SPARTANS HOST NEVADA WEDNESDAY NIGHT
The San José State men's basketball team hosts first-place Nevada on Wednesday night for a 7:30 p.m. (PT) tipoff on CBS Sports Network. Tickets for the game are available now via the Spartan Ticket Office which can be reached at 408-924-7589. Spartan fans that can't make it to the game can listen to the home broadcast on KLIV 1590 AM with Justin Allegri's play-by-play call.
San José State (3-14, 0-6 MW) vs. Nevada (16-3, 5-0 MW)
Tickets: Spartan Ticket Office - (408) 924-7589
TV: CBS Sports Network
Radio: KLIV 1590 AM & KSJS 90.5 FM
JOIN THE SPARTANS AND WOLF PACK IN THE #FIGHT4LITERACY
Nevada won both meetings with the Spartans last season, continuing its recent dominance over the Spartans. The Wolf Pack lead the all-time series 57-50 but have won 17 of the last 18 meetings and 25 of the last 27. SJSU's last win over Nevada came on Feb. 18, 2014 in Reno. The last win against the Wolf Pack in San Jose came on Jan. 10, 2008 by a score of 62-60.
COMPARING AND CONTRASTING
Nevada comes in undefeated in Mountain West play and has the league's second-highest scoring offense at 82.6 points per game. San José State is winless in league play and scores 65.0 points per game, ranking 11th in the Mountain West. SJSU's Ryan Welage ranks sixth among all MW players in points per game with 17.7. Nevada has two players, Caleb Martin (19.0 ppg-2nd) and Jordan Caroline (17.0 ppg-9th) inside the league's top-10 in scoring. The Spartans have prided themselves all season long on being great rebounders and they have a plus-6.2 margin compared to Nevada's plus-2.1 margin.
TWO SPARTANS KNOW IT CAN BE DONE
Nevada has some serious "ownage" on San José State extending back decades, but current Spartans Jalen James and Brandon Mitchell were a part of SJSU's most recent win over the Wolf Pack on Feb. 18, 2014. In fact, it was James' game-winning jumper with 1.8 seconds remaining that got the Spartans over the hump. It would turn out to be SJSU's only Mountain West win of the 2013-14 season. Nevada was nowhere near the power that it currently is this season, but was a respectable 12-15, 7-7 MW and the heavy favorite at home when James and the Spartans beat them. James, and Mitchell who played 11 minutes of that game, hope to find some similar magic on Wednesday night.
SPARTANS ERASE BIG DEFICIT BUT LOSE TO AIR FORCE
San José State trailed Air Force by as many as 18 points in the first half, but battled back to take multiple leads in the second period. The Spartans used their best shooting first half of the season (58.3 percent, 14-24) to climb out of the hole and trailed, 40-34, at halftime. SJSU trailed by two points with 2:58 remaining in the game, but an 8-0 run by Air Force aided by five missed free throws by SJSU allowed the Falcons to pull out the 78-71 win in San Jose.
SPARTANS COMMIT SEASON-LOW NINE TURNOVERS
Despite a loss there were plenty of positives coming out of the game against Air Force. The most important one being SJSU's 15 assists to a season-low nine turnovers. The Spartans had turned the ball over 20 or more times in six straight games before giving it away 18 times at San Diego State (1/9). Then they cut the number in half against Air Force. SJSU's -6.4 turnover margin and its 17.8 giveaways per game rank last in all of NCAA Division I, but the Spartans now have something to build on in that department with the results from the last game.
SJSU OUT-SHOOTS ANOTHER LEAGUE FOE
San José State shot 47.1 percent (24-51) against the Falcons and held them to 41.1 percent (23-56) shooting. It is the fourth time in six games during Mountain West play that SJSU has finished with a better shooting percentage than the opponent. It's also the third time that the Spartans have made more field goals than their league foe and lost. In these game where SJSU out-shoots its opponent, it's generally turnovers and 3-point shooting that tilt the game in the opponents' favor.
JAMES RESPONDS WITH ONE OF HIS BEST GAMES
It's been an up-and-down senior year for Jalen James. Multiple nagging injuries and some of the different rotations throughout the year have limited his playing time. But after what was perhaps San José State's worse loss of the season - an 85-49 beating at San Diego State - James responded with one of his best games of the season against Air Force. He scored 13 points, had four assists, hit a pair of clutch 3-pointers and guided SJSU for a season-high 29 minutes. James started the game which made it his first time on the floor for the jump since Nov. 22, 2017 in a win over Idaho State.
BAUMANN SHOOTING WITH CONFIDENCE
Spartan Freshman Noah Baumann had been shut down in the last two games at New Mexico and San Diego State, scoring just five points in each. Baumann came into the week prior to facing those teams as the league's most accurate 3-point shooter qualifying with at least four attempts per game. The opponents responded by locking him down to a combined six shots in the two games. But Baumann found a way to get his shots against Air Force, and they dropped. He finished 4-of-8 from the field including 3-of-6 from downtown and had 11 points. Baumann is now 15-of-24 (62.5 percent) from 3-point land during MW play.