The following was posted by Londondomer on Rock’s House.
Ok here is the complete preview of the San Diego State Aztecs that I said I would finish. I watched as much game film of them as I could find on the internet (not a ton) and tried to come up with the best preview I could. Hopefully someone besides myself will find this interesting
#14 Ryan Lindley – 6-3, 205. Fr (RS)
A 3-star, #47 ranked prospect out Lakeside, CA where he attended El Capitan HS. Had offers from smaller schools like UNLV, Boise, Fresno State, etc. As a senior, completed 61 percent of his passes (235-for-385) for 3,521 yards, including 35 touchdowns. Traveled with the team this past year, but never saw any action.
Back-up: #9 Drew Westling 6-2, 220. Jr.
A 3-star who originally signed with Tulsa and redshirted as a freshman. After playing in three games and throwing one pass, he transferred to Southwestern Junior College. Completed over 53 percent of his passes for 2,087 yards and 14 touchdowns.
Analysis: Not much here. Lindley is inexperience and young, which is not a good combination. He was a decently ranked recruit out of high school but is likely to be a mediocre QB at this point in his career. Difficult to tell with nothing out there.
# 24 Brandon Sullivan 5-11, 220. So.
A 3-star, #73 ranked player out of high school, Sullivan had 88 rushes for 373 yards last season (4.0 avg), with 3 TDs and a long of 59 yards. Played as a fullback but has moved over to take the 1st string RB duties.
Back-up: Atiyyah Henderson 5-9, 175. JR.
A small back with decent speed and open field moves. Rushed 44 times for 192 yards (4.2 avg) and 1 touchdown. Disappointing season after rushing for 764 rushing yards in his freshman year.
#23 Tyler Campbell 6-0, 220. SR.
Only had 3 attempts for 6 yards last season and also played special teams. Played in all 12 games last season.
Analysis: The Aztecs will likely run the ball with an inexperienced corp of quarterbacks. Sullivan and Atiyyah should be a decent combination of power and speed, but are not by any means elite backs. The Aztecs leading rusher last season was now-graduated quarterback Kevin O’Connell. Even if ND’s defensive line is in a down year, these backs should not have big games.
LT #74 Mike Matamua 6-5, 280. FR. (RS)
A 3-star, #40 ranked OT coming out of high school, Matamua traveled with the team in 2007 but did not play. Had offers from Colorado, Washington, Utah, etc.
LG #77 Mike Schmidt 6-2, 310. SR.
One of three returning starters on the Aztec offensive line. Was a defensive lineman before moving to the other side of the ball. Started his career as a walk-on who earned a scholarship in Fall 2007.
C #60 Tommie Draheim 6-4, 275. FR. (RS)
Draheim was a no-name recruit out of El Capitan HS in Lakeside, CA. Has not yet seen any action. Inexperienced and undersized.
RG #67 Ikaika Aken-Moleta 6-2, 325. JR.
Had only played in one game in his career during the second half of the 2007 game against Washington State.
RT #79 Kurtis Gunther 6-8, 270. FR. (RS)
A 2-star, unranked OT prospect from Camarillo HS in Camarillo, CA. Did not see any action in 2007.
Analysis: This is an extremely unexperienced unit with only one lineman with significant playing experience and three redshirt freshmen. The Irish defensive line should have their way with this group.
R-Receiver #80 Vincent Brown 6-0, 175. SO.
Had a good freshman campaign, finishing third in Aztec season history in most receptions by a freshman and fourth in most receiving yards. Caught 31 passes for 349 yards (11.3 avg) and 2 touchdowns with a long of 62 yards. Also returned kickoffs, bringing back 25 returns for 547 yards (21.9 avg) with a long of 49 yards.
W-Receiver #4 Darren Mougey 6-6, 225. SR.
Was the teams #2 quarterback in 2005 and 2006 before a season ending injury. Made the move to wide-receiver. Last season caught 32 passes for 368 yards (11.5 avg) and 2 touchdowns.
X-Receiver #6 Mekell Wesley 5-10, 175. JR.
Played in all 12 games last year, but only caught 1 pass for 17 yards. Touted for his speed, but is inexperienced. In 2006, only caught 4 passes in 8 games.
Analysis: This unit features two of the offenses three returning starters. Brown is the biggest threat and will draw the Irish’s best CB. Mougey is a big-target but is not an extremely skilled receiver.
#88 Matthew Kawulok 6-2, 235. JR.
Played in 7 games this past season, catching only 1 pass for 2 yards. Came out of high school as a 2-star LB recruit. Brother plays at Colorado State.
#41 Tony DeMartinis 6-5, 255. JR.
A back-up defensive end for the past two years. DeMartinis just made the switch to tight end during the Spring of 2008.
Analysis: A very weak position for the Aztecs. Both players are inexperienced, with only 1 pass caught between them.
DT #92 Siaosi Fifita 6-4, 250. SR.
