STANFORD — Stanford coach David Shaw spent the first weekend of the college football season finishing training camp and glancing at games while spending time with his children. Most of his players huddled around televisions in dining halls and dorm rooms. Others had been so focused on practice they forgot the kickoff date.
“I didn't even realize the season started Saturday until I turned on the TV and saw college football live,” Stanford nickel cornerback Usua Amanam said.
Everything is back to normal now.
It's finally game week on The Farm again.
After spending the first week of the season on the sidelines, the fifth-ranked Cardinal are set to start at home against San Jose State (1-0) on Saturday night. The defending Pac-12 Conference and Rose Bowl champions believe watching other teams play could be as much of a benefit as a burden when the horn sounds and they run out of the tunnel to an expected sellout crowd at Stanford Stadium.
Coaches and players had a little extra time to study quarterback David Fales and the Spartans as they blew past Sacramento State 24-0 on Thursday night. They also got a chance to watch teams struggle, including Oregon State losing 49-46 to Eastern Washington and Kansas State falling 24-21 to North Dakota State.
Even still, nobody really enjoyed being a spectator.
“It was harder than I thought it was going to be,” Shaw said. “But we talked about it with the staff, talked about it with the players who wanted to watch with a critical eye and see teams that maybe came out flat or maybe took timeouts because this guy lined up wrong or got motion penalties, etc. We want to make sure we don't start that way. So hopefully we can learn lessons from what others teams did their first game.”
NOTES: Shaw said Kodi Whitfield will open as Stanford's primary punt returner. Ty Montgomery, Barry Sanders and Keanu Nelson also are in the mix. … Stanford LB Shayne Skov said doctors cleared him to play without a brace around his surgically repaired left knee, which he wore all of last season after a devastating blow in the third game of the 2011 season knocked him for the year.
Stanford vs. San Jose State
WHEN: Saturday, 8 p.m.
WHERE: Stanford Stadium, Stanford
TV: Pac-12 Networks
RADIO: KTCT (1050 AM)