SAN DIEGO — SAN DIEGO -- San Diego State athletic director Rick Bay plans to file a grievance with the Qualcomm Stadium supervisors over the 11: 35 a.m. (PDT) kickoff for the season opener that attracted only 21,136 fans.
According to Bay, the early start cost the Aztecs an estimated 10,000 spectators. Tickets were being offered to Navy personnel in the area for $5.
Conflicts with Fox and ESPN baseball schedules did not allow the Padres to leave the Aztecs with a more attractive time.
"I've never been involved with anything like this," Bay said. "This is the worst starting time I've ever experienced in Division I-A football.
"It goes to show you how important it is for the Padres to get a new stadium. I'm asking the city to inform Major League Baseball as to our football dates. They should be able to pick a noon or 8 p.m. start, but not to tie up the whole day. Major League Baseball is not a party to the stadium lease."
McCoy shares blame
Although the Navy defense was torched for 455 yards, including 371 passing by untested fifth-year quarterback Kevin McKechnie, Navy quarterback Chris McCoy said the Mids' offense was equally to blame for the 45-31 loss.
"We had our chances to jump right on top of them in the first quarter," McCoy said. "I overthrew [slotback] Manny Metcalf when he was wide open, and [Tom Vanderhorst] missed a field goal on our first possession.
"Offensively, we just didn't take control when we had our chance."
After watching reserve cornerback Enrico Hunter get consistently beaten by the speedy San Diego receivers, Navy coach Charlie Weatherbie called on Sean Andrews in the third quarter, although the senior had been ruled questionable with a nagging groin pull.
Andrews did not change things as Az-zahir Hakim and Taj Johnson continued to find open spaces in the secondary.
"The groin hurt a bit," Andrews said, "but I still should have been able to stay with them better."
Pub Date: 9/06/97