San Diego State will not three-peat as Mountain West Conference Champions. That was solidified earlier Saturday afternoon when Fresno State edged past a Josh Allen-less Wyoming to win the West Division. Thanks for nothing, Josh Allen. What did we ever do to you?
Elsewhere Saturday, an unexpected win by Kansas State may have muddied SDSU’s path to a Cactus Bowl bid, and thus its larger hopes of playing a name opponent at a non-garbage destination. It was a disheartening day.
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.
One week ago tonight, the Aztecs delivered a huge comeback win against Stanford that we all replayed in our heads and on all our various devices for the entire week. That game was awesome.
Tonight, the Aztecs delivered a huge comeback win against Air Force that I now wish to scrub from my memory using one of those Men In Black neuralyzer things. That game was horrible and can go screw itself.
It had been about 15 minutes since the final gun, since the jubilant mass of students and young(ish) alumni awkwardly hopped the railings from Plaza into the Field Level seats to execute the first STADIUM football field storming since … ever? Maybe ever. Who knows.
A few thousand of us were still milling about in a state of euphoria as an unfamiliar disembodied voice came on the PA and told us, in the most sterile and diplomatic way possible, to get the fuck out. The powers that be expedited this order by herding us through the tunnel in the east end zone.
As we trudged up the crumbling concrete ramp, under hundreds of shoes and work boots dangling from a wire above (who knew?) a student let out his pent-up exuberance with a guttural roar. The hundreds herded into the tunnel immediately took the hint and turned the cramped rat hole into a cacophony of sound.
It was spontaneous. It was beautiful. It was like nothing I had ever seen at a San Diego State football game. I’m willing to bet we’ll never see anything quite like it again.
I pride myself in knowing our readership. As such, I can say one thing for certain: Y’all a bunch of degenerate gamblers. Well, in the spirit of giving the unwashed masses what they want, I’ve set over/unders related to individual and team performances for the 2017 football squad.
If you would like to place actual wagers on these, please meet me in the alley behind the South Campus Plaza Trader Joe’s on Friday at 4 p.m. No cops.
We’ve been waiting in breathless anticipation to see what San Diego State is going to do this year to make the Concrete Tombstone feel like a real home, rather than a crumbling purgatory used to rightfully imprison the most pathetic owner in pro sports. We’ve talked about the possibilities before on the blog, but so far SDSU has been pretty mum on its intentions.
Even at least week’s scrimmage, the most notable change was what wasn’t there.
Notably absent: about four field level sections in south ez. Hope it's permanent. Looks better like this. pic.twitter.com/bJg3Ci50pA
Think back to all the Aztecs season openers against FCS opponents that you can recall. Did you learn anything from those games? In Cal Poly I and II we learned some shit. Same from the Eastern Illinois debacle in 2013. The other ones, though? Do you even remember anything about them?
Yeah, not really. And as I type this, sitting in my living room five minutes after returning from SDSU’s 31-0 win over New Hampshire, I’m not sure I remember much about this one either. Which is fine! The less that is remembered about games like this, the better.