Derek Mason explains new goals for Stanford defense

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Over on The Farm, Vic Fangio is gone, but Stanford co-defensive coordinator / defensive backs coach Derek Mason says the Cardinal won’t change much of the defensive scheme.

Mason says, “We're taking the approach, if it's not broken, don't fix it. We'll stay with the same basic packages with some variations, but we're trying to build a defensive tradition at Stanford. We felt like last year was the first phase. Some of the players who were here are now gone. The foundation has been laid and now it's time for the walls to go up. We're moving into Phase Two.”

The only new coach to the Stanford defensive staff this year is former San Francisco 49ers outside linebackers coach Jason Tarver. He joins Mason, Lance Anderson, and Randy Hart.

Mason says, “The bottom line is we can't stay the same. We'll be a different football team in 2011 based on our personnel but our philosophy will be the same. We want to be physical, play knockback football and make sure we play with a high level of intensity.”

“The game is about limiting the run and stopping explosive plays. If we can get off the field on third down and get the ball back into that guy's hands - and we all know who "that" guy is - then we'll be successful.”

Stanford opens with San Jose State before traveling to Duke and Arizona. The final three games all are in Palo Alto against Oregon, Cal, and Notre Dame.

Stanford will play their spring game next Saturday in San Francisco. You gotta see the promo video for the game. It’s not your normal marketing strategy.