San Jose State quarterback David Fales is as efficient with his words as his passes. The senior was at his most succinct recently when asked about last year's narrow loss to Stanford and the Spartans' mindset this week.
"We'll be ready," he said, "and we definitely remember."
So does the Cardinal.
SJSU played so well in a 20-17 defeat that it seemingly has lost the element of surprise. Fifth-ranked Stanford is expected to bring the full force of its talent and experience into Saturday's tango.
"We're going to get their best shot," Cardinal linebacker Shayne Skov said, "and we'll give them ours."
Stanford is a 251/2-point favorite in the last Bill Walsh Legacy Game, named for the SJSU alum and former Stanford coach. (The teams aren't scheduled to meet in the future.) If it's anything like last year's encounter, the finale should be well-stocked with drama.
Playing its first game in the post-Andrew Luck era, the Cardinal zoomed to a 14-0 lead and appeared headed to another blowout victory over the Spartans.
And then everything changed: SJSU settled in, bucked up and fought back.
The Spartans matched Stanford's power at the line of scrimmage and stuffed the Cardinal running game. Fales found his rhythm -- at the time, he was a little-known transfer from Monterey Peninsula College -- and SJSU scored twice in the third quarter to pull even.
A field goal by Stanford's Jordan Williamson early in the fourth was the difference.
"We were ill-prepared," Cardinal nickel back Usua Amanam said earlier this week. "It wasn't until the third or fourth quarter that we realized we were in a dogfight.
"It didn't dawn on me how good San Jose State was. We're all fully aware now."
Stanford will be the fresher team Saturday, but that might not be an advantage.
The Spartans, who beat Sacramento State last week, have been able to identify and correct early-season kinks.
Stanford, which had a bye, doesn't know what its kinks are.
Nor does the Cardinal know what to expect from SJSU, which has a new coaching staff and new playbook.
More than likely, the Spartans withheld their best schemes and formations from the season opener and will unleash them Saturday.
But one thing is certain: If Fales gets comfortable in the pocket, the Spartans will again be in range of an upset in the fourth quarter.
Last year, he completed 68.6 percent of his passes against what proved to be one of the top defenses in the nation.
"He's hard to get to because he has such a quick release and sees things pretty quickly," Cardinal coach David Shaw said. "The combination of his accuracy and the fact that he can go through his reads quickly is very impressive."
All the participants, it seems, have vivid memories.
San Jose State (1-0)
at No. 5 Stanford (0-0),
8 p.m. Pac-12 Networks
Stanford leads 51-14-1 and has won five in a row, including a 20-17 victory last year. This is the final scheduled game in the series. San Jose State hasn't beaten Stanford since 2006.