Stanford's training camp only started two days ago, but the media love is already pouring in. After years of asking a different version of the same question (How can Stanford compete now that ____ is gone?), it seems like college football observers are finally -- finally -- accepting the truth. Stanford football is here to stay. Sports Illustrated has the Cardinal at #2 in their preseason rankings (here's Stewart Mandel's Stanford preview), and there's also a nice piece on cover boy Shayne Skov.
While I love that Skov is gracing one of SI's six regional covers this week, I have a small quibble with the magazine's all-too-simple lumping of Stanford in the same category with Northwestern, Vanderbilt, and Duke in their subhead, "The Rise of the Nerds." If we're being honest, none of those schools or football teams belongs in the same conversation with Stanford. First, even though those other three schools are quality academic institutions, I'm guessing that there isn't a student on any of those campuses who wouldn't jump at Stanford acceptance letter. Second, not one of those football teams can begin to compete with the Mighty Card. I apologize if that sounds a touch elitist, but I don't think you can really argue against either assertion.