Fifita is one of the Aztecs nine returning starters on defense (don’t worry, more on that later). He played in all 12 games, but only had 12 solo tackles and 17 ast. tackles, but he did have 6 tackles for loss. He also was tied as the sack leader with 3 sacks for -16 yards. He also hit the QB twice, making him the Aztecs biggest threat for disrupting the back field. This guy was a one-star TE prospect out of Van Nuys, CA and SDSU was the only school to offer him. Very undersized for a DT. Our bigger offensive line should manhandle him.
DT #66 Ernie Lawson 6-3, 300. SO.
Lawsom will be a first year starter but played in all 12 games last year. He has the size of a more prototypical DT. Last season he had 9 solo tackles and 8 ast. tackles, with two pass breakups. Another local product from Vallejo, CA, Lawson was only offered by SDSU as well. He will take up space in the middle, but in video looks slow and out of shape.
DE #94 B.J. Williams 6-3, 230. SO.
Williams is also a returning starter, and provided the Aztecs with 20 solo tackles, 25 ast. tackles, 4 tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks and 1 forced fumble. Williams is undersized but has decent speed around the edge.
DE #56 Jonathan Soto 6-3, 265. JR.
Again, a returning starter. Last year he has 22 solo tackles, 13 ast tackles, 4.5 TFL, and 3 sacks. From film – he is just not that good. Got all of his sacks against bad teams. Has a stupid haircut.
WLB #32 Andrew Preston 6-1, 220. SO.
Preston, again, is a returning starter and one of their top defenders. Had 40 solo tackles, 32 ast. tackles, 7 TFL, and 1 sack. A decent player on the outside, but not overly physical. I expect our tight ends, when matched up against him, to out muscle him to the ball time and time again.
MLB #35 Luke Laolagi 6-1, 230, JR.
Returning starter. Last season, had 48 solo tackles, 46 ast. tackles, 6 TFL, and 1.5 sacks. Slow to react to pass plays and seems to bite on play action. Fairly aggressive, which actually gets him in trouble sometimes.
SLB #46 Russell Allen 6-3, 235. SR.
The Aztecs’ best linebacker and best defender. Led the team in tackles with 71 solo, 48 ast. tackles, and 5.5 TFL. He also had 1 sack, 1 int, and 6 pass breakups. Big and physical.
CB #43 Aaron Moore 6-0, 190. JR.
Will probably draw the role of covering the Irish’s best WR. Had 42 solo tackles, 17 ast. tackles, and 4.5 TFL. He also had 7 pass breakups and 4 interceptions. Not a bad cover corner, but 190 looks to be very generous. Not physical on the line. If he has to match up with Kamara, the quick out (that was often used with Shark and Stovall) should be very effective.
CB #6 Vonnie Holmes 6-0, 170. SR.
And I thought Moore was skinny. Holmes, for a senior, is an absolute stick out there. Last year, had 21 solo tackles, 5 ast tackles, 0.5 TFL, 4 INTs, and 3 pass breakups. Fairly quickly, but once again, very small and unphysical. Was a JuCo transfer from College of the Canyons.
FS #40 Corey Boudreaux 6-1, 220
Another one of the Aztec’s better defenders, last year Boudreaux had 53 solo tackles, 31 ast tackles, and 3 TFL. He also had three INTs and 8 pass breakups. Is a fairly quick FS, but not overly physical. Was a former walk-on receiver, earning a scholarship in the Fall of 2007.
SS #11 Martrell Fantroy 6-1, 215.
Not a starter, but played in all 12 games last season, notching 15 solo tackles, 2 assisted tackles, and 3 interceptions. Fairly athletic, but undersized (though he is more physical than one would expect).
Analysis: The Aztec offense should be no match for the Irish defense. The Aztecs return only three starters, one of whom was a former walk-on. Not only does the team return only three starters, but few of the players have significant game experience. The offensive line in particular is extremely young and inexperienced. Corwin Browns defense should largely have their way with the overmatched Aztecs. With Tenuta’s influence, the linebackers should find their way to the quarterback early and often. The Aztecs’ QB last year accounted for most of their offensive production and he is gone. I would expect the Aztecs to score fewer than 10 points.
The defense, although it returns almost all of the starters, should be similarly overmatched. Last season, the Aztecs gave up and average of 34.4 ppg against the power houses of the Mountain West. These point totals include 45 against Washington State, 52 against Cincinnati, 55 against Air Force, 45 against TCU, and 48 against BYU. They also gave up an average of 500 yards/gm in total offense, with 256 of that through the air, and 241 on the ground.
Overall, the Aztecs should be clearly overmatched on both sides of the ball. The offense is young and inexperienced. The defense returns nearly every one from a very poor 2007 team that went 4-8 in a weak conference.
The bulk of the Aztecs players come from California after every other team in state (and out) has picked over the bulk of the talent. There is absolutely no reason the Irish should not win by at least 30 points.
My Pick: Irish 42 SDSU 7