12 from the Stanford 45, DeSylvia suffers an amazing fourth quarter interception by WSU's First Team All-American defensive back Clancy Williams (with a Stanford personal foul tacked on) setting up a game-winning one-yard touchdown sneak by Cougar QB Roth, giving WSU's Bert Clark a big win in his Cougar head coaching debut.

A close game all the way is taken by the Cougars on a clutch big-play interception by their defensive star Clancy Williams, one of the last great two-way players at Washington State and the school's Defensive Player of the Decade of the 1960s.

1963: Washington State 32, Stanford 15 @ Stanford Stadium

  1. On first and goal from the WSU 10, Stanford sophomore QB Don Cook finds sure-handed junior end Bob Howard with a TD pass, capping an 11-play, 88-yard drive.
  2. On first and goal from the Cougar one, junior right halfback Dick Ragsdale plunges over for Stanford's second touchdown of the day. Ragsdale then takes a pitchout for the two-point conversion.

This game was played the Saturday before the Kennedy assassination. The Indians trailed 18-0 at halftime and could not run effectively against a tough Cougar defense. The WSU ground game ran generated 265 yards and the Cougars managed 17 rushing first downs to Stanford's 3.

1960: Washington State 15, Stanford 14 @ Memorial Stadium in Spokane, WA

  1. Stanford QB Dick Norman hits fullback Skip Face from 11 yards out for the first score of the game with 4:02 left in the opening quarter.
  2. Stanford punter Gary Craig drops a terrific punt on the Cougar one-yard-line. Backed up on their own two, WSU quick-kicks a punt on 3rd and 9 to the Stanford 47, but Craig returns it 24 yards.
  3. On 4th down from the WSU two, Indian running back Gil Dowd rolls over right guard for a TD and a 14-0 Indian lead at intermission.
  4. Cougar star QB Mel Melin rolls out and hits his wide receiver Schenck for a 17-yard TD twenty seconds into the fourth quarter. Star running back and triple threat Keith "The Moose of the Palouse" Lincoln busts over for the two-point conversion.
  5. On the ensuing series, Stanford QB Dick Norman's third-down pass is intercepted by Cougar linebacker (and future CFL star) Garner Ekstran at the Stanford 40 and Ekstran returns it for what ends up being the game-winning touchdown with 12:53 seconds left in the fourth quarter.
  6. Face's field goal attempt from the WSU 37 is wide. WSU takes over, but can't move the ball and has to punt.
  7. With the game on the line, Stanford drives to the WSU 25, but Norman's pass is picked off by Hoien at the center of the line. Melin keeps it three times running out the clock. Game over. "Cougs win, Cougs win, Cougs win!"

The Indians could not hold a 14-0 lead at the end of three quarters as the hometown heroes rallied and held on for a startling 15-14 comeback, due principally to two critical fourth-quarter interceptions of Stanford's star QB Dick Norman. This was actually a non-conference game since the 43-year-old Pacific Coast Conference had been disbanded right before the 1959 season and would not be reconstituted as the Pacific 8 Conference for another several years. The Cougars' Third Team All-American receiver, sophomore Hugh Campbell, aka "The Phantom of the Palouse", would later star for the Saskatchewan Roughriders of the Canadian Football League and later coach the Edmonton Eskimos to five straight Gray Cup championships.

1958: Washington State 40, Stanford 6 @ Rogers Field in Pullman, WA

Not a lot went well this day for the Indians. The lone score came on the recovery of a Cougar fumble by defensive tackle Phil Burkland.

The Cougars' ace quarterback Bob Newman made life tough on the Indians, but the unquestioned highlight was the emotional return of Washington State's do-everything Bill Steiger, a fifth-year senior who had missed the entire 1957 season after breaking his neck in a tragic swimming accident. Steiger, a Second Team All-American during the 1956 season before his accident, was a superb running back and receiver, a ferocious outside linebacker and defensive end, and was even a fine punter. Against the Indians, Steiger scored the Cougars first touchdown of the 1958 season (after a Card fumble on the opening kick-off) on the way to a 40-6 Cougar romp.

New Stanford head coach "Cactus Jack" Curtice endures a rough start to his initial campaign trying to replace Chuck Tayor. Curtice's team would lose its first three games of the 1958 season by a combined total of 98-13, finishing a disappointing 2-8 on the year. At least we threw the ball downfield: Stanford QBs Bob Nicolet and sophomore standout Dick Norman would each finish in the nation's top ten in passing statistics for 1958.

