Archive for October, 2016

Pound and ground was on display.  The offensive line and Nick Bawden were out in force.  Utah State’s defensive line and linebackers were walking backwards the entire game.  400 rushing yards is phenomenal.  14 passing yards?  Not so much.

Donnel Pumphrey runs the ball on 32 occasions for 223 yards (7 yards per carry).  Juwan Washington shows the future with a line of 14/143 for almost 10 yards per carry.  Oy vey!  Plus, Mr. Washington scores twice.  The offense registering 7 for 14 on third down conversions is further proof a good night on the field.  As was 4 red zone scores.

Dominating Utah State at Logan in the rain is testament to preparation and a lot of hard work on the practice field.  This game was ripe for difficulty, especially with the Aggies scoring on their first possession.  Alas, difficulty was not the case.  Maybe for Utah State.

A big night for John Baron.  4/4!  Nice range from 21 yards to a maximum of 43 yards.  Change nothing.

The defense was the usual blur of chaos.  3 sacks, Malik Smith’s interception and touchdown, and Aztec tackling resulting in 23 yards lost at the expense of the Aggies’ offense.  11/26 is reflective of a quarterback struggling.  Utah State averaged a paltry 2.5 yards per carry.  A hand shake to Ron Smith on substantial playing time in the defensive backfield and the tipped pass in the fourth quarter that fell to the ground.  Given the effective play of Kyaha Tezino and Jay Henderson at linebacker, Randy Ricks’ injury is not as problematic as first thought.

Back to the Q this Saturday.  The Rainbow flies in from the islands.  Hawaii is much improved.

7-1/4-0.

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At last, offense!  The ball journeyed to the end zone more than three occasions.  Thank you, Jeff Horton.  I know he called for a pass on the first play of the game to shame me.  Nice try.  I continue to call for more than 18 passing attempts from Christian Chapman.  I want to see 200+ yards from Mr. Chapman.  I’m greedy.

Speaking of greedy, the Aztec defense is phenomenal.  San Jose is team #2 without a touchdown against the Red and Black.  Three consecutive games result in a total of 13 points by UNLV, Fresno State and San Jose State.  Impressive.  Nine tackles for loss including five sacks against the Spartans (whose offense was rather spartan.  Get it?).  209 yards allowed (San Jose rushed for less than 70 yards).  Incredible.

Also incredible in these days of players running rampant with bad judgment and at times engaging in criminal behavior (yeah, I’m talking about you, Baylor University), Rocky means what he says and says what he means as he suspended PRIOR to the San Jose game, Derrick Babiash, Billy Vaughn, Jr. and Fred Melifonwu.  Rare air for a division one coach of any sport.  Hats off to Kalan Montgomery for taking Babiash’s spot without notice.

I applaud San Jose State’s defense for “holding” Donnel Pumphrey to 135 yards.  I’m not mocking the Spartans.  Truly, they did a fine job of containing Donnel, as much as Donnel can be contained.  The flip side is Rashaad Penny averaged 11.7 yards per carry.  Can’t stop everybody.

Finally, I was pleased to see second, third and fourth level guys on the field with nine minutes remaining.  Valuable experience for Jeff Clay, Myles Cheatum, Troy Cassidy, Trenton Thompson, Kyahva Tezino, Kevin Walcott, Sam Tai, Chad Woolsey, Ryan Agnew, Ryan Simmons, Daishawn Dixon and Julian Rochelin.

6-1/3-0.

 

I must continue last week’s rant about our inability to score points.  This limitation is getting ridiculous.  We score a whopping 17 points against a ragged Fresno State defense.  17 points.  No more.  The Aztec offense had the ball for 37 minutes and 19 seconds.  We register 25 first downs.  All we can put on the board is two touchdowns and one field goal?  Boo.  Christian Chapman had 12 passing attempts.  The description of skinny.  I realize Jeff Horton loves the run, and with Donnel Pumphrey and Rashaad Penny, who wouldn’t, but, Jeff needs to call consecutive passing plays every now and then.  I’m not clamoring for the return of Bob Toledo’s multi-chapter playbook, but more frequent looks downfield would result in more points on the board.  David Wells (3/30) and Nick Bawden (2/23) received 5 of Christian’s 7 completions.  If his comfort lies with tight-ends and fullbacks, then let’s throw the ball to tight-ends and fullbacks more often.

