Update: It’s gotten worse for Araiza, as Utah State has blocked a field goal. It’s Araiza’s second miss of the game, although this one isn’t necessarily on him.
San Diego State Aztecs punter Matt Araiza has been the talk of the college football universe this season, with his ridiculous distance and precision playing a major role in San Diego State’s victories. The Aztecs are playing for the Mountain West title Saturday and Araiza was going to have a big role again. But a few plays didn’t quite go the punter’s way.
Matt Araiza's punt was blocked and he still got it to go 27 yards. LEGEND! pic.twitter.com/FQzZ12wdV2— ✯✯✯✯✯ (@FTB_Vids_YT) December 4, 2021
Somehow, this blocked punt still traveled 27 yards. That shows you Araiza’s power as a punter, but that’s not all the power he has. Araiza decided to show he could hit people too. Unfortunately, that led to a 15-yard penalty.
It kept going from bad to worse for Araiza. He missed a 54-yard field goal to add to his poor start.
Matt Araiza has…— Collin Sherwin (@CollinSherwin) December 4, 2021
A 15-yard unsportsmanlike penalty.
A partially-blocked punt.
And now a missed FG.
Just throwing the Heisman away with two hands here. And if their best player can’t perform, how can San Diego State win today?
In a wide open Heisman race this season, many college football fans and media members were making the case for Araiza. Of course, this was never a serious consideration for the Heisman committee but Saturday’s events have shown he is in fact human and capable of making mistakes. For most players, that won’t mean anything in award races. For a punter, that’s basically the end of the road.
San Diego State, a 6-point favorite according to DraftKings Sportsbook, is down to Utah State 7-0 in the first half of the Mountain West title game.