1957: Washington State 21, Stanford 18 @ Stanford Stadium

  1. In the first quarter, Al Harrington scores to cap a 12-play, 56-yard drive, but the PAT fails.
  2. Still in the first quarter, Harrington scores again to give Stanford a 12-0 lead since the PAT fails once again.
  3. Stanford tackle John Kidd recovers a fumble at the Cougar 27 and after five plays, Chuck Shea scores a seven-yard TD. A two-point attempt fails on a completed pass from QB Jack Douglas to Rick McMillen that ends up just short of the goal line. Still, Stanford enjoys an 18-0 lead at intermission.
  4. WSU opens the third quarter with an 11-play, 81-yard scoring drive.
  5. Still enjoying an 18-7 lead with less than three and a half minutes remaining in the game, Stanford fans are suddenly shocked by an 87-yard pass play for a touchdown (Bob Newman to Jack Fanning) as the lead narrows to 18-14.
  6. A fired up Cougar kick coverage team recovers an onside kick at the Stanford 47.
  7. Smelling blood in air, the Cougars score five plays later to take a 21-18 lead with just 44 seconds left in the game. Ouch!

Considered one of the games of the entire decade of the 1950s…by Cougar fans. A truly incredible comeback win - unfortunately, not ours! To Stanford, it was a heart-breaking, demoralizing, inexcusable home loss for Chuck Taylor's Indian squad during an otherwise decent 6-4 1957 season down on the Farm. Three missed extra points represented the losing margin.

1956: Stanford 40, Washington State College 26 - Season Opener at Rogers Field in Pullman, WA

  1. Less than five minutes into the first quarter, Lou Valli's 44-yard punt return to the WSC 27 sets up the first Stanford score.

Coach Jim "Suds" Sutherland's boys get soaked at home as WSC fumbles four times. Spurning the "jinx of the Palouse country", Stanford scores on its first four possessions and out-rushes the Cougars 151-77. Three Indians passers, Brodie, Douglas and Taylor, combine for 259 yards in the air and spark the Big Red Machine to a 26-0 halftime lead halfway through the second quarter as the bench is cleared. Strong receiving efforts are produced by Stanford's Gordon Young, Gary Van Galder, and Carl Isaacs.

1953: Stanford 48, Washington State College 19 @ Stanford Stadium

  1. The Indians score on a nine-yard pass from Stanford quarterback Bobby Garrett to towering end John Steinberg, who leaps high in the air to make the grab.
  2. In the third quarter, it is Stanford's Garrett again to Steinberg, this time for a 45-yard TD!
  3. In the final quarter, Jack Gebert tosses a TD pass to Al Napolean
  4. Don Kafka scores on a six-yard bootleg for the Indians final score.

In what was the most lop-sided game in the series to that point, Stanford scores on its first possession and never looks back, scoring almost at will against an undermanned "Wazoo Crew." The Cougars managed three late TDs against Stanford's second- and third-stringers. Bobby Garrett, a first-team All-American in 1953, would be the #1 pick in the 1954 NFL draft. He was the last Stanford player to play all 60 minutes in a game, accomplishing the feat five times in 1953.

1952: Stanford 14, Washington State College 13 @ Rogers Field in Pullman, WA

  1. On 4th and six, Garrett passes to Sam Morley for a TD and the Indians build a 14-0 lead at intermission.

The Indians had not won in Pullman since coach Chuck Taylor was playing guard for Stanford's Wow Boys in the early 1940s! Stanford overcomes eight fumbles, builds a 14-0 halftime lead and manages to squeak by the Cougars on the passing of QB Bobby Garrett to Sam Morely and Ron Cook. WSU comes out of the locker room fired up and scores two TDs in the first eight minutes of the third quarter, but Dick Monteith's block of the Cougars' second PAT attempt is the difference in the closest game of the 1952 season.

1951: Stanford 21, Washington State College 13 @ Stanford Stadium

With help from quarterback Gary Kerkorian and the great Bob Mathias, halfback Harry Hugasian scores two touchdowns and All-American end Bill McColl provides the third as the Rose Bowl-minded Indians produce a score in each of the first three quarters of the game and build an insurmountable 21-0 lead. The Indian defense, led by tough guys Dick Horn, Chuck Essegian, Jack Rye, and Dave Castellucci, does not allow a point until the final quarter. WSU's Ed Barker has 10 receptions to help keep it close.

1950: Stanford 28, Washington State College 18 @ Rogers Field in Pullman, WA

  1. Stanford QB Gary Kerkorian passes 33 yards to end Bill McColl, who fakes a couple of Cougar defenders, advances eight yards downfield and then deftly laterals to teammate Boyd Benson, who takes it 25 more yards for a Stanford touchdown.

In front of the smallest crowd it would see in the 1950 season, WSC's QB Bob Gambold throws two TD passes in the opening quarter to put a scare into Stanford. Two-way star Gary Kerkorian gets Stanford back on track with a pass interception, and a fumble recovery and engineers two scoring drives. He also kicks the PATs. The Indians rush for 237 yards.

1946: Stanford 27, Washington State College 26 @ Stanford Stadium

In the first season back in action following WWII, the Indians win a thriller.

  1. The Big Red Machine leads 21-20 going into the fourth quarter after scores from Stanford fullback Don Zappettini and all-Coast fullback and team captain Lloyd Merriman.
  2. In a shocking surprise, Cougar halfback Don Paul shoots around end for what appears to be the game-winning touchdown for WSC.
  3. But no! After a final heroic drive, QB Ainslie Bell's touchdown pass to halfback Bob Anderson with less than two minutes left in the game, Anderson's second TD on the day, closes the door on the Cougars.

