Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Scouting the 2011 opponents: San Diego State

On October 8th, the Frogs will make their 4th and final trip to play San Diego State as a member of the Mountain West. And although Qualcomm Stadium has been Amon Carter West over the years (TCU is 3-0 against the Aztecs there and has also won two Poinsettia Bowls in the stadium), this trip represents one of the most dangerous games of the 2011 schedule.

SDSU was one of the big turnaround stories of the 2010 season, improving on their 4-8 mark in '09 by finishing 9-4 and winning their first bowl game since 1969. Although head coach Brady Hoke has now departed to Michigan and their two star receivers to the NFL, the Aztecs still have a lot of talent left over from the team that gave the Frogs their biggest scare of 2010.

Grabbing most of the attention for SDSU is sophomore tailback Ronnie Hillman. Although he managed only 54 rush yards against the Frogs last year, he finished his freshman season with 1,532 yards and 17 TDs...including 6 games of 150+ yards and two of 200+. He played last year at 175lbs but has reportedly bulked up to 195. Under Patterson, TCU has historically done well against elite running backs- but Hillman will definitely put that streak to the test.

The other main names to know are Rocky Long, Ryan Lindley and Miles Burris. Long, who was previously the head coach at New Mexico (where he went 0-4 against TCU) from 1998-2008, takes over for Hoke as head coach in San Diego after two years as their defensive coordinator. Lindley is a 6-4, NFL prospect QB who has thrown for 9,537 yards and 67 TDs in his three years as starter- including the two 4th quarter bombs that nearly derailed the Frogs' season last fall. Burris is a 6-3, 240 Lombardi Award watch-list linebacker who led the Aztecs with 80 tackles and 9.5 sacks last year.

Productive Facebook Creepin'

I was tipped off by a Spit Blood reader that my recent "Taking Inventory" post about wide receivers and tight ends may already be out of date, and we have good old fashioned facebook creepin' to thank for the opportunity to correct ourselves. It appears that Antonio Graves, whom the roster still lists as a safety, has moved to wide receiver...or at least that's what he told one of his friends on his facebook page. No reason not to believe him, right? At 6-2, 222, Graves will be one of the bigger targets in the pass game- and given the versatility and athleticism he displayed in high school, Fuenderson must be very happy with the new weapon they've just acquired.

Morning Dump