© Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Eastern Michigan Flies West and Takes the Aztecs to the Limit

John Baron II wins the game in overtime with a 39 yard clincher.

September 22, 2018 - 11:20 pm

NFL kicking prospect John Baron II missed a nearly automatic field goal for  his standrads at 35 yards, but then tied up the game with a 50 yard field goal, then won the game with a 39 yard no doubter in overtime. 

This game should have never gone to overtime, because the Aztecs should have just done their thing and run out the clock and run run run. One reason is because the Aztecs star running back was injured. 

Juwan Washington exited the game early with an injury. It's a shame because Washington was still destroying competition, averaging 5.1 yards a carry before he was forced to leave. Rocky Long wouldn't reveal much about Washington after the game, but he did say that team doctor's think Washington will be ok. 

At the start of the 4th Quarter the score was tied 17-17. I was racking my brain wondering how that could be possible. I asked my friend “How could a team from a small school in Michigan keep up with the Aztecs?” and then “How could a team from a small school in Michigan come back from down 14 at SDCCU Stadium?”.

I used to travel a lot pre radio life and I always was so tired when flying east to west. So I wanted to get some specifics. 

It takes about 3 hours and 40 minutes to fly to Detroit, not to mention finishing the game around 11 pm. It led me to think that they have to be staying until the morning at least. Then I heard on the broadcast the team flew in a day early. So I did some research and found out Eastern Michigan hasn't had a game in California in the last 28 years. 

It all made sense now. The Eastern Michigan University people treated this as their getaway vacation of sorts. Lots of tropical fun (we are tropical for the Midwest)!

Would you believe that this school is 6.8 miles away from Jim Harbaugh and the University of Michigan? Think about it. These people are from a small school in the MAC, in the shadow of one the biggest and most notorious stadiums in college football. 

This trip was different because it was also a vacation. I spent some time in the Midwest, and people from the Midwest love beach destinations. The team was able to adjust to the time difference (did I already mention how much I despise late starts?), be loose, have fun, and make memories. They stayed loose and in turn they stayed in the game. 

Ryan Agnew looked confident early and made some really good decisions which resulted in two touchdown passes that put the Aztecs ahead 17-3. Early in the game I thought he was getting better every drive. 

Until he did what I said he couldn't do...the ONE rule of keeping your job when Christian Chapman returns. Protect the football. I know it's only one interception, but it kept the Eagles in the game and game them the confidence they could win away from home. I mean ⬇️...

The defense again gave up long passes down the field, but played pretty well against the run for the most part. They held the Eagles to just 3.1 yards per carry. 

The pass defense was not up to Rocky Long standards once again, but not from Pac 12 receivers this time which is a little more alarming to me. They got beat for a 37 yard touchdown in the 3rd quarter, then again late in the 4th quarter when Junior Line Latu caught a pass and ran it for 54 yards. I have said on the podcast that being vulnerable to big chunk plays is ok as long as it allows the defense to play in the red zone. 

The refs did make a mistake with calling Agnew out of bounds after a critical completion, but it is what it is. 

Up next is a much needed bye week then a showdown in Idaho next week against Bosie State.