Every year, SDSU holds a Red & Black Spring Game on the San Diego State University campus. The game is a scrimmage between the first team offense + second team defense (Red squad) and second team offense + first team defense (Black squad). More than just a practice, the game offers a peek at how the Aztecs might look when the regular season begins.
Based on 2012's Red & Black Spring Game, expect defense to be the focus of the Aztecs this season. The Black squad scored the victory with just one score - a 36-yard touchdown thrown by sophomore Adam Dingwell to junior Tim Vizzie. Otherwise, the defense dominated, forcing two fumble turnovers and intercepting senior QB Ryan Katz twice.
Katz, a transfer from Oregon State, entered the game as the favorite for the vacant quarterback spot. Of course, Ryan Lindley left some pretty big shoes to fill. Katz looks to be a stop-gap solution at the position. He's a senior, who is no doubt talented, but best used in the meantime as Rocky Long develops a starter for the next couple of years. Whether that's sophomore Adam Dingwell, freshman Matt Morin, or freshman Chad Jeffries remains to be seen.
Right now though, Ryan Katz is the unofficial starting quarterback for the Aztecs. And he struggled in the Red & Black Scrimmage. Katz threw for just a 22% completion percentage, with 2 interceptions and 0 touchdowns. He received the lion's share of snaps, with 23 pass attempts. Adam Dingwell received the second most, completing just 2 of 8 attempts, for 41 yards and a touchdown.
Both Ryan Katz interceptions were made by redshirt freshman Darius Guillory, a huge bright spot during the scrimmage. Senior linebacker Scott Graves also had a good game, with six tackles and two recovered fumbles.
It should be mentioned that the game was played in a rare San Diego downpour, which certainly contributed to the poor play of the Aztecs' quarterbacks.
Along with Ryan Katz's emergence as the primary QB, Adam Muema has asserted himself as a replacement for stud RB Ronnie Hillman. Muema carried the ball 6 times for 28 yards. Of course, Rocky Long has said all offseason that he'll be rotating three or four RBs per game. Brandon Wright looked decent, with 34 yards off 9 carries. Hopefully Muema and Wright can fill the role well until senior Walter Kazee comes back from injury.