Football looks to finish season on high note versus Tar Heels

No. 18 Stanford football (9-3, 6-3 Pac-12) will look to cap off the 2016 season with a victory in the Hyundai Sun Bowl against the North Carolina Tar Heels (8-4, 5-3 ACC) Friday at Sun Bowl Stadium in El Paso, Texas.


The game will mark Stanford’s eighth-consecutive bowl appearance, the longest active streak in the Pac-12 that began when the Cardinal squared off against the Oklahoma Sooners in the Sun Bowl in 2009.

A win for Stanford would give the team its sixth 10-win season in the last seven years and give head coach David Shaw his fourth bowl win, which would put him past Bill Walsh for most in school history.

The Cardinal will have to do so without star junior running back Christian McCaffrey, who has declared for the 2017 NFL Draft and has opted not to participate in the Sun Bowl since Stanford’s last game against Rice.

Coaches, players and fans will all get a better preview of next year’s Cardinal squad as Stanford will move on with running back Bryce Love. The speedy sophomore will look to lead the Cardinal rushing attack in the same manner he did the last time Stanford was without McCaffrey against Notre Dame in October, a game in which he racked up 130 rushing yards and scored the game-winning touchdown.

“He’s an every down back,” Shaw said. “He’s a physical, explosive runner. He’s not a small back by any stretch of the imagination. He runs through tackles and he’s tough. For a guy who’s under six foot, he can push the pile and drive his legs.”

Love accumulated 664 yards on the…

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