Men's Basketball Heads To Air Force For Wednesday Night Game

Jan. 13, 2014

Game NotesGet Acrobat Reader

Next Game:

Wed., Jan 15, at Air Force (8-7, 2-2)

Clune Arena (5,843)

7:00 p.m. MST

VIDEO:  www.themw.com

RADIO:  KSJS 90.5 FM

Justin Allegri, Play-by-Play

SPARTANS ON THE ROAD FOR TWO MOUNTAIN WEST GAMES:  San José State goes on the road this week for two Mountain West games.  The team begins the trip by playing at Air Force on Wednesday and ends week with a game at Wyoming on Saturday.

San José State is looking for its first Mountain West win after falling in its first four conference games this season - 69-65 to New Mexico, 66-64 to Colorado State, 86-67 at Utah State and 62-50 to Nevada.

LIVE STATS:  All games will have live stats available on the Spartan website at www.SJSUSpartans.com.

RADIO COVERAGE:  All San José State men's basketball games are broadcast on KSJS, 90.5 FM, and can be heard on ksjs.org.  Saturday games can be heard on KLIV, 1590 AM, and at kliv.com.   Justin Allegri calls the action for the Spartans.

TV/VIDEO COVERAGE:  Both games this week can be send on the Mountain West Network at www.them.com.

All home San José State men's basketball games can be see on the Mountain West Network at www.themw.com and at www.sjsuspartans.com/videos.

FACEBOOK/TWITTER:  Follow the Spartan men's basketball team (@SJSUMBB) and all San José State athletics teams on the web.  Join the official SJSU Spartans page on Facebook and read the latest tweets on Twitter @SJSUAthletics. 

TICKETS:  Tickets for all San José State men's basketball tickets may be purchased by visiting the Spartan Ticket Office, calling (408) 924-SJTX, at any Ticketmaster outlet, on the web at www.sjsuspartans.com, or at The Event Center Box Office.

ABOUT AIR FORCE:  The Falcons enter Wednesday night's game with an 8-7 overall record and a 2-2 Mountain West mark, tying Colorado State for fourth place in the Mountain West standings.  The team fell to #13/15 San Diego State, 79-72, Sunday afternoon at home, and lost at Fresno State last Wednesday, 71-65.s.  Air Force has conference wins against Utah State, 73-72, and at UNLV, 75-68.

Head coach Dave Pilipovich is in his second full season as head coach after taking over the program on February 8, 2012, and named the permanent head coach on March 3, 2012.  He has a 28-27 coaching record. 

Three Falcons average double-figures in scoring, led by Tre' Coggins at 17.8 points per game, the sixth-best scorer in the Mountain West.  Max Yon averages 13.9 points, while Marek Olesinski is at 11.9 points per game. 

San José State has won all three games in the series with Air Force.

Series Meetings

12/6/72            W            74-67            Colorado Springs, Colo.

1/16/97            W            62-45            The Event Center

2/13/97            W            88-77            Colorado Springs, Colo.

NEW SPARTAN HEAD COACH DAVE WOJCIK:  San José State head men's basketball coach Dave Wojcik is in his first year at the helm of the program.  He spent the past three seasons as the associate head coach on Leon Rice's staff at Boise State.  Wojcik recorded her first head-coaching win on November 20, 2013, with an 83-77 win at Pepperdine.

Wojcik and his brother Doug, head coach at the College of Charleston, are one of seven pair of brothers to be head coaches at Division I.  A complete listing is on page 6.

LAST TIME OUT:  Jaleel Williams scored a career-high 24 points for the Spartans in a 69-65 loss to New Mexico last Saturday night at The Event Center.

Williams made 9 of his first 13 shots from the field including six 3-pointers. Williams also had eight rebounds in the loss.

San José State had two possessions in the final 40 seconds to tie the game, but Williams was unable to make either of his field goal tries on out-of-bounds plays.

Led by 6-foot-3 guard Isaac Thornton with a season-best and game-high 11 rebounds, the Spartans out-rebounded the taller Lobos, 42-37.

