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

Best of State results


Best Sandwich: 4.0 Deli4.0DELI_ML

“It’s all good,” is the slogan of San Diego State’s most popular sandwich shop. Just a short walk from campus, 4.0 Deli has been serving up a slew of creative sandwiches in San Diego since 2001. The restaurant may not seem like much at first glance, but the comfortable booths and laid-back attitude create the perfect environment for taking a break in-between classes.

Upon entering, the dim lighting creates a relaxing atmosphere well-suited for downtime. Sports jerseys and neon signage adorn the walls, contributing to the feel of a perfect college hang out spot. The back room of the deli is also available for reservation, free of charge.

With menu names such as “Ragin’ Cajun” (roast beef, sausage and remoulade dressing), “Mr. Miyagi” (grilled chicken teriyaki) and “Phizzle Chizzle” (turkey, roast beef and grilled onions), everyone is sure to find a favorite. Take your pick from the “Dean’s List” or the “Honor Roll,” or if you’re feeling particularly adventurous, go with an “Undeclared Major” and create your own sandwich from select ingredients. 4.0 Deli also offers vegetarian options, salads and sides.

Of course, no meal is complete without a drink—and sandwiches always taste better when paired with an ice-cold beer. The deli boasts six different beers on tap, poured by the glass or by the pitcher. It should also be noted happy hour is celebrated every day from 2 to 6 p.m.

Put down the books, break the cup of soup habit and see why students voted 4.0 Deli as the best sandwich shop.

“It’s a chill environment. A good college place. Good food, too,” psychology sophomore Kevin O’Brien said

– Caitlin Johnson, Staff Columnist

Best Non-Traditional Date Spot: The Shout! House

Your girl looks perfect tonight, and you’ve been waiting for the chance to show her what you’re made of. You pull up to her place, heart racing. She gets in the car and asks, “Where are we going?” You better not say the movies.

Instead, impress your date by doing something out of the ordinary, such as going to The Shout! House in the Gaslamp Quarter.

Located on Fourth Avenue The Shout! House offers customers live music and drinks in an atmosphere similar to an old Western saloon. The bar area features tables for two lining a wooden rail that extends the length of the building, and keeps cold drinks coming to bar-goers and the dining area it overlooks. But the atmosphere isn’t the only reason The Shout! House’s personality shines through. Whether it’s the description of a specialty drink—The Rick James will get you “Superfreaked”—or a joke from one of the dueling pianists, The Shout! House will give you a good time. Multiple teams of pianists take the stage and duel with musical hits from the 1950s to present day.

But what really makes the night entertaining is how the songs played are decided by audience requests—know what songs your partner likes, request them and sing along for a whimsically romantic date. It’ll also give you a chance to explore each other’s musical interests.

The prices here are quite reasonable compared to the rest of the downtown scene. On Thursday nights there is no cover charge with a current college or military I.D., and drink specials include $3 Miller Lite drafts and $5 Red Bull bomb shots. The rest of the daily specials are listed online at The next time you’re stuck on where to go for date night, take her to The Shout! House for a serenade. You’ll be glad you did

– Ethan Bailey, Features Editor

Best Athlete: Jamaal Franklin

It’s a bird. It’s a plane. No, it’s junior guard Jamaal Franklin. The human highlight reel has mesmerized San Diego State and college basketball fans alike with his improbable dunks.

Franklin first made headlines in the summer of 2011 when he chipped his front tooth on the rim during a dunk attempt in a pickup basketball game. During his sophomore year, he was honored as the MWC Player of the Year and an Associated Press Honorable Mention All-American after averaging 17.4 points and 7.9 rebounds per game, all this after Franklin averaged only 2.9 points and 1.9 rebounds per game in his freshman season on a team that went 34-3 and gained a berth in the Sweet 16.

This season may be Franklin’s masterpiece, though, as he continues to push the envelope. In the first conference game of the season against Fresno State, Franklin threw the ball off the backboard in transition, caught his own pass and dunked it with authority. The dunk was good enough to be the No. 1 play on SportsCenter’s Top Ten plays of the night. His athleticism is bar none the best on campus and his ability to attract attention makes him SDSU’s favorite athlete.

