Kickoff and Coverage Info:
Teams: SDSU vs. Navy
Bowl: San Diego Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl
Kickoff and Coverage: 8 p.m. Eastern on ESPN and ESPN 3
Stadium: Qualcomm Stadium
The Midshipmen are riding a four-game winning streak as they seek a second straight bowl victory. This marks the eighth year in a row that the Mids have made a bowl game and quarterback Ricky Dobbs hopes to lead his team to a school record second straight 10-win season.
Navy Achilles Heel
Dobbs and the offense sputtered at the outset of the game against the Army Black Knights last week as it committed four turnovers. Navy’s offense must concentrate on ball security and needs to strike early if it expects to keep up with SDSU as it averages 35 points per game.
On the other side of the ball, the Midshipmen defense has been solid on the ground but ranks 65 against the pass. Several games this season against high-powered passing offenses exposed a Navy secondary that can hemorrhage yards through the air allowing an average of 220 per game.
SDSU Achilles Heel
The Aztecs 51 ranked rush defense will have its hands full with Navy’s fifth ranked ground game that features Ricky Dobbs. Dobbs and the triple-option attack can control the clock with long drives dominating time of possession. The big-play ability of Dobbs and his offensive weapons pose a major threat to the Aztecs defense.
SDSU’s quarterback Ryan Lindley has thrown nine interceptions in the last five games, including three against Utah on Nov. 20. After the regular season ended, Lindley earned the regular season record in the MWC for interceptions with 14. His ability to keep the ball away from Navy defenders directly contributes to SDSU’s ability to win the game.
Navy Shinning Stars
The Midshipmen rushing offense is poised to potentially overwhelm the Aztecs as it has dominated enough opponents to earn the nation’s fifth rank overall. Ricky Dobbs has scored 13 touchdowns and averages nearly 80 yards per game this season. Dobbs hasn’t lived up to the pre-season expectations after breaking an NCAA record for rushing touchdowns for a quarterback with 26 in 2009 but he has accounted for 25 total scores. Navy averages 288.92 yards on the ground per game and Dobbs needs 140 yards to be just the seventh quarterback in NCAA history to rush for 1,000 yards and pass for 1,000 yards in a season twice in a career.
SDSU Shinning Stars
The Aztecs posses the No. 19 ranked offense in total yards that includes quarterback Ryan Lindley who leads the Mountain West with 3,554 passing yards. Lindley has 26 touchdowns with 14 interceptions as he has led the Aztec offense to an 8-4 record. SDSU also has a formidable rushing attack that ranks 63 in the nation.
Aztecs’ running back in Ronnie Hillman, the MWC conference freshman of the year, who set the single-season freshman rushing record with 1,304 yards on 150 attempts. Hillman has also scrambled into the end zone 14 times this season.
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