Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#399 Utah State -3.5 vs.
#400 San Diego State 51
Saturday, September 21, 2019 at 10:30pm EDT
Qualcomm Stadium, San Diego
Written by Chris Kubala

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#399 Utah State University
#400 San Diego State University
1-1
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48
19
22
7

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A pair of teams from the Mountain West Conference lock up in their conference opener down in southern California. The Utah State Aggies are on the road as they make the trip to face the San Diego State Aztecs Saturday night. Utah State is coming off a bye last week: they rolled to a 62-7 win over FCS school Stony Brook at home in their last contest on September 7. San Diego State dropped New Mexico State 31-10 on the road last Saturday to remain unbeaten on the year. The Aztecs have won all nine meetings between the teams, including a 40-13 road win in the last matchup on October 28, 2016.

Utah State Hopes Rest Leads to Success

Utah State had a bye week after trouncing Stony Brook two weeks ago. The Aggies hope that the extended break can help their earn their first win over San Diego State in school history. Utah State was up 17-0 after one quarter on Stony Brook and 34-0 at the half en route to the one-sided victory. The Aggies racked up a 717-263 advantage in total offense, piled up 35 first downs while allowing 16 and overcame a 30:59 to 29:01 disadvantage in time of possession. Both teams turned the ball over once but Utah State did score on a punt return.

The Aggies are third in the nation in passing offense as they average 404 yards through the air while they are 20th in rushing offense with 252.5 yards per contest. Utah State is 13th in the FBS in scoring offense with 48.5 points per game while the team is 56th in scoring defense by allowing 22.5 points per contest. Jordan Love hit 58 of 82 passes for 710 yards with four touchdowns and three interceptions on the year: he’s added 33 yards on the ground. Henry Colombi is eight of nine for 93 yards plus two scores while Andrew Peasley is two of two for five yards. Jaylen Warren leads the Aggies with 28 carries for 246 yards plus three scores while Gerold Bright has 18 carries for 104 yards and two scores on the year. Siaosi Mariner leads the team with 13 receptions for 191 yards plus two scores: Caleb Repp (10 catches, 117 yards) and Jordan Nathan (nine grabs, 116 yards, TD) are next in line. Dominik Eberle has connected on all 13 extra point attempts and both field goal tries this season.

San Diego State Aztecs Looking for 4-0 Start

San Diego State ran past New Mexico as they seem to have gotten stronger as the season has worn on. The Aztecs struggled to edge Weber State 6-0 in their opener before downing UCLA 23-14 ahead of their win over New Mexico State. San Diego State jumped to a 17-0 halftime lead and was up 24-0 in the third quarter en route to the victory. The Aztecs held a 397-329 advantage in total offense, rolled up 24 first downs while allowing 17 and dominated time of possession by a 35:04 to 24:56 margin. For good measure, San Diego State forced four New Mexico State turnovers while committing only one.

The Aztecs are 110th in the nation in passing offense with 172.3 yards per game through the air while the team is 76th in rushing offense with 163.7 yards per contest. San Diego State is just 113th in the FBS in scoring offense with 20 points per game but they have been sparkling defensively, ranking fourth in the nation in scoring defense by allowing only eight points per contest. Ryan Agnew has completed 56 of 87 passes for 517 yards with two touchdowns and one interception on the season: he’s added 50 yards on the ground. Jordan Byrd leads the team with 37 carries for 187 yards and two scores while Chance Bell adds 23 carries for 135 yards plus a score: Juwan Washington (42 carries, 96 yards) is also in the mix, though he missed last week with an ankle injury. Jesse Matthews leads the team with 12 receptions for 115 yards on the season. Kobe Smith (11 catches, 165 yards, TD) and Elijah Kothe (eight receptions, 65 yards) are next in line. Matt Araiza has booted all six extra point attempts and six of seven field goal tries this season with a long of 43.

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This one is going to be an interesting clash as Utah State has been explosive offensively this season while San Diego State has been very good on the defensive side of the ball. The Aztecs have allowed 205.7 yard per game through the air but they’ve held the opposition to a meager 42.3 yards per game on the ground with a 1.7 yard per carry average. Utah State’s defense has been a bit leaky as they were beaten 38-35 in a shootout by Wake Forest in their opener: they give up 143 yards per game on the ground but just a 3.2 yard per carry average. Still, history gives us a trend to lean on and seeing that San Diego State, who is at home, has won all nine previous meetings, give them the edge here.

Prediction: San Diego State Aztecs +4

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Utah State is going to try and move the ball quickly with their fast-strike offensive attack. The Aggies are going to have a tough time against the stiff San Diego State defense, which has given up only 24 points in three games this season. The Aztecs are going to test Love and the Aggies’ receivers in order to move the ball. Utah State had their success against Wake Forest and Stony Brook but this provides a much stiffer challenge than they have faced at this point in time. Can the Aggies find a way to come up with enough offense to get a victory in this one?

The under is 4-0 in the Aztecs’ last 4 games overall, 5-0 in their last 5 games after allowing more than 280 yards passing in their previous game, 7-1 in their last 8 games following a straight up win and 6-1 in their last 7 games after accumulating less than 170 yards passing in their previous game. Utah State can pile up points but they’re going to have their struggles against San Diego State. This one ends up under the number as points are at a premium.

Prediction: Under 52.5
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Written By Chris Kubala

Christopher Kubala has been crunching stats and following sports for over 30 years. His in-depth analysis and passion for sports have led him to writing books about sports, regularly being featured on sports talk radio and as the go-to person for any obscure trivia. Now he is writing for our team here at Winners @ Whiners. Chris keeps an eye on transactions and statistics like a hawk, especially when it comes to football, both the NFL and college. He is also very knowledgeable in the NHL, the NBA, college basketball and MLB. If you want consistency, then be sure and check out Chris’ content daily.