The perfect play, called at the perfect time and executed to, well, perfection, turned the tide of Stanford's 30-28 Pac-12 football victory over host Washington State on Saturday.
The Cardinal (7-1 overall, 6-0 Pac-12) had just taken over following a Cougars punt and Kevin Hogan faked a pitch to Christian McCaffrey, kept the ball and raced 59 yards for a touchdown, bringing Stanford within 22-20 of Washington State and igniting an improbable rally.
"We survived by the skin of our teeth," Cardinal coach David Shaw said. "Our quarterback has one has one of the biggest hearts in college football."
Hogan rushed for 112 important yards as the Cougars corralled McCaffrey for most of the game. The sophomore running back came through on Stanford's winning drive, though, and he finished with 107 yards.
"The passing game wasn't doing very well so we went to the running game," Shaw said. "We need to play our game and play it better."
No. 8 Stanford survived at Washington State in a pivotal Pac-12 North contest in the rain at Martin Stadium, overcoming two 12-point deficits and Conrad Ukropina connected on a 19-yard field goal with 1:54 left for the margin of victory.
Washington State missed a 43-yard field goal with no time left to give the Cardinal the win.
The Cougars drove to the Stanford 27 in the final seconds, giving Erik Powell a chance for his sixth field goal of the game.
He hit from 47 and 46, but this time the left-footer hooked to the right allowing Stanford to maintain its unbeaten conference record and emerge with a two-game lead over second-place Oregon and Washington State (6-2, 3-2) in the North Division.
McCaffrey was largely silenced, but carried for 30 to set up Ukropina's winner. The series was set up by the second of two crucial interceptions by freshman Quenton Meeks, who seemed to know exactly where Cougars quarterback Luke Falk was going to throw.
On Stanford's first series of the second half, Hogan faked a pitch to McCaffrey, but instead carried himself, for 39 yards, to set up Remound Wright's two-yard touchdown run.
Though WSU answered quickly with another touchdown to build the lead to 22-10, the Hogan strategy was paying off.
He also scored on a 6-yard TD run after Meeks' first interception and return to the WSU 17. That capped a 17-point Stanford surge bridging the third and fourth quarters, all within a span of 4:20, for a 27-22 lead.