5:00 PM ET, October 8, 2005
Martin Stadium, PULLMAN, WA
PULLMAN, Wash. (AP) -- Trent Edwards found his legs, and then he let his offensive line do the rest.
"I think the offensive line took a lot of heat after last week's loss to Oregon, and I know our game plan was to come out and dominate up front," he said after throwing three touchdowns as Stanford edged Washington State 24-21 Saturday.
"If you can handle their front four, you can open up the running game and the passing game," Edwards said after doing both well. "It keeps the defense off balance, whether you're playing Washington State, you're playing Oregon, no matter what Pac-10 team you're playing, you keep them off balance by controlling the front line."
Mark Bradford caught TD passes of 6 and 17 yards and Edwards hit Justin McCullum on a 19-yard score as the Cardinal (2-2, 1-1 Pac-10) recorded its first conference victory since beating Washington State 23-17 last Oct. 16.
Edwards went 19-of-28 for 257 yards and three TDs and the Cardinal had 475 yards of total offense. He also led Cardinal rushers with 92 yards.
Michael Sgroi kicked a 34-yard field goal with 7:16 remaining that ended up being the difference. The kick came after a 33-yard attempt was blocked in the second quarter and a 38-yarder missed right in the third quarter.
McCullum said coaches found weaknesses in the Cougars' defensive scheme that the Cardinal exploited.
Edwards "was on the perimeter a lot and the way their defense is designed, there are a lot of holes for the quarterbacks to run because their zones are a little more spread out than most teams," McCullum said. "I think Trent capitalized on that, we saw the films, and that was a big, big part of our game."
WSU was without its leading receiver, Jason Hill, and leading tackler, middle linebacker Will Derting, who were injured -- facts not lost to the Cardinal, which ran a lot of its plays up the middle.
Stanford had the ball nearly 14 minutes longer than the Cougars and converted nine of 16 third downs. The Cougars were able to convert just three of 11 third downs.
"That young man played a hell of a ball game," WSU coach Bill Doba said of Edwards. "He threw the ball well, scrambled well, ran the quarterback draw on us. We had a guy assigned to him and he still made us miss."
Stanford's win overshadowed a sterling performance by Jerome Harrison, who rushed 29 times for 218 yards and scored a TD for the Cougars. He had 130 yards by halftime for his eighth consecutive game of 100 yards or more since last season.
"That was a good game," Harrison said. "I realize their offense was keeping us off the field ... and you can't score points if you aren't on the field. They had a good game plan and it worked."
Washington State (3-2, 0-2) had 407 yards of offense, but was unable to put Stanford away after the Cardinal scored first. Edwards hit McCullum to make it 14-7 midway through the third quarter. WSU responded with an 80-yard drive, culminating with Harrison's 8-yard TD run, to tie it at 14.
Edwards' second TD pass to Bradford put the Cardinal up 21-14, and Sgroi's field goal gave Stanford a 10-point cushion.
Alex Brink threw a 28-yard TD pass to Greg Prator late in the game to make it 24-21, but Brink was intercepted in the final minute to end a final scoring threat. Brink completed 13 of 26 passes for 161 yards, but was intercepted twice.
Stanford scored first when Bradford grabbed a 17-yard TD pass from Edwards. WSU replied with an 80-yard drive, keyed by Harrison's 69-yard scamper down the right side to the Stanford 5. Brink pushed across from the 1 on fourth-and-1 to tie it at 7.
"Today was really a tremendous victory for our team and the football program," Stanford coach Walt Harris said. "We had to play on the road. Here is a team (WSU) that had a shocking loss, because they were so far ahead, and we're playing in their place, with a rabid crowd, and they were 3-1. So it was a tremendous team victory."
Team Stat Comparison
|3rd Down Conversions||9-16||3-11|
|4th Down Conversions||0-0||2-2|
|TD||5:47||MARK BRADFORD 17 YD PASS FROM TRENT EDWARDS (MICHAEL SGROI KICK)|
Drive info: 8 plays, 58 yards.
|TD||3:03||ALEX BRINK 1 YD RUN (LOREN LANGLEY KICK)|
Drive info: 6 plays, 80 yards.
|TD||7:55||JUSTIN MCCULLUM 19 YD PASS FROM TRENT EDWARDS (MICHAEL SGROI KICK)|
Drive info: 6 plays, 60 yards.
|TD||4:26||JEROME HARRISON 8 YD RUN (LOREN LANGLEY KICK)|
Drive info: 8 plays, 80 yards.
|TD||0:16||MARK BRADFORD 6 YD PASS FROM TRENT EDWARDS (MICHAEL SGROI KICK)|
Drive info: 8 plays, 62 yards.
|FG||7:16||MICHAEL SGROI 34 YD FG|
Drive info: 10 plays, 54 yards.
|TD||4:01||GREG PRATOR 28 YD PASS FROM ALEX BRINK (LOREN LANGLEY KICK)|
Drive info: 10 plays, 80 yards.