The All-Time San Diego State NFL Team
Marshall Faulk, Brian Sipe and more
Air Coryell was one of the most dynamic passing offenses the NFL has ever seen.
With Hall of Famers Dan Fouts, Charlie Joiner and Kellen Winslow, Don Coryell’s San Diego Chargers lit up NFL skies in the late 1970s and early 1980s. But Coryell was lighting up San Diego skies long before he arrived in the NFL.
As head coach at San Diego State University from 1961-72, Coryell showed the college game you could win with the pass and its deep-strike capability. The Aztecs sent quarterbacks Dennis Shaw and Brian Sipe to the NFL from the Coryell era as well as wide receivers Isaac Curtis, Gary Garrison and Haven Moses. Sipe became an NFL MVP and those three wide receivers combined for 10 Pro Bowl appearances.
If you wanted to stretch defenses, NFL teams needed to scout the San Diego State campus. Garrison averaged 18.6 yards per reception in his 12-year NFL career with the Chargers, Moses 18.1 yards and Curtis 17.1. Curtis led the NFL with his average of 21.2 yards per reception for the Cincinnati Bengals in 1975 and Garrison averaged 20-plus yards per catch in half of his 12 seasons. Moses had four seasons when he averaged 20-plus yards per reception in his 14-year career with the Buffalo Bills and Denver Broncos.
Even after Coryell left for the St. Louis Cardinals in 1973, the Aztecs continued to send deep-strike receivers to the NFL in Webster Slaughter, Darnay Scott and Az Hakim. Slaughter averaged 19 yards per catch in 1989 to help the Cleveland Browns reach the AFC championship game. Scott averaged 18.8-yards per reception as a rookie with the Bengals in 1994 and Hakim averaged 18.8 yards with eight touchdowns for the Greatest Show on Turf in 1999, helping the St. Louis Rams win a Super Bowl.
Coryell, by the way, is a finalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Class of 2023.
So pencil in Curtis and Garrison as the two wide receivers on the all-time San Diego State NFL team.
And here is that team:
QB—Brian Sipe, Pro Bowl, 1980 NFL MVP
HB—Marshall Faulk, Hall of Fame
RB—Skeets Quinlan, Pro Bowl, 5 seasons (1950s), 1,514 yards, 15 TDs
WR—Isaac Curtis, 4 Pro Bowls, 12 seasons, 416 receptions, 53 TDs
WR—Gary Garrison, 4 Pro Bowls, 12 seasons, 405 receptions, 58 TDs
TE—Don Warren, 14 seasons, 181 starts, 3 Super Bowl rings
T—Claude Minor, 9 seasons, 123 starts
T—Ephraim Salaam, 13 seasons, 129 starts
G—Kyle Turley, 8 seasons, 107 starts
G—Rich Moran, 9 seasons, 82 starts
C—Roman Fortin, 10 seasons, 102 starts
DE—Fred Dryer, Pro Bowl, 13 seasons, 103 sacks
DE—Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila, Pro Bowl, 9 seasons, 74 ½ sacks
DT—La’Roi Glover, 6 Pro Bowls, 13 seasons, 83 ½ sacks
DT—Jim Wilks, 13 seasons, 154 starts, 49 sacks
OLB—Kirk Morrison, 8 seasons, 5 100-tackle seasons
MLB—Richard Brown, 8 seasons, 126 tackles in 1991
OLB—Michael Douglass, 9 seasons, 106 starts, 17 fumble recoveries
CB—Willie Buchanan, 2 Pro Bowls, 11 seasons, 28 interceptions
CB—Monto Jackson, 2 Pro Bowls, 9 seasons, 23 interceptions
S—Robert Griffith, Pro Bowl, 13 seasons, 164 starts, 27 interceptions
S—Brian Russell, 8 seasons, 95 starts, 16 interceptions
K—Brad Daluiso, 12 seasons, 128 field goals, 544 points
P—Mike Saxon, 11 seasons, 813 punts, 41.7-yard average, Super Bowl ring
KR—Az Hakim, 9 seasons, 165 returns, 3 touchdowns, Super Bowl ring
ST—Kassim Osgood, 3 Pro Bowls, 139 ST tackles
LS—Randy Kirk, 13 seasons, 157 games, 7 teams