BYU Defeats SDSU 28-14 After Repeated Aztec Errors

BYU Defeats SDSU 28-14 After Repeated Aztec Errors

San Diego State

BYU Defeats SDSU 28-14 After Repeated Aztec Errors


BYU Defeats SDSU 28-14 After Repeated Aztec Errors

The Aztecs risk missing a Bowl bid after ten straight appearances.

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Overrated or not: BYU deserved a victory.

Provo, UT-  The San Diego State Aztecs  (4-4, 4-2 MW) lost 28-14 to the #14 BYU Cougars(10-1) in Provo on Saturday night.  After an up-and-down season for the Aztecs, this outcome was not surprising.

BYU quarterback Zach Wilson played rock solid and threw for 303 yards and three touchdowns to lead BYU to victory.

Lopini Katoa contributed 136 all-purpose yards for the Cougars who shut down the Aztecs for the final three quarters of the game.  Aztecs fans might argue instead that SDSU shut themselves out.

Aztec Quarterback Jordan Brookshire passed for 231 yards and a touchdown to lead San Diego State. Kaegun Williams added 91 yards and a touchdown on the ground.

The Aztecs gave up 21 unanswered points after taking a first-quarter 14-7 lead.  How?  BYU got stops and forced critical turnovers stifling the Aztecs.  The Aztecs made a comedy of errors including a missed handoff turned into an interception in scoring range; fumble, two turnovers-on-downs, falling down in the snow, a botched snap, and more. These repeated flubs fully prevented SDSU from making it a much better match.

Even without 3 quarters of productivity, the Cougars did not create a two-possession cushion until a 20-yard catch by Isaac Rex provided a 28-14 lead with 10:53 left in the game.   So, repeatedly, with this game in the Aztecs reach they were their own worst enemies.

Late in the fourth quarter, the Aztecs had a shot to cut the deficit in half after driving to the BYU 1. Brookshire tripped and fell when he cut toward the end zone on 4th-and-goal, turning it over on downs with 2:51 left.

The Aztec Nation has to come to terms with the fact that the Rocky Long era is over.

From the opening kickoff of the game, BYU marched down the field on its opening possession. Wilson completed five passes, culminating in a 5-yard toss to Dax Milne, to give the Cougars a quick 7-0 lead.

San Diego State wasted no time taking control through the rest of the first quarter.

The Aztecs evened the score when effortlessly Williams carved outside and raced 25 yards to the end zone. Then, after gaining a first down on a very well-executed fake field goal attempt, San Diego State surged ahead 14-7 on a diving 15-yard catch by Elijah Kothe.

Tariq Thompson recovered a fumble from Isaac Rex at the BYU 33 to set up Koithe’s touchdown grab after Michael Shawcroft stripped the ball from the Cougar tight end.

Drew Jensen registered first career interception when he picked off Brookshire’s pass at the BYU 20-yard line just as the Aztecs appeared poised to add to their lead by another touchdown.

Brookshire’s intercepted pass followed a botched handoff where the tailback was on the wrong side of the play caller.  The turnover opened the door for Rex’s touchdown catch a few plays later, and shifted the game’s momentum.

BYU tied it up on Wilson’s 2-yard strike to Isaac Rex in the second quarter.

Lopini Katoa then took it 43 yards on 4th-and-1 to set up a scoring play. BYU went back ahead 17-14 when Jake Oldroyd made a 50-yard field goal on the final play of the first half.

It was all downhill from there.

Zach Wilson and the BYU Cougars were able to put up 28 points against a very good Aztecs defense and sent them back to San Diego with a loss.

Despite the loss, SDSU still held the ball for 36:43 of the game.

Overrated or not: BYU deserved a victory.

For the Aztecs: the talent is on the field- but the confidence is not.  The certainty to prevail that Rocky Long emanated in a center-of-the-field, downhill brand of “try to stop us” ball, needs to be re-established.

Ten out of ten times believing you will win is a prerequisite to winning.

San Diego State has wrapped its regular season. Time will tell if they are given Bowl consideration in this unusual, abbreviated season.  If nothing else, the Aztecs make it interesting.


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