2012 College Football Early Preview
OFFENSE: Chris Owusu-WR, Griff Whalen-WR, Coby Fleener-TE, Andrew Luck-QB (NFL), David DeCastro-OG (NFL), Jonathan Martin-OT (NFL)
DEFENSE: Matt Masifilo-DE, Max Bergen-ILB, Johnson Bademosi-CB, Delano Howell-SS, Michael Thomas-FS, David Green-P
RB Stepfan Taylor
Offensive Line / Defensive Front Seven

If both DeCastro and Martin somehow decided to come back for another year, this offensive line would enter next season as the #1 OL unit in America. This was the stingiest run stuffing defense in the Pac 12 and second best in sack totals. The sturdy linebackers have four starters returning led by senior Chase Thomas. They get an extra boost if the team leader Shane Skov can return from a knee injury.

Quarterback / Receiver

Well there can be no question what the loss of quarterback Andrew Luck means...some NFL team is going to be quite happy, the Cards will not. Back ups Nottingham and Picazo attempted all of four passes this fall. Much like this past season, the tight end cupboard is stacked...the receiver cupboard is empty.

LB Chase Thomas
* DEPTH CHARTS were only designed as a simplistic gauge for listing players that departed and players that received the most playing experience (consistent starters). recognizes the importance of missing personnel data not listed such as redshirts, transfers, injuries, incoming recruits, back ups and alternates. Their coverage will begin with our full 2012 Preseason Preview due out this coming spring.
Returning Starters/
Key Players
QB Brett Nottingham-So Robbie Picazo-Jr
FB Ryan Hewitt-Jr Geoff Meinken-Jr
RB Stepfan Taylor-Sr Tyler Gaffney-Sr / Anthony Wilkerson-Jr
WR Ty Montgomery-So Jamal-Rashad Patterson-Sr
WR Drew Terrell-Sr ..
TE Levine Toilolo-Jr Zach Ertz-Jr
OT .. ..
OG David Yankey-So ..
C Sam Schwartstein-Sr ..
OG .. ..
OT Cameron Fleming-So ..
K Jordan Williamson-So Eric Whitaker-Jr
Returning Starters/
Key Players
DE Josh Mauro-Jr ..
NG Terrence Stephens-Sr David Parry-So
DE Ben Gardner-Jr Henry Anderson-So
OLB Chase Thomas-Sr Blake Lueders-Jr
ILB Jarek Lancaster-Jr Shayne Skov-Sr (inj.) / James Vaughters-So
ILB A.J. Tarpley-So Joe Hemschoot-So
OLB Trent Murphy-Jr Alex Debniak-Sr
CB Usua Amanam-Jr ..
CB Terrence Brown-Jr Barry Browning-Jr
SS Jordan Richards-So Myles Muagututia-Sr
FS Devon Carrington-Jr ..
P Daniel Zychlinski-Sr ..


Cutting to the chase...the quarterback candidates to replace Luck are:

  • (1) Redshirt Sophomore Brett Nottingham - a 6'4 Bay Area four-star stud who ranked as the fourth-best pro-style quarterback by Notice a common theme here…a 4.0 student in high school, Nottingham was also recruited by some Ivy League schools.
  • (2) Redshirt Junior Robbie Picazo - a 6'3 walk-on who was tabbed the Orange County Register 2008 Offensive Player of the Year - ahead of some guy named Matt Barkley. Notice a common theme here...a lights-out student (4.5 GPA), Picazo chose Stanford over Princeton.
  • (3) Redshirt Junior Josh Nunes - a 6'4 QB with 4.8 speed also from the L.A. area. He served as Luck's primary back up in 2010. Notice a common theme here…like Nottingham and Picazo, Nunes was a top student in high school, with a 4.6 GPA.


  • Stepfan Taylor is poised to become possibly the best running back the Pac 12 has to offer with LaMichael James heading to the NFL. He also has the best fullback in the league blocking for him with Ryan Hewitt.
  • The good receiving news: Stanford is absolutely loaded for "Bear" at the tight end position with 6'8 star Levin Toilolo and 6'6 star Zach Ertz continuing to haul in those passes.
  • The bad receiving news: Only three returning wide receivers on the roster caught a pass in 2011 while totaling 28 receptions between them. That is roughly 10% of the 270 passes caught.
  • Stanford will need to continue focusing on pressuring quarterbacks until these young cornerbacks can learn to cover better. The only real weakness on this team outside of missing a dominating wide receiver is in the secondary.
  • Stanford's ground game provides the team's identity and has been nearly as instrumental in the program's turnaround as Andrew Luck thanks to an offensive line that has become an NFL factory.



09/01 - San Jose State
09/08 - Duke
10/13 - at Notre Dame
TBA Arizona
TBA Oregon State
TBA Southern California
TBA Washington State
TBA at Colorado
TBA at Oregon
TBA at Washington
TBA at California