|Men's Basketball Hosts Second-Place WAC Teams|
Thurs., Feb. 14
New Mexico State (17-8, 11-2)
The Event Center, San Jose, Calif.
7:00 p.m. PST
KSJS 90.5 FM
SPARTANS FACE TOP WAC TEAMS THIS WEEK: San Jose State continues its three-game homestand with two Western Athletic Conference games this week. The Spartans host second-place New Mexico State Thursday night and second-place Denver on Saturday night. Both teams are 11-2 in the WAC.
San Jose State enters Thursday’s game with a 9-14 overall record and a 3-9 conference mark. The Spartans fell at home to Utah State, 63-36, last Friday night at The Event Center. D.J. Brown led the team with 16 points including 4-for-9 from three-point range. Chris Cunningham added 10 points and grabbed nine rebounds.
LIVE STATS: All games will have live stats available on the Spartan website at www.SJSUSpartans.com and go to “Live Stats.”
RADIO COVERAGE: Thursday’s game will be broadcast on KSJS 90.5 FM. Justin Allegri will call the action with pregame show starting 15 minutes prior to tip.
VIDEO COVERAGE: All home San Jose State games are available on the Gold Zone on the Spartan website at www.sjsuspartans.com, for a nominal fee.
FACEBOOK/TWITTER: Follow the Spartan men’s basketball team and all San Jose State athletics teams on the web. Join the official SJSU Spartans page on Facebook and read the latest tweets on Twitter @SJSUAthletics.
PARKING: Parking for all fans is available in the Seventh Street Garage, located on the corner of Seventh and San Salvador Streets, for $5, cash only.
ABOUT NEW MEXICO STATE: The Aggies enter Thursday night’s game with a 17-8 overall record and an 11-2 WAC mark, good for second in the conference standings. The team has won 11 consecutive games after starting the WAC season 0-2.
Head coach Marvin Menzies is in his sixth year at the school. He has guided the Aggies to two WAC Tournament Championships and two NCAA Tournament berths.
Three players average double-figure points for the Aggies, led by Daniel Mullings at 14.4 points per game. Bandja Sy averages 11.2 points and is the team leader in rebounding at 183, 7.3 per game. Sun Bhullar is averaging 10.2 points per game and leads the team with 51 blocked shots.
New Mexico State leads the overall series, 33-12. The Aggies won the earlier meeting this season, 70-53, on January 19. LaVanne Pennington tied his career high with a team-best 16 points, and the bench contributed 25 points, but a seven-minute scoring drought by San Jose State contributed to the loss. Aalim Moor, Jaleel Williams and Stephon Smith came off the bench to score 25 points.
SAN JOSE STATE HEAD COACH: George Nessman is in his eighth season as head coach at San Jose State. He has an 86-155 record in eight seasons.
LAST TIME OUT: D.J. Brown scored 16 points, and Chris Cunningham grabbed nine rebounds, but San Jose State fell to Utah State, 63-36, last Friday night at The Event Center.
Brown led the team in scoring for the second consecutive game. He was 4-for-9 from three-point range and had three steals in 35 minutes of action.
Cunningham was the only other Spartan to score in double figures with 10 points. He also added two blocked shots in 37 minutes of play.
The Spartans featured the seventh different starting lineup this season.
NATIONAL RANKINGS: As of games through Feb. 10, two Spartans rank in the top-75 in three categories. Chris Cunningham is tied for 44th in rebounds at 9.0 per game and tied for 66th in double-doubles with 7. Alex Brown is tied for 61st in blocked shots at 1.96 per game.
LOWEST POINT TOTALS IN OVER A YEAR: The Spartans have scored less than 40 points twice this season - 36 points against Utah State last week and 37 points at Denver. They are the lowest outputs since last season when the team scored 40 points in a 47-40 loss to Cal Poly last season (Dec. 10, 2011). The Spartans also scored just 36 points in an 81-36 loss at California on Dec. 7, 2011.
LEADING SCORER OFF THE BENCH: Twice this season, a Spartan came off the bench to lead the team in scoring. The latest came last Saturday night as D.J. Brown came off the bench and scored a team-high 18 points in 31 minutes of action. He was 5-of-15 from the field including 3-of-8 from three-point range. Brown also dished out five assists and grabbed seven rebounds.
Against Louisiana Tech, Aalim Moor came off the San Jose State bench and led the team in scoring with a career-high 14 points. He was 6-for-12 from the field and dished out a career-best four assists in 17 minutes of action.
Before this season, the last Spartan to come off the bench and lead the team in scoring was during the 2009-10 season. Robert Owens scored 22 points in a 59-55 win over Pacific on November 28, 2009. He was 8-of-12 from the field including 6-of-8 from three-point range.
CUNNINGHAM CLEANING THE GLASS: Chris Cunningham leads the team with 208 rebounds and averages 9.0 per game, tying for 44th in the country. He had five consecutive games with double-digit rebounds - 18 against UC Santa Cruz , 11 at #10 Kansas, 10 at Montana State and at UC Davis and 17 against Sacramento State. Cunningham grabbed 10 offensive rebounds against the Hornets, nine offensive at Idaho and six offensive rebounds at UC Davis. He grabbed 18 rebounds at Idaho.
STARTING LINEUPS: After using just three different starting lineups in the first 15 games of the season, San Jose State has used five different lineups in the past eight games. The past three games have featured different lineups for the team. The latest lineup against Utah State was D.J. Brown, Aalim Moor, Louis Garrett, David Andoh and Chris Cunningham. Below are the lineups used this season.
