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E.J. Smith out for season for Stanford football head coach David Shaw confirms

Another loss for a Cardinal team that’s already replete with issues this season.

Running back E. J. Smith of the Stanford Cardinal carries the ball during a Pac-12 college football game against the USC Trojans played on September 10, 2022 at Stanford Stadium in Palo Alto, California. Photo by David Madison/Getty Images

A real tough blow for the Stanford Cardinal today, as head coach David Shaw confirmed running back E.J. Smith is out for the season.

The son of former Florida Gators standout and NFL Hall-of-Famer Emmitt Smith, E.J. had 30 carries for 206 yards and three touchdowns in two games this season. He was considered the next star in a long line of Stanford running backs, with a big jump in workload expected after just 26 carries for 133 yards in seven appearances during the 2021 campaign

The Cardinal are 1-2, with losses to their only FBS opponents USC and Washington both by double digits. And this is another blow to a team that hasn’t finished over .500 in a full season since 2018. Stanford is 12-21 in their last three-plus seasons, and 9-17 in Pac-12 play. While due to the strict academic standards placed on admits, it’s considered one of the tougher places to have long-term success.

But for head coach David Shaw, who has won the Pac-12 three times during his 12-year tenure in Palo Alto, it’s another tough break for a program that is heading in the wrong direction in the win column as of late.