Zach Lujan: He came for a time such as this

No team wants to lose their starting quarterback, but it’s a sad reality of the game that teams must prepare for.

The Jackrabbits did just that last year when they landed junior college transfer Zach Lujan from Chabot College in Hayward, Calif.

“We looked at a lot of quarterbacks in anticipation of having to have a guy with seasoned ability,” said head coach John Stiegelmeier. “He was our fit and he liked us, so it’s been super.”

Stiegelmeier went on to describe Lujan as very confident, something he demonstrated stepping into Saturday’s game at Missouri and completing 21 of 28 passes.

“It just comes from all the training you put in, all the work you put in,” Lujan said. “You have to trust your training in that sense. You have to trust the guys around you. I trust that they’re going to do their job. They trust that I’m going to do mine.”

Lujan credits his success in learning the system to his work with coaches and teammates.

“[Offensive coordinator/quarterbacks] coach [Eric] Eidsness met with me a couple times a week and we did a good job at starting at ground one and working our way up,” Lujan said. “Austin [Sumner], too, took me under his wing.”  

Sumner’s injury should keep him out 6-8 weeks, so in the meantime it appears to be Lujan’s job to lose. Lujan said he has been playing football since third grade and he said he’s been a quarterback his entire life.

“Quarterback is a highly scrutinized position, but I think that is why I love it,” Lujan said. “I’m the one calling the plays on offense and all eyes are on me. I think it’s a great example to lead by example and keep your composure. The guys around me did a great job. Offensive line worked their butts off. The receivers made some plays, so it was nice to be able to step up there and be successful.”

Lujan says he was not just drawn to SDSU by the setting and the new facilities but also because of the attitude.

“We don’t expect to compete, we expect to win and that goes a long way,” Lujan said.