San Diego St. vs


at Frisco Bowl
Wed, Dec 19
5:00 PM Pacific
Odds: Ohio -3, Total: 53.5

Game Analysis

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Ohio (-3)  27   San Diego State  24

San Diego State has their worst season in many years despite quality wins over Arizona State and Boise State. The problem was that the Aztecs played to the level of their competition and lost games to UNLV (as a 23.5 point favorite) and Hawaii (favored by 18). San Diego State was 0-8 ATS as a favorite and 3-1 ATS as an underdog in the regular season and playing well as a dog is nothing new for Rocky Long’s team, as the Aztecs are 28-14 ATS as an underdog since he stepped on campus in 2009 (9-1 ATS recently).

The biggest difference for San Diego State this season is that they did not have a dominating ground attack to cover up for their sub-par quarterbacking. The Aztecs managed just 4.9 yards per rush after a string of 2000 yard rushers with Donnel Pumphrey and Rashaad Penny. Juwan Washington was expected to be next in line to put up huge numbers after he ran for 1213 yards at 6.6 ypr as a backup the previous two seasons, but Washington was injured for part of the season and managed just 870 yards at a modest 4.8 ypr behind an offensive line that wasn’t as dominant as in recent years. San Diego State was worse than average running the ball, even when Washington was healthy, but their preferred method of moving the chains should work pretty well in this game against an Ohio defensive front that is 0.4 yards per rushing play worse than average (5.3 yprp allowed to teams that would combine to average only 4.9 yprp against an average defense). Some success running will help the occasional deep ball off of play-action and Ohio has proven susceptible to long passes in allowing 7.0 yards per pass play this season (to teams that would combine to average only 5.6 yppp against an average defensive team). The math projects 6.1 yards per play for the Aztecs in this game but both teams play at a slow pace and the number of possessions will be limited – and just 338 total yards are forecast for SDSU.

Ohio strength is an offense that averaged a very impressive 7.3 yards per play in 11 games against FBS foes that would combine to allow 6.0 yppl to an average attack. The Bobcats have a dynamic quarterback in Nathan Rourke, who throws the ball down the field well (14.5 yards per completion) and averaged 7.8 yards per pass play in FBS games while adding 952 yards on 104 runs. Running backs Quellette and Irons also posted great numbers (combined for 1973 yards at 6.4 ypr) but their production will likely be limited by San Diego State’s elite run defense that yielded just 3.4 yards per rushing play this season (to teams that would combine to average 4.8 yprp against an average team). The Aztecs are vulnerable to the pass, however, as they’ve surrendered 6.6 yards per pass play to quarterbacks that would combine to average 6.3 yppp against an average defense, and Rourke should have pretty good success through the air while doing some damage with his legs. Running quarterbacks are relatively better against good run defenses and my math model is projecting 202 rushing yards at 5.2 yprp and 196 pass yards at 7.7 yppp for the Bobcats.

The math favors Ohio by 5 points in this game but San Diego State will probably play better in this game than they did down the stretch against bad teams and the Aztecs apply to a 33-10 ATS bowl situation that plays on underdogs that lost their previous two games straight up. I’ll pass on this game.

  • Team Stats
  • Game Log
  • San Diego St.
  • Ohio


  • Run Plays 37.0 31.7
  • Run Yards 163.7 97.5
  • YPRP 4.9 3.4


  • Pass Comp 12.8 19.3
  • Pass Att 23.8 31.5
  • Comp % 53.8% 61.4%
  • Pass Yards 193.3 232.9
  • Sacks 2.4 2.1
  • Sack Yards 16.8 11.4
  • Sack % 9.2% 6.2%
  • Pass Plays 26.3 33.6
  • Net Pass Yards 176.6 221.5
  • YPPP 6.7 6.6


  • Total Plays 63.3 65.3
  • Total Yards 357.0 330.4
  • YPPL 5.6 5.1


  • Int 0.5 0.8
  • Int % 2.1% 2.4%
  • Fumbles 0.8 0.3
  • Turnovers 1.3 1.1
  • Points 22.3 21.8
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