So be sure to see Franklin play this season while you have a chance. There are no guarantees he will be back on Montezuma Mesa next season as a senior with the NBA calling. Regardless, we’ll be seeing him on SportsCenter’s Top Ten plays for years to come.

– Ryan Schuler, Sports Editor


Best Study Spot: Love Library

When it’s finally time to quit procrastinating and get down to studying, San Diego State’s Love Library is the place to be. The larger central library provides five floors of study space and more than 6.4 million items. Scanners, printers and copiers are available for a small per-page fee. Love Library is truly a one-stop shop for just about any scholarly requirement.

The main entrance, known as the Infodome, features group study rooms, a Student Computing Center and a 24/7 Study Area for those late nights before an exam. Last semester, a new Peabody’s Organic Coffee cart became the latest installment to the 24/7 area. Some students felt the addition unnecessary and distracting, but others appreciated the convenience of caffeine without having to leave the building.

For those who prefer a quieter study environment, the fifth level of the main library is denoted as a quiet study floor. Most students are generally respectful of the silent rule, so this location also doubles as a great place to take a nap.

Take a break from studying with a quick game on the Atari 2600 located on the second floor near the elevators. The console features a different retro game every day. Students can also look forward to browsing the $2.25 million science fiction collection—recently donated by Edward Marsh—once it has been fully catalogued by staff.

It comes as no surprise the Love Library is the best study spot on campus. As you explore the vast labyrinth of bookshelves, take note of the direction of the sun—this will help you find your way out later.

– Caitlin Johnson, Staff Columnist

Best Coffee: StarbucksSTARBUCKS_AC

The key to the value of Starbucks is consistency. No matter where you go, Starbucks offers the same high-quality products at a reasonable cost. Students know this, so no matter what time of day, they consistently line up to get their java, courtesy of the biggest name in the coffee biz.

Even those who don’t enjoy coffee love Starbucks. In fact, thinking of Starbucks exclusively as a destination for “javaphiles” would be a big mistake. Starbucks offers a myriad of options for people who don’t like coffee, from white chocolate mochas and vanilla bean Frappuccinos to raspberry passion tea lemonades. These don’t taste like coffee drinks because they aren’t coffee drinks, and that’s OK. Starbucks is a judgment-free zone and no matter who you are, the folks with the green siren on their cups have your beverage needs completely covered.

 – Kenneth Leonard, Assistant Opinion Editor

Best Place to Hide Your Face After Finals: La Casita’s

A universal feeling for college students is that of exiting a classroom after a final, pausing and then releasing a slightly exasperated, slightly perturbed “f—.” Remember everything you studied? It wasn’t on there. Your professor’s, “This will be on the test,” speech was really just one cruel, “psych!” There’s also the even worse feeling of thinking you answered every question right, but still somehow managed to fail.

For those college-experience-defining moments, there’s La Casita’s Mexican Grill.

Not only does it have quality, inexpensive beer and bomb burritos, it’s also now ostensibly the closest place to campus that serves alcohol (R.I.P. Louie’s).

While you’re drinking to forget every bit of knowledge you learned about business calculus for that one class you were worried about failing, you just might remember the formula that would have afforded you five extra points on the test.

If that’s the case, bury your face in a pile of carne asada fries to the blaring soundtrack of the latest electronic dance music and dubstep tracks.

Fist pump your way through an “NAK Special” or a “Black Book” burrito and get ready to do it all again next semester.

If you enjoy the simpler pleasures, get weird on some chips and salsa with a few buddies and talk about how your professor evaluation score would be way higher if all the tests were open book.

Don’t worry. Have another beer. It’s gonna be OK.

– Kevin Smead, Entertainment Editor


Best Traditional Date: Balboa ParkBALBOA2_ML

What do you and your date have in common with Balboa Park? You are all beautiful.

Whether you are walking next to the lily pond with cute koi fish mating, or strolling along an old happy couple holding hands next to you, Balboa Park will have you and your date feeling “fuzzies” inside.

This date spot is not only free, but it welcomes people of all ages, even those who date their pets. For pet lovers that visit Balboa Park, there are pooch parks around the park that make a nice outing, preventing you from looking creepy for taking your pet to a restaurant.

If it’s Tuesday, San Diego County residents get free entrance to a selection of museums. And after feeling like an intellectual, stop by the Bea Evenson Fountain and make a wish for your date to never end.

