The Stanford Cardinal defense lost a key player from Saturday’s win over Oregon State. CBSsportsline.com reported on Tuesday that senior defensive end Ben Gardner suffered a left pectoral injury, and he will be sidelined for the rest of the season.
Unfortunately for Gardner, not only is his season cut short, but his career with Stanford is over. Ben Gardner was part of a stout defense that caused plenty of teams fits with their physicality. This season, Gardner has 7.5 tackles for loss and 4.5 sacks.
Although Gardner is out for the season and Stanford will miss his leadership, the PAC 12 champions have plenty of talent on the defensive side of the ball. They will all need to step up in next week’s game against Oregon.
The common belief is that Stanford has controlled Oregon’s offense in recent seasons. In reality, last season was the only time that Stanford played particularly well. They held Oregon to 14 points in 2012. Here are the Oregon scores of the previous five years (53, 52, 42, 35, 55).
The chances are that Stanford won’t allow another 50 point game, but it will be difficult for both teams to produce another slugfest like last year’s game. However, both teams have the week off to get ready for the top five match up.