 The Lobos shot a season-low 55.6 percent (15-of-27), but made 6-of-8 in the last two minutes for their fifth win in a row. San José State went to the line just nine times.

There were 17 lead changes and the game was tied eight times including 63-63 after San José State's Rashad Muhammad hit a 3-pointer with 1:30 remaining. Muhammad finished with 16 points.

SPARTAN SIXTH MAN LEADS TEAM IN SCORING:  Freshman guard Rashad Muhammad leads the San José State team in scoring this season with 277 points, 17.3 points per game.  He has played in all 16 games this season, but started just one (Weber State).  He has led the team in scoring in 10 games this year, coming off the bench in nine of those games. 

Of the top-120 scorers nationally through January 12, Muhammad is 119th and is one of just four freshmen on the list.  He is listed in the top-250 in eight categories.

Muhammad National Rankings (as of 1/13)

Points/Game            119th            16.6 ppg

Field Goal Pct.            248th            43.0%

3-pt FG/GM            18th            3.25 pg

3-pt FGM            17th            52

3-pt FGA            47th            111

3-pt Pct.            14th            46.8%

Free Throw Pct.            138th            82.3%

Total Points            119th            277

Muhammad scored a season-high 28 points in a three-overtime win against UC Davis and in a loss to Colorado State.  He leads the team in three-pointers, making 52 of his 111 attempts this year.  He is also the best free throw shooter, making 65-of-79 attempts (82.2%). 

The last freshman to lead San José State in scoring was Stony Evans who averaged 9.9 points during the 1983-84 season (276 points in 28 games).  That team, coached by Bill Berry, finished the season 10-18.  Evans also led the team in rebounding with 176, 6.3 per game.

THREE-POINT SHOOTING RANKS AMONG THE BEST IN THE NATION:  San José State's three-point shooting ranks among the elite of the NCAA this season.  The Spartans rank in the top-four in three different three-point categories through games of January 12.  The Spartans are second in three-point field goal attempts at 438 (VMI #1 at 472), tied for third with Belmont in total three-point field goals at 162 (Creighton #1 at 184) and fourth in three-point field goals per game at 10.1 per game (Creighton #1 at 11.5 pg).

WILSON ALSO RANKS NATIONALLY IN THREE-POINT SHOOTING:  Devante Wilson ranks in the top-105 nationally in three three-point shooting categories.  He is 77th in three-point attempts at 77; 96th in total three-pointers made at 37; and 103rd in three-point field goals per game at 2.31 pg. 

GAME SCHOOL RECORD TIED, THEN BROKEN:  Twice this season, San José State made 14 three-pointers in a game.  But last Saturday, the Spartans decided to break that record by making 15 three-pointers in an 86-67 loss at Utah State.  The 15 threes broke the old record of 14, set in wins at Pepperdine and at Houston and against Louisiana Tech on January 13, 2005.

In the game at Utah State, six different players hit at least one three-pointer.  Rashad Muhammad led the team, going 6-for-9 from behind arc.  Devante Wilson and Jaleel Williams each made three three-pointers, while Chris Cunningham, D.J. Brown and Jalen James each made one.

JAMES ETCHES HIS NAME INTO SAN JOSÉ STATE HISTORY:  Freshman Jalen James recorded just the second triple-double in San José State history with his 12 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists in a 72-68 win at Houston on December 7.  James joins Brandon Hawkins who had 18 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists against Notre Dame de Namur on Dec. 18, 2001.

James is only the third Mountain West player to record a triple-double - Mark Dickel (UNLV), 17 points, 10 rebounds, 12 assists on Nov. 19, 1999; and Justin Williams (Wyoming) 10 points, 15 rebounds, 12 blocks on March 10, 2006.

THREE-OVERTIME GAME CLUB:  With San José State's three-overtime game against UC Davis on December 18, the Spartans are one of 11 teams nationally to have played a triple-overtime game this season.  Through January 11, eight games have gone to three overtimes including two last Saturday.  Drexel has played in two triple-overtime games.

