Grading The Performance: San Diego State

I am including a scale to provide more detail to the grades I give out. Hopefully this will clear up some of the ambiguity within the previous grades.

A: Unit played as close to flawless as possible. Unit played well enough to win the game on their own.

B: Unit had a major positive impact on the game but also had several assignment/execution miscues.

C: Unit did not negatively or positively affect the game. Unit made key positive plays along with critical errors.

D: Unit made multiple critical errors that could potentially cost the team a win. Unit blew assignments and had poor execution across the board.

F: Play of the unit was bad enough that it could directly cost the team a victory.

Note: Plus and minuses denote degrees of the grade.


The production from the QB position continues to be double sided. Denard remains a terror in the running game, but his play in the passing game is below average. Denard once again broke the back of another opponent by breaking big plays with his legs. He continues to show great vision and patience when running the ball, though his reads on the zone read were suspect at times. Poor decisions and throws in the 2nd half could have potentially brought SDSU back. Both interceptions were the result of bad throws and bad decisions. There were several nice throws in the first half, but overall the passing game doesn’t seem to be getting better.

Grade: B

Running Back

The RBs combined for 23 carries and 127 yds rushing. Vincent Smith had another strong day on the ground and made some nice receiving plays. Smith’s fumble in the first half was costly as the team was driving for a 21-0 lead. Fitz continues to be the best, between the tackles and short yardage runner, but hasn’t broken any large runs since the first game. Stephen Hopkins once again showed that he cannot be counted on to hang on to the football, he needs to exclusively play FB from now on.

Grade: B+

Wide Receivers/TEs

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San Diego State Game Prediction

Ronnie Hillman

All week long, I’ve been writhing about this game. Heck, all offseason I’ve pointed to this game as one that scares the maize and blue blood out of me.

SDSU brings 2 top notch, potential NFL skill players to town in Ryan Lindley and Ronnie Hillman at QB and RB respectively, and they’re both very talented. If you look at the balance they have, the number of looks they’ll give you, its exactly what Michigan OC Al Borges wants Michigan to look like down the road. Pro style passer, tough running back, and knock your socks off offensive line.

On the defensive side, SDSU is exactly what former coach Rich Rodriguez wanted. Fast, undersized, blitzing from everywhere (Hoke stated they’d blitz from the kitchen if they could).

The keys for Michigan will be pressure from the DL. If Lindley has time, he will find his targets. In the snippets of film I’ve watched, he hasn’t seen much of any, how will he handle it?

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A Chat with Erik Magnuson

More Interviews from UMGoBlog2012 Recruiting Board

Offensive tackle is a huge position of need and Michigan got a verbal from one of the best in the country this past weekend in left coaster Erik Magnuson. The Californian made it in to Ann Arbor last weekend and made his verbal pledge to Coach Hoke.

Erik MagnusonSean O’Connell: Did you know Coach Hoke before he took over at Michigan?

Eric Magnuson: “Yes. I have a great relationship with him that was started when I was 15 because he was at SDSU, just 20 min from my house.”

Sean O’Connell: Who was your primary recruiter? How is your relationship with him?

Eric Magnuson: “Coach Ferrigno. I have a GREAT relationship with him.”

Sean O’Connell: Did you grow up a fan of Michigan? Where did the interest come from?

Eric Magnuson: “I didn’t have a favorite team growing up. My interest all came from Coach Hoke going there.”

Sean O’Connell: How did you commit and what was the reaction?

Eric Magnuson: “I had a meeting with Coach Hoke, Coach Ferrigno, Coach Funk and my dad. I just told coach I was ready to commit and they went crazy. It was awesome.”

Sean O’Connell: What other schools did you consider?

Eric Magnuson: “Oklahoma, Notre Dame, Miami, Boise State, Oregon and USC.”

Sean O’Connell: Have you talked to any other kids about coming to Michigan?

Eric Magnuson: “Yes, a lot. I’m trying to help build a national championship team.”

Sean O’Connell: Last one. I know there is a long time until February, but do you think you’ll visit any other schools along the way?

Eric Magnuson: “No, I don’t think I will.”