Thursday, August 29, 2002
7:05 p.m. PDT
Bulldog Stadim Fresno, Calif.
Television: The San Diego State at Fresno State game will be televised live to a national cable audience by ESPN2.
Radio: All San Diego State football games can be heard live in southern California on XTRA Sports (690 AM).
The Records: San Diego State will be playing its first game while Fresno State was scheduled to open at Wisconsin on Aug 23.
The Fresno State game marks the debut of new Aztec head coach Tom Craft. It will also mark the debut of Craft as a Division IA head coach. Fresno State Coach Pat Hill: Bulldog head coach Pat Hill was 37-25 at FSU through his first five years at Fresno State.
The Aztecs have played the Bulldogs more than any other opponent. SDSU has won all four meetings since 1995, including a 20-19 win at Fresno in 1997, the Aztecs’ last trip to the San Joaquin Valley. Even though SDSU has a healthy series lead, SDSU has only outscored Fresno State by a combined total of eight points, 1,003-995. The first meeting between the two schools took place in 1923.
The 2002 Chapter
The 80th season of San Diego State football gets underway Aug. 29th when San Diego State visits Fresno State at Bulldog Stadium. San Diego State enters the game with an all-time record of 442-322-32, but will be trying to shake off three straight losing seasons. After opening at home for 11 straight seasons, San Diego State will open a season on the road for the first time since dropping a 42-21 decision at Oregon on Sept. 8, 1991. Fresno State will have a game under its belt with a road trip to Wisconsin on tap for the Bulldogs before they return home to host the Aztecs. The game marks the debut of new San Diego State head coach Tom Craft.
The Nation’s Eyes, Again
For the third straight year, San Diego State’s season opener will be televised live to a national cable audience. The Aztec-Bulldog game will be telecast live by ESPN2 with Chris Marlowe and John Cooper calling the action and Heather Cox reporting from the sidelines.
San Diego State is 42-32-5 all-time in openers and 7-3-1 in lidlifters over the past 11 years. The Aztecs have dropped a couple of tough games to open the last two seasons, including a 10-7 setback to Arizona State in 2000 and last season’s 23-10 loss to Arizona. The Aztecs have not opened a season with a road victory since Sept. 12, 1981, when they defeated Colorado State, 30-14. That drought includes seven straight losses when opening on the road. Incidentally, that season-opening road win at Colorado State came in the first game the Aztecs played under head coach Doug Scovil. Overall, San Diego State is 8-21 when opening a season on the road.
If You Like Football...
If football is your game and you like to travel, San Diego State is your team for the 2002 season. The Aztecs are embarking on their longest season ever with 13 games scheduled for the regular season, including eight road trips. The 1991 team played 13 games when factoring in the Freedom Bowl appearance. San Diego State will travel east as far as Boulder, Colo., and end the season with a road game at Hawaii in December. In all, San Diego State’s regular season will cover 18 weeks from start to finish.