Editor's note: The above video is from Nov. 11, 2015.
Christian McCaffrey had the kind of season you dream of last year as a sophomore for Stanford. The jack of all trades running back set a new NCAA record with 3,864 all-purpose yards, which led him to being named the AP College Football Player of the Year and runner-up for the Heisman Trophy.
His head coach David Shaw knows the payer he has on his hands. Instead of staying content, Shaw will push his star.
"I think when you have a great player, the last thing you want to do is pump the brakes," Shaw said at Pac-12 Media Day on Friday.
Shaw learned this lesson when he was the Raiders' quarterbacks coach in 2001. At 36 years old, Rich Gannon had one of his best seasons of his career. Instead of sit back, head coach Jon Gruden continued to push Gannon.
"When I was in Oakland we had Rich Gannon, and Rich at a later stage of his career had really hit his stride. He was one of the best players in the league. He was league MVP, all‑pro, Pro Bowl, led the team to the Super Bowl.
"One of the things Jon Gruden said about having Rich when Rich was really playing well, the natural tendency for a coach sometimes is to say, okay, he's okay, I've got to worry about everyone else, and Jon said it's the exact opposite," Shaw remembered.
Gannon followed his 2001 Pro Bowl season with an even better performance the next year year. In 2002, Gannon was named an All-Pro for the second time in his career and won his first MVP. He also led the Raiders to the Super Bowl, but lost to Gruden's Buccaneers.
"When you've got a great player, you have to challenge that great player, you have to push that great player, because he'll push the rest of the team, and that's what we did with Andrew, that's what we're doing with Christian," Shaw said about McCaffrey's upcoming season.
McCaffrey is already near the top of the list for Heisman odds for this season, and has been named to multiple watch lists for the top awards in college football. Can he handle an even larger workload this season? Shaw has no doubts in his horse.
"We're going to put more on his shoulders because he can handle it. We're going to push him harder, push him further, and see if there's more that he can do."