It has been 12 long years since San Diego State last played in a bowl game. That is a horrendous streak in the era of six-win bowl teams.

But the Aztecs are halfway toward bowl eligibility after improving to 3-1 on Saturday by obliterating Utah State 41-7.

Obviously, Utah State (1-3) isn’t very good but the Aggies did lose by just 31-24 to national power Oklahoma.

San Diego State could be 4-0 but suffered a last-minute loss to Missouri a week earlier when two defenders collided into each other to help T.J. Moe turn a short pass into a game-winning 68-yard scoring play.

The Aztecs have been helped by having a real-live running game for the first time in several years. Freshman Ronnie Hillman has already rushed for 532 through four games, a total that is just 26 shy of Brandon Sullivan’s team-leading output (558) in 2009.

The passing game is fine with quarterback Ryan Lindley and receivers Vincent Brown and DeMarco Sampson. We’ll learn more about the defense in coming weeks when the schedule gets tougher.

San Diego State has a bye this week so it has two weeks to prepare for its Mountain West Conference opener against Brigham Young in Provo, a place where the Aztecs typically get blown out.

Wild WAC

Perhaps the Western Athletic Conference has two powerful teams this season.

No. 3 Boise State has beaten two BCS-conference schools in Virginia Tech and Oregon State and Nevada is ranked for the first time since 1948 after winning at BYU over the weekend.

The Wolf Pack (4-0) routed California 52-31 earlier in September and will be rolling up plenty of huge winning margins in WAC play behind superb dual-threat quarterback Colin Kaepernick.

Perhaps that late November contest in Reno between Boise State and Nevada will feature two teams with BCS aspirations.

The Broncos kept alive their hopes of upsetting college football fans all around the country by defeating Oregon State 37-24 for their 57th consecutive regular-season home win. Kellen Moore, a Top-5 Heisman candidate, passed for 288 yards and three touchdowns.

Big Ten or Little Chickens?

Ohio State rolled up 73 on Eastern Michigan, Wisconsin scored 70 on Austin Peay and Michigan tacked on 66 against Bowling Green this past Saturday

Iowa (vs. Ball State) and Michigan State (vs. Northern Colorado) each posted 45 points against overmatched opponents.

Ten teams from the great Big Ten were in action on Saturday and not a single one of them scheduled a tough program. And two conference teams lost to weaker-conference Mid-American foes – Northern Illinois ran all over Minnesota during a 34-23 upset and Toledo stunned Purdue 31-20.

And defenders of the BCS system like to say every game in the regular season means something. Not in the league of Little Chickens – oops, I mean Big Ten.


–Stanford is 4-0 for the first time since 1986 after walloping Notre Dame and the Cardinal have the best quarterback in the Pac-10 in Andrew Luck, who is significantly better than Washington’s Jake Locker.

–What got into UCLA? A team that looked so inept against Stanford earlier this month put a major licking on an obviously overrated Texas team.

–Can we drop the Big East down to Division II status? All eight Big East teams have at least one loss and none of them have beaten a good team yet with only two good nonconference opportunities left – Pittsburgh at Notre Dame in October and South Florida at Miami in November. The Big Least is embarrassing.

–Arkansas let a big opportunity to upset top-ranked Alabama get away and quarterback Ryan Mallett made some bad decisions in the latter half of the fourth quarter.

–Is there a more disappointing program in the country this season than Georgia? The Bulldogs are 0-3 in Southeastern Conference play after losing to Mississippi State, a team it normally whips.

–Can we just cancel the 2011 meeting between Florida and Kentucky now? Gators have won 24 straight meetings against the Wildcats with the last three decided by an average of 42 points. Think that’s bad? Consider this: Florida has outscored Kentucky 73-0 in the first quarter in the last three games. And this most-recent rout didn’t include Tim Tebow playing for the Gators.


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