More applause for the Aztec defense.  Keeping Fresno State to 217 total yards is notable.  The Bulldogs rushing for less than 100 yards is a further proof (if you need any) of a stellar defense.  The SDSU defensive line battering the Bulldogs offensive line accompanied by linebackers visiting the backfield on a regular basis is a recipe for success. Change nothing.

5-1/2-0.

I shouldn’t complain.  But, can’t we average, say, 27 to 34 points the rest of the way?

 

 

Aztecs 26, Rebels 7

Posted: October 10, 2016 in Uncategorized

Back on track.  Mostly.  Am I about to complain?  Mildly.  How and why the Aztec offense did not put the ball in the end zone at least twice more (I’m not greedy) was of concern.  I found concerning for the long-term our inability to score only three offensive touchdowns against UNLV.  Sure, the Rebels are much improved, but I don’t find their defense to be anything more than average . . . at best.  Given the fact we had the ball for 16+ minutes more than the Rebels is another bit of proof we were a no-show in the end zone.  We should (a dangerous word) have scored more and often.

Hats off to John Baron.  Who follows a 48 yard make with a 50 yard make?  John Baron, thank you very much.  Nice leg.

The SDSU defense was superb.  Consider the following:  UNLV finds only 9 first downs (1 of the 9 was due to an Aztec penalty) to couple with 9 total passing yards.  I believe one leads to the other.  The Rebels ran for 113 yards.   And now for the total yardage, 113, add 9 carry the one, 122 yards of total offense.  Absolutely dominating.

Donnel Pumphrey and Rashaad Penny were a dynamic one-two punch.  251 yards between two running backs, both 100+ is testament to talent and great blocking from the offensive line and receivers.  Christian Chapman bounced back nicely from his less than stellar result against South Alabama.  15/20 with no interceptions and one touchdown is solid play.

How about 33,296 fans in attendance?  Not bad.  And a decent dose of that number was in the student section.  Our home attendance total is in the vicinity of 115,000 after three games.  Healthy.  Dare we eclipse 35,000 for a MWC game later this year?  The heights are dizzying.

4-1/1-0.

 

South Alabama was the better team.  We were flat and completely unable to gather any momentum.  We were ugly.  Butt ugly.  Let us have no more of this ugliness.

Christian Chapman had his most ineffective game as an Aztec.  13/22/159 is as unappealing as a flat beer on a hot day.  Yuck.  Sure, Christian was rushed (no pun intended) with four sacks and I lost track of hurried attempts which lent to his challenge.  Strangely, when reading our rushing stats, you would think we had a chance which we did.  Donnel’s line was 25/151 for an average of 6 yards per rush while Rashaad was 9/66 which was just shy of 7 yards per carry.  Impressive.  But, we could not score those things called touchdowns.

Recall, we were up 24-21 at the end of three.  Sadly, only South Alabama played during the fourth quarter.  The Aztecs went into self-destruct mode.  We were a 3:00 a.m. Trump tweet.  The fourth quarter featured 1/5 on third downs.  We were 2/10 overall.  Only 10 third downs the entire game.  The first and second quarters registered a whopping 8:39 minutes of Aztec ball possession.  That’s 4:19.5 seconds per quarter.  A perfect time frame for a sputtering offense to remain lost in the fog of incompetence.  Yet, we ran two more plays than the Jaguars (63-61).  The penalty idiocy continues (10/85).  Two lost fumbles.  The aforementioned four sacks.  Ugly.

All of this before mentioning the difficult night of Ryan Simmons.  Until that snap over Tanner Blain’s head, we had a chance.  The chance stopped dead when the long snap stopped rolling inside the five.  Jaguar’s score.  Ugly.

The SDSU defense made the South Alabama qb look like a four-year starter rather than a little shaver making his first start.  Only five incompletions (16/21/242) to go with 3 touchdowns.  He averaged 15.1 yards per completion against the back eight.  He stretched us until we snapped.  Three times.  As for the South Alabama rushing game, they didn’t have one.  89 yards total (2.2 ypc).  Yet, they score 42 points!  Of course, 7/13 on third down creates a lot of second chances of which they took full advantage as I refer you back to the score.

Kudos to the Jags.  They beat us consecutive years.

Now MW play begins.  May the boys be angry and focused against UNLV.  Feel the sting of losing to a team we coulda, shoulda, woulda beat.

3-1.