The Aztec defense, already ranked last in the country, got a couple of scoldings from Coach Al Luginbill during practice Wednesday.

"We'd have been better off if we had not even practiced today," an exasperated Luginbill said afterward. "I don't know what it was. (Tuesday) we were flying around, and we made a few errors, but it was Tuesday. Wednesday we should be getting sharper, and we didn't. . . .

"We've got to come out of it by (Thursday). We've only got one more day. What we're doing is so simple, it's almost scary. I'm concerned about it, obviously, because we haven't done this before at this time of year."

Luginbill stopped practice about three-quarters of the way through to chew out the defense and then got after them again when practice was finished.

Sophomore defensive lineman Vaea Santos fractured his right foot during practice Wednesday and will undergo surgery today. Luginbill had already planned to redshirt him. Team physician Dr. Robert Straumfjord also examined running backs Tommy Booker (sprained ankle) and Curtis Butts (neck strain/sprain) and cleared both to practice today, according to head trainer Brian Barry. Both Booker and Butts are available for Saturday's game against Air Force. Freshman linebacker Jamal Duff (bruised thigh) was cleared to start running today. Offensive tackle Nick Subis (sprained right knee) and Carlson Leomiti (bruised foot) is probable. . . . Vickie Larsen, SDSU ticket manager, said she is expecting a crowd of about 20,000 Saturday. The game with Air Force, which begins an hour earlier than usual at 6:05 p.m., will feature a pre-game paper airplane throwing contest and a post-game concert by the group America as well as an appearance by the Famous Chicken.

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