Game Recap: Rocky Beane shows he might be too smart for his own good

This probably won’t be the most insightful game recap I’ve ever posted — and if you’ve frequented this site for a while, you know that’s saying something. With the Pac-12 Network unavailable in my market, I was stuck listening to Ted Leitner on the SDSU radio broadcast. That means not only was I unable to see the game with my own eyes, but for most of the game I was in the dark on a few other minor details.

Like down and distance. Or where the ball is spotted. Or how much time was remaining in the FOURTH FUCKING QUARTER.

Fortunately, I could have picked up on the major storyline to come out of tonight’s season-opening 21-12 loss to Washington even if I had been following the action via a Japanese Kabuki reenactment.

So about that new strategy.

Initially, I was supportive of Rocky Long’s decision to lock his kickers and punter in a dog crate when his team faced a fourth down situation in enemy territory. What he neglected to tell us was that extra points were out, too. And chip shot field goals late in the fourth quarter when you desperately need to cut the deficit to one score.

In hindsight, those would have been pertinent details to share. Might have colored my analysis a tad differently.

In fairness, I’ll offer this caveat: The Aztecs probably don’t win this game if Rocky goes with the more conservative calls. But he clearly cost them whatever small chance they had to pull off what would have been a monumental upset for this program. In the end, his foolhardy coaching overshadowed a gutsy performance by the Aztecs’ defense against Keith Price, an inspiring return from injury by Walter Kazee, and another chance to flip the fuck out over a monumental replay booth failure.

What do you have to say for yourself, Rock?

Throwing the chart under the bus, are we? Well it just so happens we obtained a leaked copy of the chart in question.

Damn … it was the chart all along!


Bonus coverage

While I may not have been able to see the game, special guest blogger AztecsAbusingMe (very original, pal) was in Seattle tonight and submits this report — presumably sent from his iPhone in between $3 jager bombs.

In the past four years I’ve been to about as many Aztec away games as home games. It says something important about me. Except I don’t know exactly what it says.

Maybe it shows that displaying Aztec pride as an outnumbered, barely-acknowledged fan gives me some special place in fandom. Maybe it suggests that my time is less valuable than I would like to think. Or maybe it means that I am simply too invested in a lost cause … stuck on the idea that a perennially underachieving team that always comes *thisclose* to a program defining upset can justify the 12 mostly disappointing seasons I’ve spent hoping and praying that I, too, can be a real college football fan.

It is with this mindset that I approached the latest setup for disappointment as the Aztecs traveled to Seattle to take on the Washington Woofs. Perhaps the homeless man yelling at me in Spanish when he saw me with an Aztecs shirt said it best when he told me I wasn’t a real Aztec (in the sense of ethnicity which, arguably, I could pass for), only a supporter of a moribund program that barely reaches mentionable.

My theory of San Diego State football dictates that we are capable of winning, save for a neglect of a mundane but critical aspect of the game. Most of the time that means that an extra point is missed or a completely unnecessary timeout is taken.

What happened tonight, though, was nothing short of shocking. Apparently the 2012 Aztecs lack even the idea of a kicking game. As Dan Hawkins famously said..”it’s division one football!!!.”

How, after everything I have been through as a loyal fan, I can accept this little curveball is nothing short of extraordinary. As it became clear that Ryan Katz and Walter Kazee were perfectly capable of winning if not for the fact that Rocky Long decided that going for two had replaced the extra point as the strategy of choice for aspiring Chip Kelly adherents, I once again thought that we could realistically win. I’ll never learn.

The cool thing about representing your team in a far away and hostile city is that the opposing fans view you as an aberration — a fan of a team who never really was in danger of threatening the victory column. The-not so-cool thing is when your team meets those expectations. Take an interception and a fumble and boneheaded two point conversions and put it all together and something that maybe could have made sense turns into a cold hard verdict on the state of Aztec football.

Mediocre … now and forever.

Well said. But I’m calling bullshit on one thing: There’s no way you understand the Spanish word for ‘moribund.’

About AztecsKillingHim

Aztecskillinghim is a graduate of San Diego State University, which he attended during both the Ted Tollner and Tom Craft eras (five year plan!). For a time, he was convinced that the Aztecs' bowl drought was a direct result of him arriving on campus in 1999. He has two rescued dogs and a patient but foul-mouthed wife who thinks Tim Shelton is "adorable."
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