San Jose State University Football Adds To Coaching Staff

Feb. 7, 2017

Jamar Cain, a successful North Dakota State defensive line coach; Fred Guidici, a former San Jose State assistant coach; and Ben Thienes, once a linebackers coach at Portland State, are joining the San Jose State University football staff.

Cain will be the Spartans’ new defensive line coach; Guidici, a quality control coach; and Thienes, the program’s director of football operations. Brent Brennan, San Jose State’s new head coach, made the announcement.

Cain comes to San Jose State after three seasons at North Dakota State. He was instrumental in consensus All-American Kyle Emanuel winning the 2014 Buck Buchanan Award as the best defensive player in the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS). The new San Jose State defensive line coach spent one season at Wyoming (2013), four seasons at Cal Poly (2009-12), three seasons at Missouri State (2006-08) and a season at Ohio University (2005). The 2002 New Mexico State University graduate began his college coaching career in 2004 as the recruiting coordinator at Sacramento City College.

Jamar is an outstanding defensive line coach – very technical. He’s had an incredible run the last three years at North Dakota State. He’s from Sacramento and he’s going to be a great recruiter of the Sacramento area for us. He understands (recruiting) the Bay (Area) and he understands California,” Brennan said.

Guidici was San Jose State’s special teams coordinator during the 2012 through 2014 seasons. He spent 13 seasons at nearby Menlo College and was the Oaks’ head coach during the 2009 through 2011 seasons. The 1989 San Jose State graduate also coached locally at Santa Clara and Stanford, was the Oakland Raiders defensive quality control coach in 1995, and was an assistant coach with the San Jose SaberCats of the Arena Football League for four seasons.



“Fred was here (at San Jose State) before with Coach (Mike) MacIntyre and Coach (Ron Caragher). He brings great energy. He’s going to be a great person when it comes to relationships in the Bay (Area) and knowing the in’s and out’s of San Jose State and what we need to do to be successful,” said the Spartans’ head coach.

Thienes comes to San Jose State after coaching at Portland State during the 2015 and 2016 seasons. He began his college coaching career at Ellsworth Community College as assistant coach. After three seasons at the community college level, Thienes was part of the Boise State staff for three seasons (2011-13). He was a graduate assistant for the University of Washington defensive unit in 2014.

“Ben is incredibly organized. I’ve seen him coach and teach. I saw some of the creative things he did at Portland State – marketing, recruiting, creative-wise and I thought it was something we really needed,” said Brennan. “When I talked to the (Portland State) head coach, he said to me, ‘I’m losing my best recruiter, my best position coach, my best marketer, all of it.”

“It’s great to have everyone in place. It’s been a process. We’ve hired men who are great teachers and great leaders and will be tremendous for our program,” concluded the San Jose State head coach.

Season tickets for the team’s 2017 home schedule against Cal Poly Poly, USF (South Florida), Fresno State, San Diego State, Utah State and Wyoming are available at