Friday, September 23, 2011

Who Are You and Why Do We Care?: San Diego State

Rather than focusing on the Offense and Defense as the Michigan Wolverines prepare to face the San Diego State Aztecs, here is a quick look at everything else, and a huge change of pace from the norm here at Holdin’ The Rope.

When did we see them last?
San Diego State has played in Ann Arbor one other time, in 2004. One week after losing to Notre Dame, San Diego State gave the Wolverines a run for their money. Going into half time, the Aztecs lead 21 - 17. Freshman Quarterback Chad Henne threw a touchdown pass to Braylon Edwards early in the second half which would hold up for the rest of the game. Mike Hart ran for 121 yards and Braylon gained 130 yards along with two touchdowns to become Michigan’s career leading wide receiver.

What do they look like?
The Aztec’s official colors are Black and Scarlett. Their uniform combination has ended up on a few ugliest uniforms lists. In stark contrast to the best helmet in football, the Aztec’s helmet leaves much to be desired. The black on black look is pretty terrible, which is embarrassing because they have been using it forever. The white jersey is better, but lacks style. I’m also not a fan of the red outline around the white outline on the numbers and letters.

Have they had good coaches?
Well their current coach is Rocky Long. He has been coaching since the 70s and was the head coach at New Mexico from 1998-2008. He lead the Lobos to five bowl games in six years from 2002-2007. After the 2007 season, he resigned, and joined the staff of a lovable finger-pointing man whom I think you may know... When Brady was selected as the University of Michigan Head Coach, San Diego State selected Long, Hoke’s Defensive Coordinator, to replace him. Much of Hoke’s staff followed him to Michigan, and Long was forced to replace almost an entire staff.

Did anyone famous every play there?
  • Joe Gibbs - NFL Head Coach for the Washington Redskins.
  • Herm Edwards - NFL Head Coach for the Kansas City Chiefs and New York Jets, and now annoying ESPN talking head.
  • John Fox - NFL Head Coach for the Carolina Panthers, and now Denver Broncos.
  • Sean Payton - NFL Head Coach for the New Orleans Saints.
  • Marshall Faulk - NFL Running Back for the St. Louis Rams.
  • Az-Zahir Hakim (my personal favorite) - Former NFL Wide Receiver for the Rams, Lions, Saints, Lions (again), Chargers, and Dolphins.

Do they have any weird/interesting traditions?
Since September 25, 1930, 75% of the Aztecs’ games have been played at night. 

They are called the Aztecs. Have they ever had a super racist Native American logo?

San Diego State is no cupcake. They will not just roll over and let us win because their former Head Coach and most of their coordinators are now wearing Maize and Blue rather than Black and Scarlet. Hoke left a good team in place in Southern California, but Michigan should still come out on top. Prediction based on everything, but football: 24-14 Michigan.

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