Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Nevada 80, SJSU 55

Nevada owned an 11-point halftime lead and advanced it further with additional cold-shooting by San Jose State University in grabbing an 80-55 home victory over the Spartans on Wednesday.

The Washington Square crew shot 19-65 overall and a worse 2-21 from beyond the arc.

Brandon Clarke finished with 18 points plus nine boards and Gary Williams Jr. totaled 14 points. No other player was a positive factor.

Chris Murray game reports.

Jalen James was ejected via two technicals and Brandon Clarke was also whistled for one as the teams were apparently heavily yapping at one another. Note to SJSU: do not initiate or respond to silly talk when behind in the score, especially badly behind.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Rashad Muhammad's plans

"Miami transfer Rashad Muhammad will finish school at Coral Gables" -- Jon Rothstein

From this article: "...Muhammad sat out the 2015-16 season after transferring following two seasons at San Jose State. He will be eligible to play immediately for a new school in 2017-18 as a graduate transfer..."

Not to pile on but who will punch the ticket after Muhammad was let go from two basketball programs and will not have played competitive basketball for two years? 

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

SJSU 92, SUU 82

San Jose State University grabbed a 10 point halftime lead and ultimately maintained it at the end in winning 92-82 over visiting Southern Utah University 92-82 on Wednesday. SUU got within two points late but then fell back.

Guard Jalen James went for a career-high 23 points (6-10, 3-4, 8-10 overall shooting) and also provided four assists plus three rebounds. Ryan Welage contributed 22 points (5-6 accuracy from long distance) and just missed a double-double with nine rebounds and Gary Williams Jr. shot 9-10 at the foul line to finsh 17 points. He also supplied five boards and three assists. Isaiah Nichols' six assists was tops on the team.

As a team the Spartans shot 28-60, 10-20 and an astounding 26-37 overall. 20 assists were achieved on 28 baskets.


A feature on SJSU recruit Austin Galuppo

"Cal Poly basketball recruit shines at Mission Prep Christmas Classic" -- Travis Gibson

Sunday, December 18, 2016

SJSU tops Bowling Green

On Sunday, San Jose State University topped Bowling Green by one, 77-76, with sophomore forward Brandon Clarke proving himself unstoppable, including an last second score off a missed shot. He tallied 24 points (9-12 overall shooting) plus 12 boards. Frontcourt teammate Ryan Welage totaled 14 points aided by 4-7 shooting from beyond the arc.

Guard Isaac Thornton scored 10 points alongside six assists and four steals while Gary Williams Jr. totaled 10 points plus five rebounds. Plus, Brandon Mitchell posted an eight point (4-6 shooting), eight rebound line alongside a pair of blocked shots.

The Spartans were out in front 44-29 after 20 minutes and committed but 10 turnovers overall.

Bowling Green has yet to nab a road victory this season.


Saturday, December 17, 2016

A Mike Wang update )he's playing in Vegas this weekend)

Mike Wang 6’9” 2018   Mater Dei (Santa Ana CA)
Skilled “stretch 4” with very nice range and accuracy on his 3-point shot.  Wang has also improved his rebounding and defense since last summer.

His offensive game has some similiarity to Ryan Welage but both guys need to demonstrate a back-to-the-basket component to their repertoire.

Add one to the SJSU recruiting list

Not sure why Verbal Commits doesn't have San Jose State University hot after Elijah Hardy of Bishop O'Dowd. The Spartans offered in mid-July.


Excerpt: "...Now the face up of the strong and successful Bishop 0’Dowd program, the 6-foot-1 lead guard has seen his recruitment pick up a little as three schools have begun to make their mark with him. “I have been speaking probably the most with California, Santa Clara, and San Jose State,” Hardy said, a junior that hold seven scholarship offers to date.

Having visited San Jose State earlier in the fall, Hardy has been no stranger to the nearby Pac 12 program. “I go up to Cal pretty much every week,” the playmaking guard noted. “It is a great school with academics first. It really is a good family up there. Ivan (Rabb), of course, went up there so it just makes Cal that much better...”

In the current jostling, if Cal wants Hardy, they will get Hardy ... unless a national power jumps into the equation.

Friday, December 16, 2016

Jake Wojcik pledges to Sinna

Bellarmine College Prep junior guard Jake Wojcik has committed to Siena of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC).

