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San Jose State preview: fight the mediocrity!

Previewing the WAC seems like a good job for an intern. Unfortunately, we do not have an intern. Ugh. Today: San Jose State

 San Jose State

 Team motto: "Attack the lower tier of the WAC"

Two years ago, the San Jose State Spartans were 9-4 and winners of the New Mexico Bowl. Last year, the Spartans were 5-7 and winners over UC Davis. In the immortal words of Mike LaFontaine, "Wha' Happened?"

The 2007 Spartans had a lot working against them. They opened with a difficult schedule that saw them start out 0-3. They lost starting running back Yonus Davis for the season to injury. They forgot to recruit impact players. Taking Hawaii to overtime was a good sign, but scoring a combined seven points against Fresno State and Boise State wasn't. When all was said and done, the Spartans were stuck in WAC mediocrity, not good enough to scare anyone but not bad enough to be confused with Idaho. Enjoying the Dick Tomey era yet, Spartan fans?

Five Questions

Is Kyle Reed the next Steve DeBerg or Jeff Garcia?

Forget DeBerg and Garcia. The Spartans would be ecstatic if Reed was the next Adam Tafralis. A transfer from Cal, Reed is battling for Tafralis' old QB spot with Myles Eden and Jordan LaScela. He may have the upper hand simply because he did, at one point, have Pac-10 talent. That should be good enough to fill Tafralis' "Don't blame me, I complete 62 percent of my passes" shoes.

What were you thinking when you chose Jeff Schweiger as your preseason WAC defensive player of the year?

Thinking outside of the box is good, provided that the box is full of Hawaii players. Schweiger seemed like a good pick because we see him and the SJSU defense being a key to the Spartans' "success" this year. Schweiger, a transfer from USC, and Coye Francies, a CB transfer from Oregon State, will take on the responsibility of the departed Dwight Lowery and Matt Castelo. A better question might be why Pac-10 players want to transfer to San Jose State.

Will I have to wake up at 9:00 a.m. to watch the SJSU-Boise State game?

Fortunately, no. The Spartans love to start their Saturday games smack dab in the middle of Dragonball Z, but they won't have the luxury of catching the Broncos mid-Pop Tart this year. The two teams face off on a Friday night ESPN2 telecast. Guess we'll have to tape the Bill Engvall Show.

Tell me a joke.

What do the San Jose State offensive line and George O'Leary's resume have in common? Both are unreliable and full of holes.

Is Yonus Davis the first person in the history of football to miss an entire season due to a sprained ankle?

Yes, probably. Davis suffered the injury on the Spartans' first offensive play last season, and he was barely heard from again. His final numbers: 3 carries, 1 yard, 500 rolls of Ace bandage. Davis was awarded a sixth year of eligibility, giving him one more chance to run over WAC defenses and call dibs on the rehab hot tub. Tommy Boy quote!

Tommy: You know, a lot of people go to college for six years.

Richard: I know. They're called doctors.


+/- 76 Times Kevin Jurovich is wide open and nobody sees him

+/- 4 How many games it takes for us to regret picking Jeff Schweiger as WAC defensive player of the year

+/- 10 SJSU third-down conversion percentage

Recognizing what went wrong last year should help the Spartans creep back toward moderate respectability. An easier schedule should help (Hey there, San Diego State!). The return of Yonus Davis won't hurt (not the last time you'll see "hurt" and "Yonus" in the same sentence this season). And the addition of impact transfers on offense and defense should make a difference.

Still, unless the Spartans have plans to upset one of the top teams in the WAC, they will continue to tow the line just above awful, just below talented, and all over ordinary.

Perfect situation:

Stanford and Nebraska forfeit their non-conference games, Kevin Jurovich grows six inches and learns to throw go routes to himself, Jeff Schweiger becomes an All-American, and San Jose State goes to a bowl other than the New Mexico Bowl.


The San Jose offense struggles with a new quarterback and porous offensive line, the defense guts out wins over San Diego State and Hawaii, the Spartans get to 6-3 before losing their final three games, and Dick Tomey's lobbying for a New Mexico Bowl berth falls on deaf ears.

Final record: 

6-6 overall, 4-4 conference