#2 - D.J. Brown, Kinney, Garrett, Cunningham, A. Brown - 5-1
#3 - D.J. Brown, Pennington, Garrett, Cunningham, A. Brown - 0-3
#4 - D.J. Brown, X. Jones, Pennington, Cunningham, A. Brown - 0-3
#5 - D.J. Brown, X. Jones, Pennington, Smith, Cunningham - 0-1
#6 - Moor, X. Jones, Garrett, Andoh, Cunningham - 0-1
#7 - D.J. Brown, Moor, Garrett, Andoh, Cunningham - 0-1
BACK TO SEA LEVEL: San Jose State played three consecutive games in January at elevations above 4,000 feet. The Spartans started at Utah State (4,534 feet) on Jan. 11, followed by a games at Denver (5,183 feet) on Jan. 17, and at Las Cruces (4,000 feet) on Jan. 19.
BLOCKIN’ THE BALL: Alex Brown alters shots on the court and has a team-best 45 blocks on the season. He had a season-best five blocks against Weber State and has blocked a least one shot in 19 games this season. He is third on the San Jose State single-season list with 45 blocks this season after passing Chris Oakes with two blocks at Idaho.
Brown needs four blocks to tie Menelik Barbary for second place with 49 blocks, but would have to block 17 shots to tie Gerald Thomas for the school record at 62.
BLOCKED SHOTS (Since 1979)
Name Season Games BS
1. Gerald Thomas 1988 29 62
2. Menelik Barbary 2007 30 49
3. Alex Brown 2013 23 45
4. Chris Oakes 2010 31 44
4. Darnell Williams 2000 30 43
6. Chris Oakes 2009 30 40
7. Menelik Barbary 2006 31 38
8. Chris McNealy 1983 28 34
9. Darnell Williams 2001 28 32
10. Marion Thurmond 2002 32 31
FIRST STARTS: Over the past three games, three players have got their first start of their season/career for the Spartans. Stephon Smith made his first start of the year at Seattle U. Senior Aalim Moor made his first career start at Idaho and scored six points. Freshman David Andoh made his first start as a Spartan at Idaho where he contributed four points and six rebounds.
CAREER BLOCKS LIST: With his 45 blocks, Alex Brown has already moved onto the San Jose State career blocks list. He is now ninth all-time in just 23 games played.
BLOCKED SHOTS (Since 1979)
Name Seasons G BS
1. Gerald Thomas 1984, 86-88 113 127
2. Chris Oakes 2008-10 83 111
3. Menelik Barbary 2006-07 61 87
4. Chris McNealy 1981-83 81 81
5. Darnell Williams 2000-01 58 75
6. Lance Holloway 2004, 06-08 87 58
7. Kevin Logan 1990-93 106 58
8. Mike Brotherton 1991, 93-95 104 55
9. Alex Brown 2013 23 45
10. Marion Thurmond 2001-02 60 44
D.J. BROWN NO TURNOVERS: In five games this season (including the previous two), D.J. Brown has committed zero turnovers in a game - vs. Idaho (twice), at UC Davis and vs. Utah State (twice). Against Idaho, he dished out four assists and had three steals. At UC Davis, Brown had no turnovers in 35 minutes of action as he scored 12 points, dished out six assists and grabbed five rebounds. At Utah State, he led the team in scoring with 16 points and added two assists in 35 minutes of action. At Idaho, Brown scored 18 points, grabbed seven rebounds and dished out five assists. Against Utah State, he added 16 points and had three steals.
FOUR STARTERS IN DOUBLE FIGURES: For the first time this season, four of the five Spartan starters scored in double figures in the win over New Orleans. Louis Garrett led the team with 14 points, followed by Alex Brown and D.J. Brown each with 13 points and Chris Cunningham with 11 points.
SINGLE-DIGIT TURNOVERS: In five games in 2013, San Jose State committed nine or fewer turnovers in a game. Against Idaho on January 3, the Spartans had a season-low five turnovers. Then against New Orleans on January 8, San Jose State had nine turnovers. At Utah State on January 11, the Spartans has just six turnovers. San Jose State tied its season low with five turnovers at Idaho on February 2.
MORE BLOCKS THIS YEAR: San Jose State’s added height is paying dividends this season, especially defensively. The team has recorded 83 blocks, surpassing last year’s total of 38 blocks in 31 games and 2010-11’s total of 82 blocks, and has had at least one block in 21 games. The season school record for blocks is 106 blocks in 29 games during the 1987-88 season.
DOUBLE-DOUBLES: Chris Cunningham has seven double-doubles on the season as he led the Spartans with 19 points and 18 rebounds in a win over UC Santa Cruz. He added 15 points and 10 rebounds in a win at Montana State, 12 points and 10 rebounds at UC Davis, 10 points and 17 rebounds against Sacramento State, 11 points and 14 rebounds at Texas State, 13 points and 10 rebounds against UT Arlington and 12 points and 11 rebounds at Seattle U.
2013 WAC TOURNAMENT: The 2013 WAC Men’s Basketball Tournament will be held March 12 and 14-16 at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas, Nev. All 10 team advance to the tournament, with teams 7-10 playing on the 12th, and the eight remaining teams in the tournament playing on the 14th. The championship game will be shown live on ESPNU on the 16th at 8 p.m. PST.
UP NEXT: San Jose State finishes the homestand with a game on Saturday against Denver. Tip is set for 7 p.m., at The Event Center.