San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec




San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

Football faces Idaho State, looking to build off impressive win in opener

SDSU faces an FCS opponent that they knocked off 38-7 last year in the second of a three-game homestand to open the season
San+Diego+State+kicker+Jack+Browning+%2813%29+kicks+out+of+the+hold+of+Zechariah+Ramierez+%2849%29+on+Saturday%2C+Aug.+26+at+Snapdragon+Stadium.+Both+Browning+and+linebacker+Cody+Moon+earned+Mountain+West+Player+of+the+Week+honors+after+the+Aztecs+beat+Ohio+20-13+in+week+zero.
Jesse Gordon
San Diego State kicker Jack Browning (13) kicks out of the hold of Zechariah Ramierez (49) on Saturday, Aug. 26 at Snapdragon Stadium. Both Browning and linebacker Cody Moon earned Mountain West Player of the Week honors after the Aztecs beat Ohio 20-13 in week zero.

The San Diego State Aztecs began their season with an eye-popping 20-13 win over the Ohio Bobcats.

SDSU (1-0) continues its three-game home stand at Snapdragon Stadium as they face off against the Idaho State Bengals. 

PLAYERS TO WATCH:

On the offensive side of the ball, tight end Mark Redman is coming off a dominant week zero performance in which he hauled in five receptions for 62 yards and found the endzone twice. 

Quarterback Jalen Mayden spoke on his early chemistry with his emerging tight end at a press conference Tuesday.

“I kind of built it up through the offseason,” Mayden said. “Just a couple of times we’ve stayed after practice and I’m seeing how high (Redman) can actually jump or how far his reach radius is if I throw it back shoulder.”

For the defensive side of the ball, linebacker Cody Moon, who was named Mountain West Player of the Week, led the 3-3-5 Aztecs base defense with 12 tackles in last week’s win.

SDSU’s other Mountain West Player of the Week, Jack Browning, is the “do-it-all” kicker for the Aztecs. Last week, Browning was responsible for eight of SDSU’s 20 points, recorded three punts of over 50 yards and handled the kickoff duties.

For Idaho State, junior quarterback Hunter Hays and junior running back Raiden Hunter, are both returning players that provide a veteran presence to a team that brought back only 40 players from the previous season. Hays posted 140 passing yards in last year’s contest while Hunter contributed 53 yards on the ground. 

KEY STAT:

The Aztecs have won 48 of their last 50 games including 17 consecutive when they win the turnover battle. 

Head coach Brady Hoke stressed the importance of winning the turnover battle at the weekly press conference before Saturday’s matchup.

“(We) did a good job protecting the ball,” Hoke said. “Then our defense did a nice job getting the ball back. We were plus-two in turnover margin a year ago. (Ohio) were plus-twelve throughout the season, so that was a big emphasis.”

KEY MATCHUP:

In last year’s matchup, the Aztecs offensive line dominated the Bengals defensive line in the trenches, paving the way for the running backs to finish with a total of 380 rushing yards. The wealth was spread around as eight different ball carriers contributed to the total. 

Be on the lookout for a new game plan from Idaho State as they revamped their coaching staff from last year. Cody Hawkins, formerly the offensive coordinator at UC Davis, takes charge of the Bengals as a first-time head coach.

Kickoff for the second Aztecs home game is at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 2 at Snapdragon Stadium.

About the Contributor
Mac Pham, Staff Writer
Mac Pham is a Journalism major and a senior transfer student from Palomar Community College. He joined the Daily Aztec in 2023. Writing stories, story telling, reading and talking to people is something he enjoys doing, so he figured why not talk sports with that. His favorite aspect of sports writing is being an analyst and breaking down the details of a football or a basketball game. In his spare time, Mac is an avid swimmer and likes to play basketball. He hopes to be a sports writer whose calling card is writing articles filled with sports analysis. Mac is bilingual in Vietnamese.