Dawgman.com Predictions

Washington takes its first road trip of the season, a 2 hour flight south to a place they call "The Farm". Stanford and Washington are tied for first place and the winner of this contest will position themselves in the driver's seat for the conference race. Here is what the staff thinks will go down on Saturday night in Palo Alto, California.

Derek Johnson – published author: In the bizarro world we live in, odds makers have Stanford as a healthy favorite to beat Washington. It should be an interesting and competitive game. I guess the main question is: how will the Huskies perform when the crowd isn't supporting them? I've got to think as evenly matched as these teams are, Jake Locker will be the difference.

Washington 27, Stanford 20

Scott Eklund – recruiting expert: After coming off arguably the biggest win in school history, Washington is on the verge of something special. I realize this sounds pretty ludicrous seeing as what the Huskies have been through the past five or six years, but what they can't afford is to have a let down or look past Stanford this Saturday. Gone will be the accolades from the national media, gone will be their ranking in the top 25 and gone will be the momentum they've built up with the fan base as well as within themselves. The Huskies must pressure redshirt freshman QB Andrew Luck. They have to confuse him and keep him from getting comfortable in the pocket. They also must bottle up RB Toby Gerhart as well as WR Chris Owusu who is a dangerous return man. On offense, QB Jake Locker just needs to be smart with the ball. Washington should be able to put up yards and points against the Cardinal, so I see this as possibly being a shootout, with Washington winning in the end.

Washington 38 - Stanford 34

Pat Thrapp – numbers guy: Ok I am now a firm believer. That USC game was very impressive. I have bought into the camp of 'Expect to win'. I always wanted the team to win, but being a realist I wasn't yet sold. This Stanford game might be close. I heard Sark on his Tuesday radio show from Anthony's say that Stanford is another of those physical teams. They certainly have a good running back. I expect if both teams are physical that the score won't go much over 20 points for either team. That said, DAWGs win on the road.

Washington 23 - Stanford 17

Aaron Beach – hoops guy: I have egg on my face this week for feeling an upset coming and instead predicting a 3-point USC victory. This week I will not make that mistake again. The Dawgs still do not match up with the more physical lines in the Pac-10 either offensively or defensively, but they do enough things well to keep UW in the game. For the rest of the season I am going to approach each game prediction with the following mindset: Unless the other team has great players at most of the skilled positions and a better offensive and defensive line than the Dawgs, then I am likely predicting a Husky victory based solely on how much better Jake Locker is than the rest of the players on the field, especially the opposing QB. In this case, I think UW can run the ball well enough to manage the clock combined with Jakes efficient passing ability. I also think Stanford doesn't have enough team speed to keep Locker from running more often, so I expect Jake to run for 40-50 yards and a touchdown, throw for 225 and 2 TD's, and dominate the game with continued adept game management skills. On the other side of the ball, I think the Dawgs will focus our game plan very similarly to the way they beat USC in the second half, by cramming the gaps with extra players and inviting freshman Andrew Luck to beat them through the air. I don't think he'll be able to do it, and I think they contain Toby Gerhart enough to limit Stanford to 20. Huskies crack the top 20????

UW 30 - Stanford 20

Molly Waldron – Dawgman.com Intern: Yeah, they're 2-1, but I have a hard time giving Stanford much credit for beating Washington State and San Jose State. The Cardinal may, however, start out fast and get ahead quick as they've done in the past. If they score some early touchdowns, the Huskies will have to stay focused, ignore the score and play a complete game. They've succeeded at this so far, and no doubt Sarkisian and his staff will adjust the game plan if needed. Sark's been preaching to his players not to forget the feeling of beating USC, but that practice and hard work is key to getting a repeat of that thrill. I think the Dawgs are taking this to heart. They should be able to match the Cardinal's speed and physicality and ultimately come out with the victory.

Washington 34 Stanford 24

Chris Fetters – Editor In Chief: At some point I'm going to have to go out on that limb and expect more out of a program that's turning quicker than the dial on my iPod. It's weird to think that going on the road for the first time could actually be a good thing for a team, but it just might be what the doctor ordered for the Huskies. They will be removed from the emotional scene of Saturday's crime, a thrilling 16-13 win over USC; their resolve will be tested by a Stanford team ready to show Washington they mean business and are intent on grabbing an early Pac-10 lead. But the Cardinal will see Jake Locker for two halves this year instead of one, and that alone should spell the difference. In talking with Doug Nussmeier and Nick Holt this week, there's just too many 'teachable moments' being had on Montlake not to envision this team taking the next step up. It won't be easy, and it'll probably even be a little bit of a shootout, but the Dawgs get it done on Saturday.

Washington 35 – Stanford 31

David Samek – Dawgman: Man I hope I call this week's game as close as I called last week's. Molly and I were the only ones that had it right, which makes me nervous that EVERYONE is picking the Huskies this week. Washington is a road underdog for good reason – it has been eons since they've won a game on the road. But this is a different team. They BELIEVE, they EXPECT, they WANT to win. They are well coached and you never got that feeling during the prior regime. This team looks prepared for what they are about to face. Saturday night will see two well coached teams and two fine young head coaches face each other. I am betting on Sarkisian, as he has done NOTHING to dispel my love of his play calling. He has called three gems, and those are his first three games as the head man. I'm impressed. Locker has looked amazing. If he keeps making the strides he's making, this will be the last year Husky fans will see him. I'm convinced of that. Jake will throw for a score, run for another, and Polk will go for another one in a tight one that is won once again by Erik Folk's leg.

Washington 24 – Stanford 23

Kim Grinolds – Business Operations: We love going to the bay area, but Stanford always haunts us as well. Every time We go there, first thing is to go down to about the 30 yard line, which is where I stood on that day Curtis Williams went down. I always take a minute. This is going to be an interesting game. Everybody wants to talk about Stanford's 235 pond running back Toby Gerhart and how he'll have a big day against Washington's D. Well, UW seemed to handle Charles Scott of LSU pretty well. If they can handle Scott with LSU's OL, I wouldn't worry too much about Gerhart and Stanford. At the end of the day it will come down to the QB's. Stanford's freshman vs. Jake Locker. My money's on Jake

UW 31 - Stanford 24

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