WILLIAMS MAKING AN IMPACT THIS SEASON:  After scoring just 68 points the first two years of his Spartan career, Jaleel Williams has scored 199 points in 16 games and is second on the team in scoring at 12.4 points per game. He has led the Spartans in scoring in five games including a career-high 24 points last Saturday night against New Mexico.  He has scored 20 or more points in two other games this season - 22 points in a win at Pepperdine and 20 points in the season opener at Santa Clara.

Williams also recorded his first career double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds against Pacifica.  He was 5-for-8 from the field in the game, including 1-for-3 from three-point range, and a perfect 3-for-3 from the free throw line.

COMEBACK KIDS, NEVER COUNT THEM OUT:  In four of the six Spartan wins this season, San José State has overcome double-digit deficits for the win.  The largest deficit was 19 points against UC Davis (32-23 and 47-28) in an 89-85, three overtime win at The Event Center.  San José State trailed Westminster (45-32) before winning 73-66.  On the road Houston led by as many as 15 (22-7) before the Spartans won 72-68, and Pepperdine led by 14 (40-26) before San José State outscored then in the second half (49-33) en route to the 83-77 win. 

            Since 2002, San José State has overcome a deficit of 13 points or more for the win in 13 games.  Twice, the team has had to overcome a 19-point deficit, and three games went to at least one overtime before the Spartans won.

-19            vs. UC Davis (2nd half)            89-85 (3OT)            12/16/13

-19            at CSU Bakersfield (1st half)            78-70            1/23/12

-18            vs. New Mexico State (1st half)            93-84            1/23/10

-18            at Portland State (1st half)            76-73 (OT)            12/28/07

-17            vs. South Dakota State (2nd half)            77-71 (OT)            12/30/07

-15            at Houston (1st half)            72-68            12/7/13

-15            vs. Coppin State (1st half)            81-66            12/29/11

-14            at Pepperdine (1st half)            83-77            11/20/13

-14            vs. UTSA (1st half)            72-66            11/30/11

-14            vs. Fairleigh Dickinson (2nd half)            65-57            11/14/01

-14            vs. Tulsa (1st half)            76-69            1/27/05

-13            vs. Westminster (2nd half)            73-66            12/21/13

-13            vs. Rice (2nd half)            58-57            3/5/02

QUINTUPLE OF SCORERS:  For the first time since the 2010-11 season, San José State had five players score 10 or more points in a game.  Against Pacifica on December 28, Rashad Muhammad led the Spartans with 19 points, followed by Jaleel Williams with 14 points, Chris Cunningham and Devante Wilson each with 13 points, and Matt Pollard with 10 points.

CONFERENCE OPENERS:  For the first time since 2010, San José State opened the conference portion of the schedule at home with the 62-50 loss to Nevada.  The last time the Spartans opened the conference schedule at home came during the 2009-10 season when the team won 78-75 over Idaho on January 4, 2010, when San José State was a member of the Western Athletic Conference.

HOME, SWEET HOME:  After playing eight of its first nine games of the season on the road, the Spartans played four consecutive home games from December 18-January 1. San José State was the only Mountain West team to have a perfect home record (4-0) heading into conference play.  The Spartans defeated Cal State Fullerton, 81-59, on November 23, UC Davis, 89-85 (3OT) on December 18, Westminster, 73-66, on December 21, and Pacifica, 87-59, on December 28.

UNDEFEATED DECEMBER:  San José State entered the new year with a four-game winning streak after going undefeated in the month of December - defeating Pacifica (87-59) on the 28th, Westminster (73-66) on the 21st, UC Davis on the 18th (89-85, 3OT) and Houston on the 7th (72-68). 

            Since the 1996-97 season, the Spartans have recorded a better-than .500 record in nine Decembers.

