Picked some highlights from Monday's BCS Journey live chat session. Here's the link to the complete chat session with all of the ESPN writers and bloggers. The Stanford stuff starts at about 1:30 (10:30 for the West Coasters). Check out the link because Ted Miller and Mark Schlabach also add some great insight. Enjoy.
Comment from Dante: Stanford is overrated. Love (Andrew) Luck but he isn't any better than (Kellen) Moore and he doesn't have the players around him Moore does. They are a pretender and will struggle this weekend against a decent UW team.
Kevin Gemmell: Dante: Seen a lot of Luck and a lot of Moore. Two different styles of quarterback, but Luck is far more polished and NFL ready than Moore.
Comment from Tim: Last year, Oregon really looked too fast for Stanford once they got rolling. Has Stanford closed the gap, or is Oregon simply not as good this year?
Kevin Gemmell: Tim: I think with Stanford vs. Oregon, it's more of a match-up issue than a speed issue this year. Stanford's coaching staff has been very good at exploiting the mismatches with the TEs and using the NFL-strands of the 3-4 that Jason Tarver brings to the defense. They know how to put the right combinations together.
Comment from Eric: What I find most interesting about Stanford & Oregon is that they are both clearly 2nd half teams that work to grind out their opponents in the first half with their running game. So far, Stanford's D is playing lights out, but Oregon is a different beast. Whoever can stay fresh in the 2nd half on defense probably wins out.
Kevin Gemmell: Eric: Stanford's coaches have also been very good at halftime adjustments. They aren't afraid to experiment in the first half. Last weekend, the experiment blew up in their faces. They made the changes at halftime and blew up the scoreboard.
Comment from Josh: What does UW have to do to beat Stanford Saturday?
Kevin Gemmell: Josh: Stop the pass rush. That's where it starts with Stanford.
Comment from guest: I feel like the Stanford tight ends are just going to eat the Oregon defense alive by just finding small holes in the coverage and picking them apart on short-mid pass plays.
Kevin Gemmell: Guest: Even if they don't find the holes, they are so tall that they can go up and get the ball. Fleener is incredibly fast for his size, Ertz might have the best hands of the group and Toilolo is a beast at 6-8.
Comment from Michael: Who is more likely to lose, Oregon or Stanford, to someone other than themselves?
Kevin Gemmell: Michael: Stanford's secondary could have some trouble with the Barkley-Woods combo at USC. That's one to worry about before the Oregon game. But outside of those two, I don't see Stanford losing.
Comment from Trent: Shouldn't Pac-12 defenses be able to defend Oregon better? I mean they see the same Oregon offense every year. Are they that much worse than Boise State, LSU, Auburn etc that have completely shut Oregon down in recent years?
Kevin Gemmell: Trent: I think Stanford's 3-4 scheme is the perfect defense to handle Oregon. It gets more speedy tacklers on the field and with Terrence Stevens having a great season at NG, he's blowing off the ball and eating up three linemen at once. Would feel a lot better about it if Skov was still in, but Lancaster and Tarpley have filled in nicely.
Comment from Nick: What's made Stanford's defensive line such a pleasant surprise?
Kevin Gemmell: Nick: Terrence Stephens is playing great and Ben Gardner is a monster. Matt Masifilo has been his usual steady self. Those guys eat up blockers, but also push guys backwards and collapse the pocket. That lets guys like Chase Thomas do the mop-up work.