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Stanford, 71, Northwestern, 58, postgame recap.

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Northwestern couldn't run with Stanford for 40 minutes, which was kinda expected, but still a harsh reality check.

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Northwestern held tight for a bit against a significantly better Stanford team, but ended up looking outmatched against the Cardinal in a 71-58 defeat, first loss of the budding Chris Collins era.

Northwestern played really well for a half, by which I mean "Drew Crawford had 13 points in the first half on a variety of increasingly preposterous looks." They entered the break down two, which, all things considered, was a good result. Quite frankly, it was encouraging to see even that: NU's zone offense looked nice, and Crawford looked like a damn champ.

But it was borne on great performance from Crawford and a poor performance from Stanford, with Dwight Powell out for basically the entire half and a series of unforced turnovers.

In the second half, the Stanford turnovers stopped happening and the NU shots stopped falling -- even for Crawford, whose only two points in the second came on a putback dunk.

But things fell apart, and things got really, really, really ugly.

I didn't expect a win, but this was still a bit not fun to watch. On to some easier opponents for now.