It is never easy to go on the road and play the No. 1 team in the country in college football.
Coming off of a 2-10 campaign the previous year certainly doesn’t bode well for one’s confidence, but San Jose State will nonetheless look to show the college football world that it can play with the nation’s elite.
The Spartans invade Tuscaloosa Saturday evening (6 p.m. CST) for a date with the Alabama Crimson Tide, a team fresh-off yet another national championship this past January.
While ‘Bama lost a number of last year’s players to the NFL, the Crimson Tide come into the season ranked on top of most people’s polls.
For San Jose State to have a decent shot at scoring the biggest upset of week one of the season, it will have to keep the Alabama offense off the field as much as possible and move the ball on its own.
Making that task more difficult for new head coach Mike MacIntyre will be replacing a pair of receivers, Kevin Jurovich and Marquis Avery, who combined for 102 catches and seven touchdowns a season ago.
The Spartans managed only 13.8 points and 284 yards per game last season, with QB Jordan La Secla passing for 1,926 yards.
On defense, the Spartans are likely to be led by defensive tackle Pablo Garcia, who tied for the team lead with four sacks in 2009 and safety Duke Ihenacho, a two-time all-WAC selection with six career picks.
With Alabama around a 37.5 favorite in this contest, the Spartans hope to move the ball, keep Alabama’s offense off the field, and see what fate has in store for them.
As if things were not tough enough this week for San Jose State, it then travels to No. 12 Wisconsin next weekend.
Can you say big pay days?
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Written by Dave Thomas