NCAA

Cold-shooting Stanford routed by No. 18 Arizona

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AP

Cold-shooting Stanford routed by No. 18 Arizona

BOX SCORE

STANFORD -- Arizona coach Sean Miller delivered an obvious reminder to his team before its game Sunday against Stanford.

"Coach told us ahead of time don't forget we have the size advantage," said 6-foot-11 sophomore backup Chance Comanche. "It started to wear and tear on them and eventually it overpowered them."

The No. 18 Wildcats (13-2, 2-0 Pac-12) were simply too big for the Cardinal, winning 91-52 to complete a weekend road sweep to open Pac-12 Conference play.

The Wildcats' three big men made 15 of their first 17 shots and combined to score 44 points as Arizona beat the Cardinal for the 14th straight time.

"The game plan was feed the bigs. They shot 80 percent from the field, so that was amazing," said freshman guard Rawle Alkins, who scored 19 points.

Junior center Dusan Ristic of Serbia scored 16 points on 7-for-10 shooting and fellow 7-footer Lauri Markannen, a freshman from Finland, scored 15 points, including 3-for-3 from the 3-point arc.

Comanche made his first five attempts and wound up with 13 points and 10 rebounds as the Arizona three big men shot 16 for 20 from the field.

"The production we're getting from that group on offense, defense and rebounding gives us a lot of firepower," Miller said of his big men. "I think we can play a lot of different styles."

Arizona shot 62.5 percent for the game, which left Stanford coach Jarod Haase frustrated. The Cardinal (8-6, 0-2) gave up 189 points in two games to open the conference schedule.

"We're struggling in a lot of ways. Against Arizona it was exposed even more, because they do throw the basketball inside," Haase said. "The post defense, we tried to double early on, and they scored eight quick points off of that. Our interior play and interior defense should be a strength of our team, and today it was not."

Stanford shot 34 percent, including 23 percent in the second half. Reid Travis, the Cardinal's 6-8 power forward, was held to 11 points - seven under his season average - before fouling out.

"There's a lot that went wrong in this game," Travis said. ""Ultimately, it wasn't our offense that lost this game. It was our D."

BIG PICTURE:
Arizona: Point guard Parker Jackson-Cartwright, in just his second game back after missing six with a high ankle sprain he suffered Nov. 30 against Texas Southern, shot 0-for-4 but dished a game-high six assists in 22 minutes off the bench. He gives Arizona one more weapon on offense, especially as a facilitator for the team's big men.

Stanford: The Cardinal is struggling to defend the perimeter and the dribble drive. Arizona made 10 of 14 shots from the 3-point arc two days after Arizona State converted 13 of 24. The Wildcats also attacked the rim, repeatedly drew fouls and cashed in with a 21-for-23 performance at the free throw line.

FROSH TRIO:
Arizona freshmen Alkins (19 points), Kobi Simmons (15) and Markannen (15) each maintained their double-digit scoring averages. The Wildcats and Auburn are the only two Division I teams in the country whose three leading scorers are freshmen, all averaging at least 10 points.

NOT RESILIENT:
Stanford junior forward Michael Humphrey, who sat out the Arizona State game while going through the concussion protocol, was back against Arizona and contributed eight points. He picked up his second foul and had to sit with 12:43 left in the first half and Stanford down just 17-15.

Haase refused to call it a turning point. "At this point, the unfortunate part is, I don't think we're resilient enough or tough enough to fight through any adversity," he said.

VISITOR CHANT:
Several times Sunday a vocal Arizona fan contingent at Maples Pavilion delivered loud chants of "U of A!" The home crowd never effectively answered. "It's tough," Stanford guard Dorian Pickens said. "When we're able to get things going on our side, and start putting some wins up, that won't happen."

UP NEXT:
Arizona returns home for a Thursday matchup against Utah. The Wildcats lost a road game to the Utes in their only matchup a year ago, snapping a 12-game win streak in the series. Utah (10-3) opened Pac-12 play Sunday with a 76-60 win over Colorado.

Stanford heads to Los Angeles to face two teams that were undefeated until the start of Pac-12 play this week - USC on Thursday and UCLA on Sunday. The Cardinal has won five straight vs. the Trojans and beat the Bruins in their only matchup last season.

From feeding homeless to doing the splits, Stanford's Phillips a rare find

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From feeding homeless to doing the splits, Stanford's Phillips a rare find

Stanford has a penchant for recruiting the overachieving student-athlete. Even among those standards, Harrison Phillips is a rare find. The senior defensive tackle helps feed the homeless every Friday morning at a local shelter. He often visits the kids in the oncology ward at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital. He was named to the Pac-12 All Academic First Team and will graduate in December with a double major and a minor. He is a team captain and heir apparent to Solomon Thomas, the 49ers third overall pick in this year’s NFL draft.

“One thing you love about Harrison is, every day he’s going to get something done,” head coach David Shaw told NBC Sports Bay Area. “On the field, off the field, in the community, he’s always got a million things going on. But nothing ever suffers.

"He does everything at a high level.”

At 6-foot-4, 290 pounds, Phillips is a mountain of a man. His skill set is different than that of Thomas, but he can be just as disruptive. He plays over the center. He plays over the guards. His self-proclaimed job is to eat as many blocks as possible to keep the linebackers free.

