College Football
Preview
Stanford at Washington
When: 9:00 PM ET, Friday, September 30, 2016
Where: Husky Stadium, Seattle, Washington

Junior running back Christian McCaffrey ranks second in the nation in rushing yards per game but is somehow considered to be experiencing a down season as he leads No. 6 Stanford into a Pac-12 showdown at No. 9 Washington on Friday night. McCaffrey's spectacular 2015 campaign in which he rushed for 2,019 yards and finished second in the Heisman Trophy balloting has made his 145.3 rushing yards per game seem pedestrian but only San Diego State's Donnel Pumphrey (199.7) has a better average.

McCaffrey aims to help the Cardinal defeat the Huskies for the eighth time in the past nine meetings and Washington coach Chris Petersen is well aware of who will be the best player on the field. "He's great with the ball in his hands," Petersen told reporters of McCaffrey. "Unbelievable vision, extremely explosive, and maybe as patient as anybody I've seen. Whether he's returning kicks or handed the ball in the backfield, those characteristics just show up, and it's a unique combination." Both teams won their last seven games dating back to last season and the contest is the Huskies' opportunity to show they are for real and not unbeaten just because of a soft schedule. Stanford won 15 of its past 16 contests and matched the school record of seven consecutive Pac-12 road wins (2010-11).

TV: 9 p.m. ET, ESPN. LINE: Washington -2.5

ABOUT STANFORD (3-0, 2-0 Pac-12): McCaffrey rushed for 436 yards and leads the Cardinal in receiving (12 catches for 119 yards), which led frustrated coach David Shaw to say "when this kid doesn't get 300 yards of total offense, we say he got 'bottled up.'" Opponents are crowding the line to stop McCaffrey as senior quarterback Ryan Burns (395 yards, three touchdowns, two interceptions) hasn't displayed the ability to be a downfield passing threat despite throwing the go-ahead touchdown pass with 24 seconds left to beat UCLA on Saturday. The defense ranks eighth nationally in scoring defense at 12 points per game and junior defensive tackle Solomon Thomas was named Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week after returning a fumble 42 yards for a touchdown and also posting a sack against the Bruins.

ABOUT WASHINGTON (4-0, 1-0): Sophomore quarterback Jake Browning threw 14 touchdown passes against two interceptions this season while helping the Huskies rank 10th nationally in scoring offense at 45.8 points per game. Sophomore tailback Myles Gaskin has a team-leading 302 rushing yards but is being pushed by junior Lavon Coleman, who exploded for a career-best 181 yards on 11 carries in Saturday's 35-28 overtime victory over Arizona. Washington allowed a staggering 308 rushing yards to the Wildcats, which makes slowing McCaffrey seem like more of a challenge for a defense led by junior linebacker Azeem Victor (team-best 31 tackles) and junior safety Budda Baker (20 stops).

EXTRA POINTS

1. Stanford's recent dominance has allowed it to tie the series 41-41-4.

2. The Huskies are tied for the national lead in takeaways (13) and have committed only four turnovers.

3. Cardinal senior WR Francis Owusu (concussion) will sit out after being injured against UCLA.

PREDICTION: Stanford 23, Washington 17
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W‑L Strk PF PA Home Away Grass Turf Conf
Stanford 3-0 W3 25.0 12.0 2-0 1-0 3-0 0-0 2-0
Washington 4-0 W4 45.8 14.5 3-0 1-0 1-0 0-0 1-0
Last Meeting
Stanford Washington
Date Away Home Tot Rus Pas Tot Rus Pas
10/24/15 WASH 14 STAN 31 478 188 290 231 113 118
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Passing Player COMP % YDS TD INT
Stanford K. Hogan 70.8 290 2 1
Washington K. Carta-Samuels 42.9 118 0 0
Rushing Player CAR YDS AVG TD
Stanford C. McCaffrey 23 109 4.7 1
Washington M. Gaskin 18 108 6.0 1
Receiving Player REC YDS AVG TD
Stanford C. McCaffrey 5 112 22.4 1
Washington J. Mickens 3 41 13.7 0
Touchdowns Player TD
Stanford C. McCaffrey 2
Washington K. Carta-Samuels 1
Season
Passing Player COMP % YDS TD INT
Stanford R. Burns 62.1 402 3 2
Washington J. Browning 70.5 904 14 2
Rushing Player CAR YDS AVG TD
Stanford C. McCaffrey 78 429 5.5 3
Washington M. Gaskin 64 302 4.7 2
Receiving Player REC YDS AVG TD
Stanford C. McCaffrey 13 126 9.7 1
Washington C. McClatcher 12 269 22.4 4
Touchdowns Player TD
Stanford C. McCaffrey 4
Washington J. Ross 7
Quickchart Matchup
Stanford Stanford Off vs  Washington Washington Def
Stanford 342 yards
Washington 320.8 yards
Stanford 5.3 yards/rush
Washington 3.4 yards/rush
Stanford 6.8 yards/attempt
Washington 5.6 yards/attempt
Washington Washington Off vs  Stanford Stanford Def
Washington 445.2 yards
Stanford 337.7 yards
Washington 5.4 yards/rush
Stanford 3.1 yards/rush
Washington 9.5 yards/attempt
Stanford 7.1 yards/attempt