Hall making the switch to defensive end


Photo by Kelly Smiley

Junior defensive end Noble Hall dances during a 2017 practice.

by Abraham Jewett, Assistant Sports Editor

In a game of inches, a shift of just a few feet can make a big difference. San Diego State defensive lineman Noble Hall, coming into his junior year, is looking to make a seamless transition from defensive tackle to defensive end. During the 2016 season he started every game at the nose tackle position.

Hall was successful last season playing inside, finishing the year with 26 total tackles, including six tackles for loss and three sacks. This season Hall has his eye’s set on more sacks, with his goal being to surpass last year’s sack total.

“I look to make more plays,” Hall said. “I set a goal for myself in the first game to get three sacks.”

Hall said he is happy to make the move from nose tackle to defensive end, believing it will give him more opportunities to reach the quarterback.

“I played D-end like all my life and then they moved me at nose tackle. I wasn’t really too familiar with playing so interior like that,” Hall said. “I like to edge pass rush. So once I feel like I get that edge rush, I’ll be good.”

First year SDSU defensive coordinator Danny Gonzales believes in Hall. Gonzales, who spent  the last six years as the Aztecs’ safeties coach, said he is confident that Hall is talented enough to make an easy transition.

“Noble’s a really good football player,” Gonzales said. “You’ve got to stay after him to play hard but he’s got a lot of talent. It’ll be a seamless move.”

Gonzales said he feels the position switch will add versatility to the defense.

“He’s played enough inside that we can move him back inside if we need to, and he’ll be just as valuable in there as he is at end,” Gonzales said.

While expectations surrounding him are high, Hall said he believes that the whole team will start the season ready to defend their 2016 Mountain West Conference title.

“People are going to expect a lot for us, it just means we’ve got to get better,” Hall said. “We’re going to work and we’re going to get to where we really need to be.”

SDSU starts their season with a home game against UC Davis on Sept. 2, followed by a visit to Arizona State on Sept. 9. Stanford University comes to town Sept. 16, and is a game which could vault Hall and his team into the national spotlight.

Stanford, which finished the 2016 season 10-3, will be a formidable opponent as they come into the year ranked No. 14 overall in both the coaches and AP preseason polls

“I’m really looking forward to (the Stanford) game,” Hall said. “That’s the game I feel like if I do good I’ll really get my name out there, because that’s big time football.”