“He’s such that hard point for us. He’s that guy up front that’s getting knock back, that force in the run game that you gotta have,” defensive coordinator Lance Anderson explained. “You have to have that strong solid point in the middle of your defense, and he provides that.”

Phillips had a game-high 11 tackles, five of them solo, in the Cardinal’s loss to USC. No other defensive lineman on the field had more than three.

“He’s outstanding against the run. He’s a very good pass rusher,” Shaw added. “He’s got a lot of tools that can work inside.”

Phillips main instruments of domination are strength, knowledge of leverage and abnormal flexibility for a man of his size.

“He can do the splits on command,” Thomas said laughing from in front of his locker after a recent 49ers practice. “He loves showing it off. We get on him for it. But he loves doing it.

And, according to Thomas, his former Stanford teammate loves to bench. So it comes as no surprise that Phillips’ upper body strength stands out.

“He’ll be really low in a position that you think he’d get knocked over in,” Thomas explained. “Because of how flexible he is, it’s not a problem for him to get in that position and stay there and move on from there. It definitely shows up on his film.”

No doubt, Phillips says, that ability comes from his wrestling experience. His high school curriculum vitae includes, “Nebraska State Wrestling Champion, Heavy Weight Division, Sophomore, Junior and Senior years.”

Phillips first year on The Farm, he vividly remembers his Stanford coaches testing him. Just a mere 245 pounds at the time, they put him up against Joshua Garnett and Andrus Peat, two offensive linemen now in the NFL and each well over 300 pounds.

“They’d double team me, almost 700 pounds on you, and I would somehow find leverage and be able to sit on some of those double teams,” Phillips said. “I think the violence that wrestling brings, and balance and being comfortable in weird positions, wrestling has a ton of scrambling, as it's called, you just know your body and know what you can do. I have tremendous flexibility, and I use everything to my advantage.”

One thing Phillips is not allowed to do is use his explosiveness away from the football field. At one time, Phillips could do a back flip off the wall, but he no longer attempts it.

“I’m not a big fan of the back hand springs,” Shaw said. “I’d like for him to stay on his feet.”

Phillips doesn’t argue. He lost his entire sophomore year to a knee injury, and doesn’t want to risk another. He has NFL aspirations and put himself in position to graduate in three-and-a-half years should he choose to enter the 2018 draft. But just as he has done at Stanford, he is looking to be more than just a name on a jersey should he play on a professional level.

“I want to build something that is really lasting,” Phillips said of his life goal, “and put my name on something to touch people’s lives and change people’s lives, pay it forward as much as I can.”

No. 6 USC routs No. 14 Stanford for 11th straight win

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USASTI

No. 6 USC routs No. 14 Stanford for 11th straight win

LOS ANGELES  — Steven Mitchell and Deontay Burnett caught two touchdown passes apiece from Sam Darnold, and No. 6 Southern California extended its winning streak to 11 games with a bruising 42-24 victory over No. 14 Stanford on Saturday night.

Darnold went 21 of 26 with 316 yards passing for the Trojans (2-0, 1-0 Pac-12), who snapped their three-game losing streak in this California private-school rivalry. USC racked up 623 total yards and won the first Pac-12 game of the new season by beating the hard-nosed Cardinal (1-1, 0-1) at their own physical game.

Ronald Jones II rushed for 116 yards and scored a touchdown in his ninth consecutive game as USC excelled at Stanford's traditional strengths, running the ball for 307 yards and controlling both lines of scrimmage. Turnovers and penalties by the Trojans kept it fairly close, but freshman Stephen Carr added 119 yards rushing, and Jones cartwheeled into the end zone with a clinching 23-yard TD run with 4:15 to play.

Keller Chryst passed for 172 yards and two touchdowns, while Bryce Love had a 75-yard TD run among his 160 yards rushing for the Cardinal, who hadn't played since their season-opening win over Rice in Australia last month.

After a scoreless third quarter, USC made a 90-yard scoring drive capped by Mitchell's second TD on a feathery 11-yard TD pass by Darnold with 9:42 to play. Stanford stayed close with J.J. Arcega-Whiteside's TD catch with 6:41 to play, but Jones' incredible second TD run capped a smooth 75-yard drive in USC's 11th consecutive win at the Coliseum.

Stanford had won eight of its last 11 meetings with USC in a dominant stretch that began with its historic 2007 upset victory at the Coliseum.

After USC scored 49 points in its season opener, Darnold's offense again was in fine form from the start. USC scored four touchdowns on five lengthy drives in the first half, with Darnold hitting Burnett for two of his three TD passes.

USC moved 74 yards on two plays late in the half to take a 28-17 lead on Burnett's leaping 25-yard TD grab.

THE TAKEAWAY

Stanford: That 62-point performance in the season opener Down Under was impossible to replicate against a top Pac-12 defense, and the Cardinal's offense will know it must add versatility to the attack. Stanford's defense also had big problems at the line of scrimmage, and that isn't a problem with which the Cardinal have much experience.

USC: This talent-laden offense has appeared to have the makings of a juggernaut so far. Darnold returned to 2016 form with a smooth, poised performance against a vaunted conference opponent, while the Trojans' receivers appear to be much more reliable than coach Clay Helton feared. USC's defense also stepped up after halftime and shut down one of the Pac-12's best.

UP NEXT

Stanford: The Cardinal's three-game stretch away from home to open the season concludes at San Diego State.

USC: The Trojans welcome Texas to the Coliseum for a meeting of two powerhouse programs.