Any preview that doesn’t conclude with the Spartans being blown out is probably sourced from The Onion or perhaps InfoWars – some outlet that hasn’t the benefit of being grounded in reality.
The reality is at every position the Ducks will have an distinct advantage in size, speed and in depth and if the Spartans are within 30 points at the half it would be a surprise.
San Jose State opened with a 44-38 loss at home to FCS UC Davis and followed that up with a 31-0 shellacking at Washington State in week two.
The Spartans coughed up 589 yards of total offense to the Aggies in the opening loss and against the Cougs accumulated a paltry 109 yards total offense include a net of nine yards rushing while allowing Washington State to run roughshod all over Martin Stadium to the tune of 420 yards passing and 124 yards rushing.
Those numbers don’t bode well for the Spartans for the rest of the season let alone against an Oregon squad that is hitting its stride as it readies for Stanford and the opening of conference play in one week.
Montel Aaron quarterbacks San Jose State and has yet to suffer an interception with 26 completions on 44 attempts and a pair of touchdowns. Line protection has been an ongoing concern with the sophomore signal caller getting sacked six times already – five of them against the Cougars.
Bailey Gaither (8 receptions, 140 yards, 2 TD) and Josh Oliver (13 receptions, 137 yards) are the Spartan’s main threats at receiver but a pass happy offense San Jose State will employ a “receiver by committee” approach beyond those two, with Aaron completing passes to 11 different players so far.
Malike Robinson was the Spartan’s lead running back against WSU but again the offensive line struggled opening lanes for the senior who was limited to 33 yards rushing against the Cougars. Tyler Nevins picked up 79 yards on 18 carries against UC Davis in the opener but did not play against Washington State.
Defensively San Jose State has been a sieve, allowing 1033 total yards and 75 points in two games, numbers that will go higher after the Ducks have their say on Saturday.
Making matters more difficult than they need be, the Spartans have also committed 21 penalties for 181 yards, have turned the ball over six times and have gone just 8 for 31 on third down.
When taken in sum, the mismatch between the Spartans and the Ducks is of epic proportion and it would be a surprise of the highest order If the final score didn’t reflect that fact once the clock strikes zero.
~ Rick Morgan
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