For the fans of San Jose State and Santa Clara, schools that are located just four miles apart, this Tuesday night's men's basketball game is certainly beginning to pick up steam in regards to it's rivalistic nature.
With the resurrection of SJSU basketball under 1st year head coach, George Nessman, the Spartans look and play like a whole new south bay family!
Santa Clara travels to The Event Center on the SJSU campus for an 8 p.m. tipoff in its annual series against the Spartans. Tickets are available by calling 408-924-SJTX.
The winning team earns three points toward the annual Rivalry Series, an all-sports competition between the two schools. After winning four of the first head-to-head competitions during the fall season, Santa Clara owns an 11-2
"There is most certainly a greater sense of spirit when we play San Jose State," said Michael Zozos, co-president of the Ruff Riders, SCU's student spirit organization. "The students get a little more excited when we play the Spartans and we definitely have a healthy rivalry going. There is nothing like having one up on a rival."
Santa Clara enters Tuesday's game with a 2-1 overall record after defeating the University of the Pacific by a score of 63-60 last Saturday night at the Leavey Center on the SCU campus.
San Jose State is 3-1 on the season and currently rides a three-game win streak. The Spartans opened the season with an 88-54 loss at Texas Tech, then defeated Portland (82-53), Cal Poly (72-57) and San Diego (79-68).
Demitrius Brown leads the Spartans in scoring, averaging 15.8 points per game. Matt Misko is the only other SJSU player in double-figures with a 10.8 per game scoring average.
Three of the last four contests between San Jose State and Santa Clara have been decided by just two points. Last season, Doron Perkins scored 10 of his game-high 18 points during a four-minute stretch in the second half that led to Santa Clara's 73-60 victory at the Leavey Center.
Two seasons ago, Perkins scored 17 points, including a pair of clinching free throws in the final seconds, and Santa Clara defeated San Jose State 66-64 at The Event Center. In 2002, Brandon Hawkins' jump shot from the foul line with 3.9 seconds remaining lifted San Jose State to a 71-69 victory at the Leavey Center.
Santa Clara has won seven of the last eight contests between the two schools and owns a 67-27 series edge over the Spartans since the first meeting during the 1909-10 season.
Dean Munro, executive director of the Sports Authority, has arranged and promoted the series and hosts a celebration barbecue at the end of each season.
For tickets, call 408-924-SJTX, or check out the newly revamped SJSU web site at http://www.SJSUspartans.com today!
BUST THE BRONCOS!