Throw a penalty flag on the newspaper in town, the Union-Tribune, for a cheapshot column on San Diego State football coach Rocky Long.
Columnist Kevin Acee, in a scathing critique of the head coach, called for his ouster, saying the program is going nowhere under his leadership.
Citing a putrid road record against quality teams, the UT says the school needs to find a better coach to lead to better days.
The only shred of truth in the column is the fact SDSU is (0-28) against schools from the Big 5-Confernces. Lost in that stat is the fact the Aztecs, overmatched against big time schools, have been in a bunch of those big time road games games, only to lose late, at Notre Dame, at Michigan, at Ohio State and others.
Match any of the other schools in the conference, Fresno to Wyoming to New Mexico, to Colorado State, to Air Force, and tell me anyone who has done well on the road against big boys.
Acee fails to take into account the amazing State win at Boise State a couple of years back, a place no one wins.
Forgotten in the condemnation of Long is the fact SDSU is one ot the top schools in the conference for graduating its players. Where APR violations used to be, are now players with diplomas, about to begin their life’s work.
You don”t see SDSU players involved in crimes off the field. There have been no hint of academic fraud, no drug issues, no DUIs, no rapes, no assaults. Guys who wear the Red and Black are truly student athletes.
Being in the non-recognizable Mountain West Conference is not Rocky Long’s fault.
Having a limited budget, not even comparable to Boise and TCU, is not the coaches fault.
Not being able to turn on the 110,000 or so alums living here, to come support the team, doesn’t fall to the coach.
It is dissappointing to see a home crowd of under 17,000, or less than 1,000 for the fall ‘Red and Black’ scrimmage. The fans make their choice how to spend entertainment dollars.
The inability to recruit a big time quarterback in-state falls at his front door, is his shortcoming. Failing to close the deals and win the close road games, are on the coach and kids, but nothing beyond that.
But he is (20-10) in four years in conference. He has been to four bowl games in four years. Better than we had seen in recent decades.
The schedule has been upgraded, and now the challenge, go beat some of them.
The UT must have forgotten what SDSU football was like prior to the arrival of Long, and prior to that Brady Hoke.
Sure you could have made a run at Rick Neuhisel or Dennis Erickson or other hot names. But they might have been ‘here today-gone tomorrow’ , or here now, with NCAA sanction to follow.
Anybody remember Chuck Long, Tom Kraft, Ted Tollner, all who tried and didn’t quite get it done.
Referencing Don Coryell and Claude Gilbert makes no sense. A different era, no academic standards, and something 40-years ago. That and then, has no relevance to the here and now.
I’d like to see a home and home with USC and UCLA. I want BYU on the schedule too. Maybe you schedule them, you draw more, maybe you recruit better, maybe you start to win against their likes also.
The next time they’re looking to cream someone in a column, go after the alumni and fans, who don’t seem to bleed Red & Black.
Emotionally, right now, SDSU is not close to being Boise State or TCU, and sadly, more like Temple and Eastern Michigan, trying to win games, and gain relevance in a major league market.
15-yard penalty on the newspaper for hammering a good man and a good coach.
He’s won with the resources they gave him, the schedule he inherited, and the limited ability to take it to the next level.
Being Boise State or TCU would be nice, but other people in that on campus administration have to do their job better, from the AD, to marketing, to fund raisers, so Rocky Long can do a better job.