San Diego State beat Air Force 21-17 on a dark and stormy Friday — Friday! — night at the Tombstone. It was a sloppy, sketchy win with a really long pause in the middle of it. Those of us who stayed through the extended lightning delay were then treated to longer commercial breaks punctuated by occasional live football action. Whatever TV audience remained may have been in the tens of thousands, added to the scattered hundreds of diehards and fools left in the stadium.
I’ll give it this much: This is a game past Aztecs teams probably lose. They made enough plays to scratch out Rocky Long’s 69th win as SDSU head coach. No matter how awkward it felt, that’s pretty nice.
According to recent rulings by universally respected institutions such as the Supreme Court of the United States and the NCAA, gambling is actually good. With that important stamp of approval secured I am here once again to provide you with some sweet, sweet action on the 2018 San Diego State football season.
San Diego State will always be a smashmouth, run-first team under Rocky Long and offensive coordinator Jeff Horton, and that’s great. In an age where pass-happy spread offenses and four-hour games are the rule, SDSU’s pro-style, ball control attack makes defenses adjust to an unfamiliar style and typically endure a thoroughly unpleasant 60 minutes. Against inferior competition, the Aztecs tend to grind opponents down to demoralized powder by the second half.
Yet I think Saturday might have exposed the limits of stubborn, tough guy football.