"Siena basketball gets commitment from California guard"

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Future Spartans

The Verbal Commits site has the following prospects in the San Jose State University recruitment pipeline. But do keep in mind that names of suitors are not removed there until an actual signing happens even though the wooing between a school and a prospect may have actually ended months ago:

James Akinjo 2018 Link

Naseem Gaskin 2018 Link
Austin Galuppo 2018 Link
Jamario Bibb 2018 Link
Ryan Langborg 2019 Link

Andre Kelly 2018 Link
Deon Stroud 2019 Link

Kenneth 'Kenny' Wooten, Jr. 2017 Link
Michael Wang 2018 Link
Mason Forbes 2018 Link

It's interesting that each is a California resident. The need to search elsewhere has diminished as has the budget to sign out-of-state prospects.

At the point James Akinjo would be a solid get even though he measure 5-foot-10. His competitiveness and will to better his game stand out.

Each of the shooting guard prospects is interesting because none have yet to exhibit the ability to take over games. Ryan Langbord, who has a brother playing at Pt. Loma Nazarene in San Diego, is currently the best shooter with Austin Galuppo right up there too. Naseem Gaskin is being monitored for greater consistency while Jamario Bibb remains more slasher than outside shooter.

Andre Kelly should officially be shifted to power forward as his bulk relates to that position and it looks like he is continuing to inch upward.

Kenny Wooten Jr. isn't coming to SJSU so take him off the list. Kansas seems to be his frontrunner right now.

Michael Wang's offensive game is intriguing but there are questions about his athleticism. Is he a faceup four?

Mason Forbes has the best hair of anyone in high school ball (hit that link above), a great motor and the ability to pick new elements up quickly.

There are certainly other talents being watched and we'll try to cover those as additional names come to light.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Graham returns to Ripon

Former San Jose State University player Justin Graham has returned to his alma mater as the Associate Head Coach at Ripon High. He owns a B.A. in Communications and an M.A. in Kinesiology from SJSU.

He provided a lot of great memories for Spartan fans and his unselfish play was a living definition of being a team player.

Saturday, December 10, 2016

A blip in the schedule

Yes, the Spartans won this afternoon but we're not detailing any of the news because a game against a team such as Life Pacific at this point in the season isn't worth reporting. On to facing Bowling Green on the afternoon of December 18. The Falcons are currently 4-6 overall, 0-4 on the road.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

A bit more on Noah Baumann

From Gregg Rosenberg/Arizona Varsity in an 85-56 Desert Vista victory on Tuesday when Baumann played very little due to the score:

"6-foot-5 SG 2017 Noah Baumann (Desert Vista)

14 points (4-6) with two 3pt shots made and 2 assists.

Baumann committed to San Jose State before the HS season started and you can see why. He has deep shooting range with an ultra quick release. He plays the game with a high IQ and is a sneaky good passer. He is not normally known as the top defender, but got the nod to defend Tevian Jones and did a serviceable job on him in the 1st half. His feel for the game is high and he will shoot it well and make his teammates better." 

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Montana 81, SJSU 62

On Wednesday in Missoula, Montana took down San Jose State 81-62. The Spartans came in with a three-game win streak. The Griz shot 52% overall and went 20-23 from the foul line to 9-20 from the Washington Square crew. The hosts owned a 46-30 halftime lead.

SJSU received nine points and six rebounds from Gary (Castlemont High/Indian Hill College) Williams Jr. plus 11 points and five boards from Brandon Clarke.


Baumann continues to perform

Richard Obert: "Noah Baumann took just five shots and had 14 points for Desert Vista in 85-56 thumping of Chandler. He did not play in 2nd half"

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Noah Baumann's first game

In the first game of the season for SJSU signee Noah Baumann, he posted a line of 28 points, seven rebounds and three assists for his Desert Vista High team.

Seeking a recount

Chris Murray's weekly MWC team rankings:


Last week: 11
Record: 4-3
Comment: San Jose State moved over the .500 mark with wins over Idaho and Santa Clara - it didn't get to compete in the MW-MVC Challenge - and ranks fifth in the MW in RPI, although it is last in the Sagarin Ratings and Ken Pomeroy ratings, so some advanced sites are still dubious. On the plus side, SJSU is coming off back-to-back strong defensive efforts and is forcing a MW-best 15.4 turnovers per game."