1940: Stanford 26, Washington State College 14 @ Rogers Field, Pullman, WA

  1. On third down from its own 36, WSU completes a forward lateral to move the ball 47 yards to the Stanford 17. A Washington State wingback takes it in from the 16 for the game's initial score.
  2. Following a 60-yard punt by Stanford's Norm Standlee, WSC wingback Felix Fletcher, playing right half, sweeps left and takes a reverse hand-off from Sexton after Sexton fakes to star Billy Sewall and follows pulling left guard Joe Englmann into the end zone for a 16-yard score with just four minutes gone in the first quarter. This puts the Cougars up 7-0, the first time Stanford has trailed in the first four games of the 1940 season.
  3. After Frankie Albert intercepts a pass at the Indians' 38, Stanford takes over and halfback Pete Kmetovic immediately races 52 yards to the Cougar 10 yard line. Norm "The Big Chief" Standlee then sprints around the left end untouched to tie the score at 7-7 with three minutes left in the opening quarter. 2 plays, 62 yards. Nice drive. Kmetovic holds as Albert boots the PAT.
  4. After Milt Vucinich hits Clem Tomerlin with a 27-yard pass play, 5'9" junior lefty quarterback Albert finds 5'7" Eric "Hoot" Armstrong, who had replaced star halfback Hugh Gallarneau, in the corner of the end zone for a 27-yard touchdown pass to take a 14-7 lead into intermission.
  5. In the third quarter and after a Standlee 25-yard gallop to the Washington State 33, unanimous 1940 All-American Albert drops back on first down and hooks up with end Fred Meyer, who makes an outstanding catch at the goal line for an Indian touchdown and a 20-7 lead.
  6. Second Team All-Coast center and rugged defensive end Vic Lindskog sticks WSC halfback Akins, nearly breaking him in two, and recovers an ensuing fumble at the WSC 30. Kmetovic takes a lateral toss from Albert and makes it to the one-foot-line. Albert sneaks it over from the one for a 26-7 lead.
  7. After WSU scores on a 45-yard drive, they mount one final effort to get back in the game, but Stanford's Thor "Pete" Peterson intercepts Sewall's last desperation attempt at the Stanford 32.

A packed homecoming crowd of 24,000 came to see Clark Shaughnessy's unbeaten, untied, and AP #10-ranked "Wow Boys" face off against the undefeated Cougars, which had already tied defending conference champion USC and beaten the Cal Bears. Coached by the legendary Babe Hollingberry, WSC scored first and actually out-gained the Indians in first downs and rushing yardage, but the "White Ghosts", as the Stanford players were referred to in the media, proved too fast for the lonesome Cougars. Stanford had come out in all-white visitors uniforms because the WSU squad was wearing red.

Despite suffering four interceptions at the hands of the swarming Stanford defense, Cougar QB Billy Sewall would actually end up leading the nation in passing statistics in 1940. Albert and his Wow Boys would go on to win the conference and defeat Nebraska in the 1941 Rose Bowl. An amazing nine members of the Wow Boys would make it on to the AP's three-deep All-Coast teams. Shaughnessy would be named national Coach of the Year.

1938: Stanford 8, Washington State College 0 @ Stanford Stadium

One of the few highlights in a disappointing 3-6 1938 season as Tiny Thornhill's squad suffered from a rash of injuries. Losses to USC, UCLA, Oregon and Cal were all decided by less than a touchdown. The shutout of the Cougars was nice to get in before the debacle of the 1939 season, as Thornhill's seven-year run as head coach on the Farm would come to an end and Clark Shaughnessy, the "Wizard of the T-Formation", would bring his act out from Chicago and bring gridiron glory to Palo Alto in 1940.

1937: Stanford 23, Washington State College 0 @ Stanford Stadium

  1. After a fumble recovery by Neil Rasmussen, Stanford halfback Pete Fay runs around left end for a 13-yard touchdown and a 7-0 lead.
  2. In the third quarter, Pete Zager blocks a Cougar punt and Card captain Grant Stone, a unanimous All-Coast selection at end, picks it up and carries it five yards into the end zone for a TD.
  3. Late in the game, Stanford halfback Jimmy Coffis slips through left tackle and races 67 yards for the final score.

In only the second meeting of the two schools, Stanford head coach "Tiny" Thornhill's 3-2-1 "Big Red Machine" crushes the hapless Cougars the week after the Cardinal's 7-6 road victory over USC. Thornhill starts his entire second team to open the game. The 1937 Stanford team totals just 68 points in its nine games, but holds its opponents to just 53.

If the Cardinal and Cougs ever make it to a late season match-up with the Rose Bowl on the line, we promise to fill in the games we missed.

Sources: Palo Alto Times, San Francisco Examiner, The Color of Life is Red by Don Liebendorfer, Wow Boys by Cyclone Covey, The Stanford Wow Boys by Robert T. Dofflemyer, game programs, and various Stanford University press guides and news releases.

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