Spartans Open Homestand With Air Force On Saturday
Jan. 29, 2016
SJSU OPENS HOMESTAND WITH AIR FORCE ON SATURDAY
San José State men's basketball returns to The Event Center to open up a homestand Saturday verus Air Force for a 2:00 p.m. tip on the Mountain West Network. Air Force is half of a game ahead of SJSU in the standings, and the two teams played a tightly contested game earlier in the season in Colorado Springs. The Spartans made that game back in early January interesting with a furious 18-2 run down the stretch of the second half. Make your way to The Event Center Saturday afternoon to catch the rematch between San José State and Air Force.
San José State (6-15, 1-8 MW) vs. Air Force Falcons (10-11, 1-7 MW)
Saturday, January 30, 2016, 2:00 p.m. PST
The Event Center (5,000)
Purchase your tickets from the Spartan Ticket Office for Saturday's game as well as the February 3 contests versus the rival Fresno State Bulldogs. The office can be reached by telephone at 408-924-7589. The Spartan Ticket Office is your one stop shop for tickets to all SJSU Athletics events.
the 1979-80 team, one of the best in sjsu history, to be honored saturday
The 1979-80 men's basketball team was the second in school history to play in a NCAA Tournament. The team produced the 1980 PCAA Coach of the Year in Bill Berry, and four all-conference players. Three Spartans from the squad went on to become NBA draft picks. On Saturday 1979-80 teammates Ed Uthoff, Eddie Saunders, Steve Swarbrick, Mike Mendez, Doug Murrey, Sid Williams and Wally Rank along with team manager Charlie Wilson, will be honored together during Saturday's game.
JUST A FEW PLAYS AWAY FROM BEATING CSU
San José State went into the final three minutes at Colorado State tied up 63-63, but just a few plays kept San José State from picking up their second win during MW play. Two consecutive turnovers which led to five points for the Rams was the turning point of the game. Colorado State's offensive rebounding also hurt SJSU which allowed 20 second-chance points throughout the game.
SCHWARTZ SHOOTS WITH CONFIDNCE AT CSU
Freshman Cody Schwartz hadn't made more than three shots in any Mountain West game this season until he buried 6 out of 11 shots from downtown for 18 points at Colorado State on Wednesday night. It could have easily been more as a few went halfway down before rimming out. Although Schwartz may not be making as many shots during conference play as we know he can, his performance at Colorado State showed that the 6-foot-8 forward still has the confidence to lead the Spartans.
WELAGE DOWN, BUT NOT OUT
Ryan Welage was held to a season-low two points at Colorado State. Although some of his number took a dip, he remains at or near the top of the freshmen ranks during conference play in a number of categories. His 13.8 points per game, 20 made threes, and .417 shooting clip from downtown are all tops in the conference among freshmen.
LAST MEETING WITH AIR FORCE
Early turnovers put the San José State men's basketball team in a hole, and right when it looked like the Spartans were out of it for good, down 21 points with seven minutes to play, a late surge changed everything. Brandon Clarke threw down a dunk, Frank Rogers hit two threes and Princeton Onwas made a couple of layups and hit clutch free throws which were all part of an 18-2 run for San José State. The Spartans got as close as five points, and had a couple of chances to make it a one-possession game, but that would be all, and fell to Air Force, 64-57.
MORE ON AIR FORCE
The Falcons are just ahead of San José State with a 1-7 Mountain West record. At 61.5 points per game, Air Force's offense is ranked last in the league, while the defense is ranked ninth, allowing 76.1 points per contest. However, Air Force does have firepower and talent on the team which isn't indicative of those rankings or the team's record. Hayden Graham is averaging 14.0 points per game during league play, good for 12th among all players. Zach Moer, with his 6-foot-11 frame, is a top-10 shot blocker in the conference. Finally, Trevor Lyons, who leads the team in assists (61), is Air Force's speedy guard that loves to get out in transition, which is when the Falcons hurt their opponents most.
TRIAL BY FIRE
San José State's Mountain West foes are seeing a much different team this season then they have in recent years. Largely in part to a group of freshmen that have become the nucleus of the team. Four true freshmen: Ryan Welage, Brandon Clarke, Cody Schwartz and Jaycee Hillsman have combined to account for 51.4 percent of the entire team's minutes during conference play. Welage, Schwartz and Hillsman have started all but one Mountain West contest.
C-L-A-R-K-E SPELLS EFFICIENCY
Freshman forward Brandon Clarke has gotten better and better every game, as has his shooting percentage, which remains a team-best .721 during conference play. The Phoenix, Ariz., native came close to his third straight double-double with 14 points and eight rebounds in the loss to New Mexico. He has now grabbed multiple offensive rebounds in six of the last seven games, including a season-high seven at Fresno State. Clarke leads the team during conference play with 6.4 rebounds per game and is fourth in scoring at 8.3 points per game.
SPARTANS LOOK TO WRENCH UP THE DEFENSE
Coming into this week, San José State allowed 80 or more points in five of eight conference games, including three of the last four. The Spartans are averaging six more points per game on offense during conference play, but an average scoring margin of -17.0 over the last three games has made it tough to win. San José State's closest game of the year though, came against Colorado State, an 85-84 overtime loss. SJSU held CSU, the league's best three-point shooting team, to 27.8 percent (5-18) that night from beyond the arc.