Once it starts to get dark and the museums and shops close, you can get a couple of drinks or dinner in either Hillcrest or the Gaslamp Quarter, which are just a few minutes away.

– Ana Ceballos, Assistant News Editor

Best Campus Restaurant: Olive Oil Cafe

For four years I was part of the minority here at San Diego State: I am a vegetarian. For four years, you would find me sadly searching the campus restaurant menus for the lonely meatless options. Then God showed pity for all vegetarians on campus and opened Olive Oil Cafe.

This place is not only delicious and healthy, it also has the friendliest employees in the College Area. No joke, I witnessed an employee giving a complimentary drink to a girl who was crying because she had just broken up with her boyfriend. I felt the Olive Oil love, and the girl, who stopped crying for a good 10 seconds, did too.

This delicious veggie cafe is not only a haven for vegetarians, but also meat eaters who enjoy delicious food. Also, it has pretty awesome names for its sandwiches. Take for example, the “Ultimate Veggie,” which sounds like something a sandwich Superman would eat, or the “Mighty Mushroom,” which makes you believe if you eat it you will grow up strong like Mario.

I am happy the vegetarian community at SDSU found a powerful and delicious veggie hero.

– Ana Ceballos, Assistant News Editor


 Best SDSU Came0: Bring it On

San Diego State has a long and storied tradition. Not least among the many accomplishments the school can boast is a healthy dose of movie and TV appearances. But by far the most significant of these is SDSU’s role as the Toros’ high school in the 2000 hit movie “Bring It On.”

In this movie, SDSU is showcased as Kirsten Dunst’s high school campus, with Hepner Hall appearing prominently as the school’s front entrance. This alone would be enough to make this a memorable moment in the school’s artistic career. However, the movie was more than just a drama about competing cheerleading squads. It was a tale of love, humility and redemption. When cheer captain Torrance Shipman found out her team had been stealing its cheer routine from the East Compton Clovers, they realized it was better to get second place with an original routine than win with a stolen one.

This is a message SDSU espouses more than anyone else: Be yourself and, whatever the outcome, at least you’ll know you were honest to yourself.

– Leo Castaneda, Opinion Editor


Best Place to Sleep: “Those Big Chairs” In the Love LibrarySTUDYSPOT-LIBRARYCHAIR1_AC

No one can deny the awesome comfort of “those big chairs in the Love Library.” We all know the ones: Just at the base of those big, curvy staircases at the main entrance, they sit apart from all else like some exclusive VIP section, the ultra lounge of the Love Library.

With enormous backs and armrests, even Hagrid would have no trouble getting comfortable in those bad boys. But alas, the Love Library is not free of social judgment, and with great chairs comes great responsibility.

Hundreds of people pass by them every day, and when you’ve finally claimed one of these rarely vacant chairs for yourself and bunkered down for some shut-eye, you’ve got potentially hundreds of fellow classmates, professors and ex-girlfriends passing by and watching you drool on your notebook. Social judgment is apparently the price for a good nap here at San Diego State. Only you can decide whether it’s worth it or not. Nap on, I say, because we’ll probably do something just as embarrassing when we’re awake anyway.

– J. Hutton Marshall, Managing Editor


Best Venue: Viejas ArenaVIEJAS2_PN

This July, Viejas Arena turns 16 years old and already the teenage arena has made a name for itself. Viejas has hosted some of the biggest musical talents and sporting events in San Diego.

Its location, accessibility and versatility are what make Viejas one of the best arenas in the country. Not every arena can withstand the booming sounds coming from The Show, the boisterous cheering from Lady Gaga’s “little monsters” and the roaring laughter from one of Katt William’s comedic routines.

Before Viejas Arena was built, Aztec basketball games and events were held in Peterson Gym. It’s hard to imagine San Diego State fans crowding into that gym to enjoy a game or concert.

Viejas is located within walking distance of a trolley station and two large parking structures: one across the street and the other located directly north of the arena, which make them easily accessible and allows for hassle-free parking.

During the week, Viejas hosts practices but at night it quickly transforms for concerts of all genres and sold-out basketball games, making it an extremely versatile arena.

Because Viejas is still young, SDSU students and San Diego residents can look forward to many more years and memories in this stadium.

– Adriana Bush, Assistant Sports Editor

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San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913
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