Stanford Football: top performances 2012

Top performances of 2012: Henry Anderson

February, 26, 2013
2/26/13
6:00
AM ET
We're looking at some of the top individual performances in the Pac-12 in 2012.

Up next: You have a problem with authority, Mr. Anderson.

Who and against whom: Stanford defensive end Henry Anderson played a key -- and underrated -- role in Stanford stifling high-powered Oregon in a 17-14 victory.

The numbers: Anderson ranked second on the Cardinal defense with seven tackles, with 2.5 coming for a loss. He also had a sack and quarterback hurry.

A closer look: Make no mistake. Stanford's holding Oregon to 14 points -- in Autzen Stadium -- was all about a total team effort and exemplary execution of an outstanding game plan put together by coordinator Derek Mason. In fact, this game is when LB Shayne Skov became all Shayne Skov-y again, and multiple players shined. But Anderson's performance seemed to slip under the radar. He made a number of important plays that are worthy of recalling. In the second quarter on a third-and-1 play from the the Stanford 35, he caught De'Anthony Thomas for a 3-yard loss. No points were forthcoming. On a second-and-4 from the Stanford 48, he sacked Marcus Mariota for a 3-yard loss. Facing third-and-long, Mariota threw an interception on the next play. Anderson also had two tackles -- for zero and two-yard gains -- on the Ducks' final possession of regulation, which also yielded no points and sent the game into overtime. We all remember what happened next: Notre Dame, not Oregon, played Alabama for the national title. And Stanford went on to win the Pac-12 and the Rose Bowl.

Top performances of 2012: Josh Nunes

February, 14, 2013
2/14/13
6:00
AM ET
We're looking at some of the top individual performances in the Pac-12 in 2012.

Up next: Start spreading the Nunes

Who and against whom: Stanford quarterback Josh Nunes helped engineer a 14-point fourth-quarter comeback as the Cardinal topped Arizona 54-48 in overtime -- capping one of the most thrilling games in the Pac-12 last season.

The numbers: Nunes accounted for five touchdowns, completing 21-of-34 passes for 360 yards and two scores plus three more on the ground.

A closer look: When future generations look back at Stanford's 2012 Pac-12 championship run and ensuing Rose Bowl victory, chances are Nunes will simply be remembered as the guy who couldn't replace Andrew Luck. Yeah, that's kind of a raw deal -- because he bailed out Stanford's impenetrable defense big time when the Wildcats showed up on the Farm and scorched Stanford's D for 617 yards. The offense had to win the game, and Nunes responded with career highs in completions, yards and quarterback rating. After the Wildcats jumped ahead 48-34 with 9 minutes, 13 seconds left in the game, Nunes put together a nine-play, 75-yard touchdown drive that ended with him scoring from 1 yard out. Then the Cardinal drove 79 yards on 14 plays to tie the score and force overtime, the knotting tally coming on a 3-yard Nunes run. He was 9-of-16 for 119 yards during the final two drives.

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