Archive for October, 2017

Back on track.  Pointed in the right direction.  And similar thoughts.

What was encouraging?  The defensive line was camped in the Hawaii offense the entire night.  The rush was deep, the linebackers were quick to fill the rare gap and the defensive backfield was hitting hard.

Proof?

Sure.

0-7-0-0 was Hawaii’s scoring line.  12 first downs (4 were penalty gifts.  That’s 33% for the   math people.  And only 1 was of the rushing variety).  The Hawaii offense was a meager 2/14 on third downs.  The Rainbow Warriors averaged 1.5 yards per run and 35 rushing yards the entire game.  Speaking of the entire game, Hawaii had a total of 195 yards in offense (3.5 yards per play).  Finally, Hawaii suffered 7 three and out offensive series.  Stuff city.  How is that for proof?  I thought so.

A tip of the hat to Dwayne Johnson, Jr who started in place of Parker Baldwin.  Mr. Johnson added a degree of intensity sorely needed after consecutive losses and served as proof that Rocky Long waits for no one to rediscover his passion for the game of football.  Of further note was the first half play of JJ Glass (who entered the game as the fifth and last listed defensive tackle on the almighty depth chart), Anthony Luke, Kyahva Tezino, Ryan Dunn and Andrew Aleki.  Well done.

As for the offense, Rashaad Penny and Juwan Washington returned to form via the offensive line.  Keith Ismael switching to right guard in place of the injured Antonio Rosales and Dominic Gudino moving from the #2 left guard to starting center bodes well for football brains and ability.  Complain and moan all you want about the youth of the line, but I find the future to be compelling and dominant given the overall play of Mr. Ismael and Mr. Gudino as well as Tyler Roemer, Daishawn Dixon, Ryan Pope and Joe Salcedo (none of whom are seniors).

The SDSU offense in a nutshell was featured during the second drive of the first quarter.  First down via a catch, then run, then catch, then run, run again and Juwan Washington finding the end zone.  Pure beauty.

7-2/3-2.  Get the best bowl possible.  Go Aztecs.

 

 

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Bulldogs 27, Aztecs 3

Posted: October 23, 2017 in Uncategorized

So much for a convincing Aztec comeback from the Boise spanking.  We were as bad as the Boise game.

Fresno State ran the ball up the middle time and again for 6, 8, 10 yards and more.  Our linebackers were slo slow, so slo they could not get to the “w”.  Fresno State’s qb had one killer long toss after another.  Three Bulldog wide receivers had catches of 30, 33 and 48 yards respectively.  Their qb averaged better than 17 yards per completion.  The Aztec defense was present, yet elsewhere.  In the sense of fog and a disappointing attempt to gather much water.

The other side was equally bad.  For consecutive games our offensive line was inept.  No idea what to do or who to block.

“I was supposed to take the linebacker?”

“Oh, that’s what coach Schmidt means by ‘good feet’?”

“Who am I?”

Rashaad Penny returning kickoffs was a picture of a man gazing at a menu for twenty minutes and then “Ahh.  I’m not sure.  I can’t decide.” the fourth time the waiter asks if he’s ready to order.  Stutter stepping out of the end-zone is an ineffective method to develop a meaningful stride.  If you doubt my wisdom, recall average field positions of 20, 24 and 22 yards in three of four quarters.

Again, Christian Chapman in the pocket is a disaster.  Christian must be on the run parallel to the line of scrimmage at all times.  When he stands still for more than three seconds expect a sack (4 if you were counting) or a gain of a yard.

In a word, AAAARRRRRGGGGHHHH!!!!!!!

6-2/2-2.

 

Boise 31, Aztecs 14

Posted: October 15, 2017 in Uncategorized

Ugly.  Butt ugly.

Boise’s defensive line dominated the Aztec offensive line.

And, the Boise offensive line toyed with the Aztec defensive line.

They ran over us both ways.  Speaking of running, we could not establish any offensive momentum.  Sure, Christian Chapman threw for 240 yards on 12 completions, but that was the only bright spot.

Every punt and kickoff seemed to land at the 10-yard line.  The Aztecs were laying down looking up most of the night.  Getting clobbered will necessitate that posture.

Time to get well against Fresno State.  I anticipate a motivated, focused Aztec football team in a bad mood next Saturday night at the Murph.

6-1/2-1.  Go Aztecs.

 

 

We remain undefeated.  We remain in first place in the West division.  Yet, I feel the need to complain, nay, bitch.

Why?

Because I’m spoiled by all the winning?  I don’t know.  All I do is pace in front of the tube as the game unfolds.  I scowl.  I frown.  I utter “Come on” quite often during the game.  I seem unreasonable.

Yet, I believe we could play a perfect game.  The Aztecs have the defensive talent to keep 0 on the board for all four quarters (just as the boys did during the third and fourth quarters against the Rebels).  Perhaps a shutout will shut me up.

As for the game, Quest Truxton actually returned punts.  He gained 54 yards on the 5 he returned.  A pleasant return to last year.  Run, Quest, run.  Speaking of running, Rashaad Penny (27/170), Juwan Washington (10/95) and Chase Jasmin (introducing himself during the fourth quarter with 5/29 and his first Aztec touchdown) proved the offensive line is getting better.

Mikah Holder had his best game to date with 9 catches for 144 yards and a whole lot of running after catching  the football.

Of note was Isaac Lessard starting in place of Nick Bawden at fullback.  Did Nick have a bad week of practice?  Joe Salcedo also started for the first time this year.  Let us color this development as “depth”.

Noble Hall, Sergio Phillips, Myles Cheatum, Dakota Turner and Damon Moore are cycling well through the three defensive linemen spots.  Not a bit of drop off among those five.  Well done.

I was pleased to see Jeff Horton insert second and third depth chart guys with 4:27 remaining.  Nothing beats road experience.

Bowl eligible already.  Who knew?

6-0/2-0.  Go, Aztecs.

 

 

This game was Catch-22.  Nothing made sense, but the outcome . . . because this game was Catch-22.

One team generates 429 total yards in 86 offensive plays while the other crawls to 263 total yards.  One team holds the ball for 34+ minutes.  The other 25:33.  One team is an impressive 8/17 on third downs.  The other a pathetic 1/14.  And, for further consideration, that team with 263 yards, 25 minutes of possession and 1/14 on third down punts the ball 10 times.  That team wins.  How?  Why?  Who cares?  We won.  But, we should have lost.

What saved us was 3 interceptions for 127 yards (almost half of what the Aztec offense, um, created) and 1 touchdown along with 4 sacks for 30 yards.  That is 157 yards of defense which is far more than half of what the guys with the football are supposed to do.  Do note, the defense kept NIU out of the end zone in the fourth quarter.  A great time to be effective.

We went from zero penalties against Air Force to a staggering 10/126.  The refs were not pro-Aztec.

Congrats to Dominic Gudino starting in place of Antonio Rosales at right guard.  Congrats to Andrew Aleki covering the NIU fumble in the first quarter that led to a Rashaad Pennuy touchdown the next play.  Congrats to Collin Andrews for joining Tim Wilson and Isiah Macklin in the redshirt-freshmen receiver rotation.

Dakota Turner returns as if he had never missed a snap.  Well done, Mr. Turner.  Jay Henderson had the game of his Aztec life.  And did we need that game.

35,717 in attendance.  Not bad when the opponent is a MAC team.  By the way, if Northern Illinois does not win the MAC, I will be most perplexed.  These guys are good.  A bowl game awaits.

5-0/1-0.  Go Aztecs.