San Diego State’s football team (9-3, 5-3 MW) will take on Central Michigan (8-5, 6-2 MAC) in the New Mexico Bowl on Saturday Dec. 21 at noon.
Here are three keys for the Aztecs to come away with a win over the Chippewas:
1. Continue to dominate the pass and rush defense
Central Michigan’s offense is balanced, but head coach Jim McElwain has relied more on the Chippewas passing game rather than running the ball. This should be no problem for the Aztecs as their outstanding secondary should continue to contain passing offenses. If Central Michigan decides to run the ball more, the Aztecs will be well prepared. SDSU is only allowing their opponents 72.3 rushing yards per game. The Aztecs will need to hold the Chippewas to around 200 yards of total offense in contrast to their opponents average of 445.6 total yards.
2. Balance the offense
The Aztecs have not been able to fully rely on one playmaker throughout the whole season. Instead this talented roster has had numerous players step up when called on launching SDSU to nine wins on the season. Head coach Rocky Long shouldn’t try to fix this offense that isn’t broken. As long as the play-calling is balanced and the snaps are shared among the backs, SDSU should come out with a victory.
3. Don’t underestimate your opponent
Although these teams have played drastically different opponents, the Aztecs should be completely prepared to take on the best effort from Central Michigan. After all the Chippewas are coming off of a loss in the Mid-American Conference Championship and will be looking to come out victorious in their bowl game. This should be SDSU’s most important game of the season as it adds another bowl appearance to their long lost with the opportunity to get another bowl win.