1996-97            7-1            2009-10            5-2

1998-99            5-2            2010-11            4-3

2000-01            5-2            2012-13            5-2

2003-04            4-3            2013-14            4-0

2008-09            4-2

TWO SPARTANS, 20+ POINTS IN A GAME:  Twice this season, two San José State players have scored 20 or more points in a game.  The latest came in a win over UC Davis as Rashad Muhammad scored a career-best 28 points, and Devante Wilson added a season-best 22 points.  At Pepperdine, Jaleel Williams led the Spartans with a career-best 22 points, while Wilson scored 20 points in his first start of the season. 

QUARTET OF SPARTAN SCORERS:  In five of the 16 games this season, a quartet of San José State scorers have recorded double-digit scoring games.

Milwaukee - Muhammad 17, James 12, Williams, 11, Mitchell 10

N. Illinois - Williams 13, Brown 12, James 11, Muhammad 11

Pepperdine - Williams 22, Wilson 20, Muhammad 14, Brown 14

CS Fullerton - Muhammad 17, Brown 17, Wilson 16, Cunningham 13

UC Davis - Muhammad 28, Wilson 22, Cunningham 13, Thornton 12

MOUNTAIN WEST Co-PLAYER OF THE WEEK:  Jalen James was named the Mountain West Men's Basketball Co-Player of the Week on Dec. 9, after his triple-double performance at Houston.  James was honored along with Cameron Bairstow of New Mexico.

James recorded career highs of 12 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists in 38 minutes of play at Houston.  He was 3-for-4 from the field including 2-for-2 from three-point range and 4-for-4 from the free throw line.  His four made free throws came in the final 17 seconds of the game to secure the victory.

James is one of seven players nationally this year to record a triple-double and the only freshman to accomplish this feat.

THREE-POINT ATTEMPTS GAME RECORD BROKEN:  With 40 three-pointers attempted as a team on November 17, the Spartans set a single-game record for the most three-pointers attempted in a game.  San José State was 10-for-40 from three-point range against James Madison at the NIU Invitational.  The 40 attempts breaks the old record of 32 (10-of-23) shot against Boise State on January 6, 2011.  The 2011 game went four overtimes, and ironically, current Spartan head coach Dave Wojcik was an assistant coach for Boise State that night.

The 40 three-point attempts also tied the Mountain West record set on March 1, 2003, as Utah played at New Mexico. 

CUNNINGHAM GRABBING BOARDS:  Chris Cunningham leads the team in rebounding with 106, 6.6 per game.  He has recorded three double-doubles this season - 13 points and 10 rebounds versus CS Fullerton; 10 points and a season-high 14 rebounds at Weber State; and 18 points and 11 rebounds against Westminster.  Cunningham has 11 double-doubles in his Spartan career.  He leads the team with 15 blocked shots.

DISHIN' OUT THE ROCK:  Two Spartans have 50 or more assists on the season.  Jalen James leads the team with 57 assists, while D.J. Brown has 53 assists.  James had 10 assists at Houston, while Brown dished out six assists at Santa Clara and at Weber State.

LARGEST WINNING MARGIN SINCE 2011:  With the 81-59 win over Cal State Fullerton on November 23, the Spartans recorded the biggest win of 20 or more points over a Division I school since 2011-12.  San José State defeated UC Davis, 79-59, on December 20, 2011. 

WAKE UP WITH WOJCIK:  Spartan head coach Dave Wojcik hosts a monthly breakfast get-together at Rosie's New York Pizza at 1285 The Alameda in San José.  He discusses the X's and O's of basketball, recruiting and general basketball topics throughout the season.  A full breakfast is served, but an RSVP is required.  Cost is $25 per person which includes a donation to Spartan Foundation.  The next breakfast is scheduled for Tuesday, February 4.  To RSVP, please contact Blake Sasaki at 408-924-3300 or blake.sasaki@sjsu.edu.

UP NEXT:  The Spartans continue on the road with a game at Wyoming this Saturday, January 18, at 2 p.m. MST/1 p.m. PST.