TUCSON, Ariz. -- When the talk of win streaks started to surface following Saturday night's victory over Arizona, the reaction from Stanford head coach David Shaw and his team-first quarterback, Andrew Luck, was about what you would expect.
The players knew before kickoff that with Auburn’s loss to Clemson in the Tiger Bowl, they were the new owners of the nation’s longest active win streak in FBS football. They proceeded to trounce Arizona 37-10 -- behind 153 rushing yards from Stepfan Taylor, 325 passing yards from Luck and a pair of touchdown receptions from his tight ends.
Did knowing that the top streak in the country was theirs impact them in any way?
“Whatever,” said Luck, with his usual disregard for questions outside the realm of what's happening on the field. “The only thing that matters is what we’ve done this year. We don’t put too much stock into stuff like that.”
The win streak started with the sixth game last year. After falling to Oregon 52-31 in Eugene on Oct. 2, the Cardinal have run off 11 straight -- including a 40-12 victory over Virginia Tech in the Orange Bowl. During that stretch, the Cardinal have outscored their opponents by an average of 40-13.
Of the 11 wins, two have come against top-25 teams (No. 13 Arizona and No. 12 Virginia Tech) two of them have been shutouts and eight of the opponents have been held to 14 points or less.
“We talked about it in the locker room,” said Shaw. “It doesn’t mean anything to us. The only thing that matters is that we’re 1-0 in our conference.”
It was a bad night for some streaks and a good night for others. Ohio State, which was No. 2 behind Stanford with eight straight wins, fell to Miami – and fell out of the top 25 for the first time since Nov. 20, 2004. The Cardinal, meanwhile, moved up to No. 5 in The Associated Press poll. This is the 10th consecutive week they have been in the top 10, a school best.
They are also in the thick of one of the greatest win streaks in school history. The longest is 13 games, accomplished twice; first in 1904-1905 and again from 1939-1941.
Stanford's opponents during the 11-game win streak.
Oct. 9, USC, 37-35
Oc. 23, Washington State, 38-28
Oct. 30 at Washington, 41-0
Nov. 6 vs. Arizona (13), 42-17
Nov. 13, at Arizona State, 17-13
Nov. 20, at California, 48-14
Nov. 27, Oregon State, 38-0
Jan. 3, Virginia Tech (12), 40-12
Sept. 3, San Jose State, 57-3
Sept. 10, at Duke, 44-14
Sept. 17, at Arizona, 37-10