"Knowledge Is Good" - Emil Faber
For 2012, the UC Davis Aggies join Cal Poly-SLO in starting their first season as a football-only member of the Big Sky Conference, having come out of the Great West Conference, while depositing the rest of their sports teams in the Big West Conference. It seems that "split" affiliations for athletics is all the rage nowadays, and our friends on the farm side of the Causeway have decided to be ahead of the curve in that respect. So let's take a look at the numbers, and go from there...
UCD 2012 record: 1-0 (defeated Azusa-Pacific 41-3)
Cumulative Record versus UCD: 4-4-2
UCD 14 SJSU 13 Nope! Didn't happen. These aren't the droids you're looking for.
Last SJSU win versus UCD: 2008, 13-10
Current Streak: UCD W1
Best SJSU Streak: W2 (happened twice, 1932-1933 and 2007-2008).
Worst SJSU Streak: L2 (1922, then 1929)
Okay, then. I think it's safe to say that the Spartan fanbase is displeased about the last result against UCD (coming in Mike MacIntyre's first season en route to a 1-12 record), and after the close loss up at Stanford the SJSU supporters may well think that this game will be a walkover. It has been announced that long-time coach Bob Biggs will resign after this season, and this is the one FBS team on UCD's schedule, so they're going to be primed for this game. Add to that their travel contingent (which tends to be loud and enthusiastic when they play Bay Area teams) and you do have the ingredients for an interesting evening down at Spartan Stadium.
When THEY have the ball: Against Azusa Pacific, UCD put up 384 total yards, and their QB Randy Wright went 13-19-166-1-1 on the evening. The Daggies went 5-10 on third down, and featured a fairly balanced attack, with two backs getting more than 50 yards but no 100-yard rusher in their comparatively easy tune-up game. Look for UCD to control the clock against SJSU; against Azusa they ran the ball 39 times to 24 passes. Junior Randy Wright handled the first three quarters, giving way to sophomore London Lacy for the 4th quarter in their rout; expect Wright to go the distance against SJSU unless things get out of hand.
When WE have the ball: The Daggies managed to hold Azusa to a total of 218 yards - while Azusa still had the advantage in TOP (31-28), which suggests that Azusa was attempting to grind some clock as well. Azusa's first four drives were three-and-out until they put together a 12-play drive at the end of the first half to generate their field goal. This was not the case in the second half (particularly the third quarter) but Azusa was unable to take advantage of any chinks in the UCD armor. Look for UCD to blitz, blitz, and blitz some more in order to pressure David Fales into making unfortunate throws.
Overall preview: On paper, it's not a fair matchup. But as we found out in 2010 (no we didn't! no we didn't! no we didn't! never happened!), matchups on paper have to be played on the field, and so it is with this one. SJSU had its heart broken last Friday evening, and there are some players on the current SJSU squad that had to watch as UCD celebrated its upset of a FBS foe on their field. They won't take this opponent lightly (I hope), and SJSU should take care of business in short order.
Fearless Prediction: SJSU 35, UCD 10. Look for Blake Jurich (and possibly even Dasmen Stewart) to get some work in at QB if things go according to plan. Coach Mac's not the kind of guy to run up the score, even though there's some in the SJSU contingent who may well want to do just that. It all depends on focus - if Coach Mac can keep his kids focused on the task at hand, and not take UCD too lightly, it should be a good evening for Sparta in their home opener.
Of note: Last Friday night, while Coach Mac’s Spartans were on the field against Stanford, his son, Jay MacIntyre, was playing quarterback for (San Jose) Valley Christian High School in a game against Vacaville. Per the San Jose Mercury News After School Blog, Jay was taken from the field in an ambulance.
Valley Christian quarterback Jay MacIntyre was taken off the field in an ambulance after he was hit on a run down the sideline early in the fourth quarter. Coach Mike Machado said MacIntyre, son of San Jose State coach Mike MacIntyre, suffered no broken bones but it was still unknown whether he had a concussion.
Mike MacIntyre, after his team’s loss to Stanford, said he hoped his son suffered no more than a concussion.
Our thoughts and prayers are with Coach MacIntyre, his son Jay, and the entire MacIntyre family, and we hope for the quick and full recovery of his son.