In his second season, former Arizona coach Dick Tomey has San Jose State thinking it's a contender in the WAC, and with a favorable schedule and Fresno State struggling, a once-improbable strong finish now appears likely. San Jose State went into its second bye week in less than a month after easily defeating San Diego State 31-10 on Saturday.
"It feels good to be winning. But like Coach Tomey says, we can't take our foot off the pedal," San Jose State wide receiver James Jones said.
"This team has high goals. We expected to be at this point. We have to keep working hard every day and elevate our game."
Despite having a week off earlier in the month, this was the first September since 1990 in which the Spartans won three games.
"It feels amazing, is the best way for me to put it. It's partially because of how we've done it, both on the ground and in the air," San Jose quarterback Adam Tafralis said. "We are really starting to come together and it feels good. We felt that it was our game at Washington, and that we left it there. It's not a surprise to be where we are today. We work hard to get everything that we get."
Cornerback Dwight Lowery, who has seven interceptions this season, admits he wasn't expecting this level of success in his first year in San Jose.
"Not exactly. I can't really say that this is how I planned it," Lowery said. "But it's all about preparation and mentally preparing and visualizing. Then you have a greater chance of doing that."
GAME BALL GOES TO: CB Dwight Lowery -- Lowery added two more interceptions to his collection against San Diego State and has seven on the season. He also recovered a fumble. For a player who wasn't expected to start, the junior-college transfer is averaging almost two interceptions per game.
"As I said, I've never been around a player that has his instincts as a defensive back or his ability to catch the ball. I don't think he has touched a ball that he has not caught," San Jose State coach Dick Tomey said. "We don't have any players that work harder on getting better. Not one iota does he take anything for granted. He just prepares.
"He has shown a lot of our guys what it's like to be competitive, to have high goals, to keep getting better, to keep trying to excel to an even higher level. I know he will keep doing that, because he's dead serious about being the best he can be and he's dead serious about helping this team win. Dwight's four games in. He has to do it for a season, for a career. But there's nobody that I've ever been around, that's off to a better start (to his career)."
KEEP AN EYE ON: WR Chester Coleman -- Once a deep threat that rarely saw more than a ball or two a game, Coleman had a career-high five catches for 47 yards against San Diego State. He also scored his first touchdown of the season.
QUOTE TO NOTE: "It didn't hurt the last time we had (a week off). I'm always grateful for a bye. It gives us a chance to take a look at everything we've done the first four games and analyze what we are doing too much of, and what we are not doing enough of. It gives us a chance to get some players well. Then we have eight straight games. It will be very welcomed. The players haven't had a Sunday off in two and a half months, but we will give them tomorrow off, and this will be the only one we will have off for two months. It's a fitting thing because of what they've done and where they have put themselves at this juncture, at 3-1. But like I told the players, we have bigger fish to fry. We're looking forward to throwing ourselves back into taking a look at who we are and what we've done and what we can do better, and getting ready for the next opponent." -- San Jose State coach Dick Tomey
LOOKING GOOD: Take your pick, from the dominant performance by the defense to the prolific passing attack. San Jose State looked like a legitimate bowl team and, considering Washington's success, that narrow season-opening road loss is appearing more and more credible.
QB Adam Tafralis -- For the third time in four games, the junior completed at least 80 percent of his passes (17-of-21), accounting for 234 yards and two touchdowns. He's leading the nation in completion percentage.
"We throw high-percentage balls, so the (percentage) is supposed to be high," Tafralis said. "We throw nice, short passes to guys that can make the plays. The running game also did its job."
WR John Broussard -- The senior had a career-best performance with five receptions for 167 yards and two touchdowns.
LB Matt Castelo -- One of just two returning defensive starters, Castelo finished with 14 tackles and appears a lock for 100 for the season.
STILL NEEDS WORK: RB Yonus Davis -- With the passing game clicking, Davis and the running attack evaporated. Davis finished with 27 yards on seven carries. He had a 21-yard reception. The running game overall averaged 3.8 yards per carry.
Defensive line -- Still no pressure to speak of, with no sacks and one tackle for loss.
ROSTER REPORT: DT Freddy McCutcheon desperately wanted to play against his former teammates, but the transfer from San Diego State still hasn't recovered from a dislocated knee suffered earlier this season in practice. San Jose State coach Dick Tomey awarded McCutcheon a game ball, however.
QB Myles Eden, a redshirt freshman, made his collegiate debut in the fourth quarter. His highlights included a 12-yard run and his first career completion.
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