Five Things to Know About the San Diego State University
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1. The Aztec is More than a Mascot: San Diego State takes honoring the Aztec heritage very seriously. Since the 1920's, the Aztec name has been a nickname for the school's athletic programs but the University's commitment to honoring the spirit of the Aztec civilization has evolved. The Aztec heritage has permeated SDSU's campus everywhere from the school's colors to architectural elements of buildings.
2. Big Market: San Diego is the eighth-largest city in the United States and the second-largest city in California. The city had a population of 1.3 million people as of the 2010 census and is listed among the top 10 safest cities in the United States. San Diego is known for its mild year-round climate, its natural deep-water harbor and its long association with the U.S. Navy.
3. A Diverse Student Body: SDSU ranks sixth in the nation and second in California in number of bachelor's degrees awarded to Hispanics. It also ranks in the top 20 nationally for bachelor's degrees awarded to ethnic minorities, racial diversity, LGBT-friendly campuses and economically diverse student bodies.
4. Strong Coaching Tradition: San Diego State has served as a training ground for many of the great coaches in football history. Hall of Famers Joe Gibbs and John Madden are both alums and former assistant coaches. Don Coryell, who went on to coach the San Diego Chargers and is credited by many as the father of the modern passing offense, received his start at SDSU. More recently, former Aztec head coach Brady Hoke moved on to take over at Michigan and is a top contender for 2011 Coach of the Year.
5. Aztecs a Program on the Upswing: After failing to make a bowl for more than a decade, the Aztecs reached their second consecutive bowl game in 2011. When the Aztecs recently accepted a bid to the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl it marked the first time the Aztecs have reached back-to-back postseason bowl games in program history.