- Erik McKinney, ESPN Staff Writer
Stanford football has a long and storied history, but the foundation for the 2013 version of the Cardinal needs only to be traced to the 2008 recruiting class. Though none of those signees remain on the roster, that group included Andrew Luck, Chase Thomas, Jonathan Martin, David DeCastro and others -- players who would go on to set the tone offensively and defensively for the Cardinal, turning a program that went 4-8 in 2007 to the No. 4 team in the country three years later.
The seeds for the team USC will take into the Coliseum on Saturday night were planted several years ago, as well, and plenty of credit for the talent level and roster size goes to former Trojans tailback Reggie Bush. Not only is Bush the first name many USC players mention when recounting their first introduction to USC football, he's also the biggest reason the Trojans were able to send just 49 available scholarship players to Oregon State two weeks ago, as NCAA sanctions centered around Bush decimated the USC roster.