2019 San Diego State University Aztecs season preview.
Nearing the end of summer, leaves begin to change colors, school starts again, and most importantly, Aztec football is back for their 2019 campaign.
Let’s take a quick look at the team.
Coming off a 7-6 record in 2018, the Aztecs are hungry for a better showing in the coming season, with an offense highlighted by returning quarterback Ryan Agnew and tailback Juwan Washington, a rusher many Aztec fans will hope carries on the tradition of great Aztec running backs, following names such as Rashaad Penny and Donnel Pumphrey.
Debuting in a 28-21 victory over Arizona State last season, Agnew carries a 6-1 career record, the 6th-best winning percentage among qualifying active FBS quarterbacks. A rare combination of an ability to make long gains while still conserving possession of the football, Agnew finished 3rd in highest yards per completion among qualifying Group of Five quarterbacks in 2018, with 14.36 YPC, while only throwing six interceptions on the season. This senior quarterback with high expectations on him looks to come up big for SDSU this year.
Juwan Washington looks to follow in the footsteps of aforementioned Donnel Pumphrey and Rashaad Penny, though Washington has a distinct advantage over Penny. Like Pumphrey, he started his junior year. With a full year to get used to starting in Rocky Long’s offense, Washington is prepared to unload on defenses this season. With nearly 1,000 yards last season, Long should make certain Washington gets his touches and assumes his place as a key offensive weapon.
Defense Wins Championships
San Diego State’s defense features linebacker Kyahva Tezino and field warrior/safety, Tariq Thompson
With two seasons under his belt, Thompson has been a feature of the Aztec defense since day one of his true freshman season, starting in all 26 games SDSU has played since his joining the team, leading all active Aztecs in consecutive starts. Adept at taking the ball away, Thompson is 3rd among active FBS players in Interceptions per Game. Also, the hard-hitter has forced three fumbles in his two-year career. A defense with Tariq Thompson in their secondary is a defense you do not want to mess with.
Kyahva Tezino, middle linebacker, has a resume that speaks for itself. 2018 First-Team All-Mountain West, 2018 SDSU John Simcox Memorial Trophy Most Valuable Player, 2017 Sports Illustrated All-Bowl Team. The kid is dominant. Ranked as high as 18th on inside linebacker draft boards, Tezino is a potential NFL talent and is ready to continue his attack on Mountain West offenses in 2019.
Season Outlook and Projections:
Week 1: vs. Weber State | Projection: Win
Week 2: @ UCLA | Projection: Win
Week 3: @ New Mexico State | Projection: Win
Week 4: vs. Utah State | Projection: Loss
Week 5: OPEN
Week 6: @ Colorado State | Projection: Win
Week 7: vs. Wyoming | Projection: Win
Week 8: @ San Jose State | Projection: Win
Week 9: @ UNLV | Projection: Win
Week 10: OPEN
Week 11: vs. Nevada | Projection: Win
Week 12: vs. Fresno State | Projection: Loss
Week 13: @ Hawai’i | Projection: Win
Week 14: vs. Brigham Young | Projection: Win
Week 15: OPEN
Projected Record: 10-2 (6-2)
The Aztecs goal for the season should be an NY6 (New Year’s Six) bowl game. Regardless, the Aztecs will look to excite this season and bounce back from a 7-6 year, bringing confidence back to the doubters of SDSU football.