Editor’s note: This feature will be used as a compliment to the great work Alex is doing “on the Aztec beat” with his pre and post game coverage. Christian has agreed to pop in from time to time when he’s not covering local high school sports (seriously, he covers seemingly everything) and thus we’re bringing back his grading of the Aztecs. Check it out.
Saturday the San Diego State Aztec football season opened on a night where the biggest
fireworks came courtesy fo the post game sky show. And now that the dust has settled from an underwhelming and somewhat troubling 6-0 win over Weber State for the Aztecs the grades are in for week 1.
Quarterback (B-) Ryan Agnew certainly has the mobility to avoid pressure and try to make things happen, plus getting to see him throw both often and deep was nice change of pace. If the run game can step it up in the coming weeks Agnew should get better looks from his receivers and the production should increase.
Running Back (C) No one even came close to the 100 yard mark. With Juwan Washington pounding away on most down and Jordan Byrd coming in as the change of pace the signs of a productive combo are there but in week 1 sort fo felt like the generic brand version of what Aztec fans have seen in the past few seasons.
Wide Receivers (B) Lots of new names to learn here, but it does feel kind of exciting to know that Ryan Agnew is an equal opportunity employer when it comes to ball distribution. Even if no one receiver emerges as a legit number 1 option this should be a very positive sign for Aztec fans that the depth chart has skill and competence on it.
Offensive Line (C+) First drive of the season there were communication issues with the snap count and I deduct from the line on that. On multiple occasion the broadcasters complimented Ryan Agnew on his ‘Brett Favre’ esque improv style as he got away from pressure to complete a broken play and while that might be acceptable against an NFL defense thats a bad sign against Weber State. The biggest improvement to week 2 needs to be with the line if the Aztecs want to compete this season.
Defensive Line (B) When you hold a team to zero points and only 154 total yards of offense it’s a solid night. I was looking for a little better pressure in the backfield from the line, but maybe that falls on scheme more than skill. Only negative is no sacks on the night.
Linebackers (A) Lots of tackles, lots of stops at the line. This linebacking group will, as always, be the workhorse of Rocky Long’s defense and week 1 was a solid showing of athleticism and speed. Same question for the D-Line in terms of the sacks, but in the end they set Weber State out.
Secondary (B+) Hello again Tariq Thompson how we missed hearing your name in the off season, this kid will be the heart and soul of this defense.
Special Teams (B+) You would think they deserve an A for being the only functioning part of the team capable of scoring, and yes Matt Araiza making a pair of field goals counts as the ‘game winners’, but the grade goes down because of a botched snap early in the game taking points off the board.
This Saturday SDSU takes on UCLA, a game that looks increasingly winnable as time goes on, at 1:15 at the Rose Bowl.