Jeez, what's a team got to do?

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Taking a look at SJSU -- a collection of thoughts

What a wild ride it has been so far this season -- winnable home games that were losses versus Portland and Denver, an uptick versus St. Mary's, followed by road victories versus Washington State (what a stinker of a team the Cougars are this season, having just been routed at home 70-54 by New Orleans) and then Idaho, and then finally taking down Santa Clara.

Upcoming Montana, Bowling Green and Southern Utah matchups are all winnable contests so it's looking positive. Which is critical because but this season will positively/negatively effect the talented Bay Area and northern California recruits being so heavily pursued in the next two classes. A positive non-conference record will bring momentum entering Mountain West Conference play and the Spartans need a .500 record there.

Still, we're calling this a bridge season because the team is not "there" yet, being too young, too inexperienced and thus inconsistent.

There remains a need for a breakout player who can always be counted on for a certain number of points or points plus rebounds each game. Maybe that is Ryan Welage. But who will it be in the backcourt?

The improvement in defensive effort and outcome is most heartening. It must be team wide due to some physical deficiencies and that it has been.

Player notes

All this is happening without a significant contribution from Ryan Singer (which blows up my pre-season prediction).

Maybe Jaycee Hillsman simply has range to 15 or so feet and isn't a three-point shooter considering his numbers both last season and thus far: 17-31, 1-7, 29-32

A redshirt class of Nai Carlisle and Keith Fisher III combined with incoming Noah Baumann looks really solid for next season. A 6-foot-10 serviceable center (one good at a couple of tasks -- rebounding and defensive presence, please) would still really help. The key for the success of any mid-major program is grabbing guys who are more than single talent prospects.

Gotta love the steadiness of Isaac Thornton. Yes, there certainly are holes in his game but play to his strengths, steer away from his weaknesses and that's good enough.

Not sure what is up with Cody Schwartz but playing time next season (yes, it's still far off) is looking very minimal considering the returnees and newcomers.

Again looking far ahead: will Brandon Mitchell be in a situation at the end of the academic year of graduating and transferring elsewhere for his final year of athletic eligibility? A lower level would bring much more court time.

Jalen James sports 18/6 assist-to-turnover numbers -- keep it coming. Like Mitchell, James is another candidate for graduate transfer status but he just may want to be part of what should be the best Spartan squad during his tenure.

Not sure how much Brandon Clarke has improved his shot -- he started out better but his free throw percentage is 57%.

Isaiah Nichols has displayed the typical ups-and-downs of most freshman campaigns thus far but his future is definitely a bright one.

Love the IQ and hustle of E.J. Boyce but not yet seeing him as a steady contributor at the Mountain Wes Conference level.

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Saturday: SJSU 55, SC 40 -- make it three in a row

In a rivalry matchup with a final score that lends more to mid-way through the second half of a game, San Jose State University handled Santa Clara 55-49 on Saturday. The Broncos were held to a meager 28% shooting, managing just 14 points in the second half.

Sophomore forward Ryan Welage led the way with an efficient 12 points and the same for freshman guard Isaiah Nichols who shot 5-8 overall. But it was Isaac Thornton with the best variety of production via six points, four assists, three rebounds and a trio of steals.

Bronco forward Nate Kratch, who clobbered SJSU last season with 29 points plus 12 boards, went for five points and one rebound in 20 minutes.


Thursday, December 1, 2016

A C.J. Webster update

Former Spartan big C.J. Webster is now a head coach in the Women’s’ Minor League Basketball Association (WLMBA), a seven team league with a number of the clubs based in Texas. It looks like it's a hoops startup.

After SJSU, Webster played in Australia, Kosovo and Venezuela before returning to the U.S. to suit up for the Albany Blazers and the Cleveland Havoc.

He is working for the Texas Health and Human Services Commission.

Wish it had all turned out differently back then but conflicting personalities prevented that from happening.

An Elijah Hardy update

He's still far off in the reruiting universe but a recent article on 2018 Bishop O'Dowd point guard Elijah Hardy has him saying those after him the most (presumably making the most consistent contact) are California, Santa Clara and San Jose State University. If landed, he would be the best recruit in decades, if not ever, for the Spartans but Cal will be very hard to beat.