(Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images) Coming out of the fog last year, Keith Price cleared things up real quickly with a simple answer: BRING IT ON! The fog is thicker this year, but we are all hoping for the same answer.
"The time has come," the Walrus said,
"To watch opponents scream:
As Price drives down the field with ease--
And Shelton eats their team;
They'll shrink and cower every snap--
For CRUSHED will be their dreams."
-Author Unkown ... whoever wrote it should find a publisher ... yesterday
Game time is 7:30 p.m PT tomorrow. All I can say is it's about time!
LET'S DO THIS!
more after the jump ...
According to GoogleFight, the Huskies are the clear winners this weekend ... check it out!
The Aztecs are 0-2 against the Huskies in this long and storied rivalry. In 1982 the Dawgs clobbered the Aztecs 46-25. Then, in 1997, when the Aztecs came to town, Brock Huard ate them for lunch (16-22 for 313 yards, 4TDs and 0 interceptions). Final score: 36-3.
Last year, San Diego State finished was 8-5, 4-3 in the Mountain West; they played in the New Orleans Bowl against Louisiana-Lafayette, where they lost 32-30 on a last second field goal that reduced to a paltry 50 yarder because of an "illegal stemming" penalty called on the Aztecs with 4 seconds remaining.
The Aztecs are young. They lost their bruiser of a running back, Ronnie Hillman, and quarterback, Ryan Lindley last year to the draft. They have to replace three seniors on the offensive line (both tackles). Coach Rocky shared his perception on it (here you go): he's hoping the young team can "play at the level of competition" sooner rather than later, but presumes it will take a couple of weeks of "getting beat around" for that to happen. Look for the Huskies to oblige.
The Aztecs had no film to review as it tried to prepare for the Husky defense this week. So, they prepared for "everything ...." Is that even possible? I would have stayed with their 3-3-5, personally.
What to Watch for:
The Aztecs run a 3-3-5 defense, which can be thoroughly confusing for opposing offensive lines. Picking up assignments can be particularly difficult. Watch our o-line, this game has the potential to be messy for our young guys.
Will the Aztecs punt or kick field goals? Coach Long said he's contemplating bucking conventional football wisdom. He's not going to punt if the offense crosses the 50 yard line. We'll see how long that lasts, I'm not sure his team has the athleticism to make 4th and long, or even 4th and not long, two out of three times (read at your own risk).
Look for the Huskies to put a TON of pressure on Aztec quarterback Ryan Katz. They are breaking in a new line (the left tackle converted from tight end), and a new quarterback (Katz needed to learn a new offense). See how many ways Wilcox will pressure Katz. It could get ugly. Fast.
Questions we Want Answers to:
Defense: What will the defense look like? Will it be better than last year? Can we have a consistent pass rush? Will we have consistent press coverage? Will they be able to stop the run? Can the linebackers hold up? Is the line deep enough to go the whole game?
Offense: Will the Dawgs be able to replace the production of "War Daddy?" Will the O-line be able to protect Mr. Price? Will the line get some push? Will our skill positions help the offense keep up the pace it had last year, or even improve on it?
Other Questions: Will the rough schedule kill the young team? Who will replace Nick Holt's persona on the sideline? Should that persona ever be replicated? Should anyone ever wear shorts that short?
But what fun is football without any questions? That, folks, is why we actually play the game.
Fall is in the air, and yes, Dawg fans, the time has come indeed.