SEASON OPENER - SAN JOSE STATE AT ARKANSAS STATE!

Check out what will happen when SJSU has the ball, and when Arkansas State has the ball! We predict a Spartan win for the home opener!

Pack your bags, and book that flight to the fancy state of Arkansas!

If SJSU's QB can get to his speedy recievers, look for SJSU to win this game by 10 points.

If SJSU's QB cannot reach his recievers, and if the SJSU defense has not improved, look for the Indians to earn their first victory of the season over a team from the high powered WAC.

So, this saturday the Spartans kick off the 2002 season in Little Rock against the Arkansas State Indians.

This will be the Indians' (0-1) second game, and were blown out big time against Virginia Tech 63-7, last Sunday in the Hispanic College Fund Football Classic.

VT smoked out the indians 56-0 at half time, and starting Indian QB Tommy Miller was injured, and is out of the game for the meeting with your Spartans this saturday.

Elliot Jacobs, who completed nine of 16 passes for 177 yards and a touchdown, replaced Miller in the fourth quarter vs VT. Jacobs will get the nod on Saturday.

ASU head coach Steve Roberts and San Jose State coach Fitz Hill were teammates at Ouachita Baptist, and when Roberts was named head coach at ASU, these two old pals decieded to get together for "old times sake" and "bragging rights".

The Indians should not be considered the favorite saturday, as the ASU offensive line has been ailing since spring (Check out their web site for this info). The VT game proved that they could not block for their running backs, so look for SJSU to exploit this fact saturday.

ASU managed only 24 yards on 33 carries, less than 1 yard per carry. The lone bright spot for the Indians was junior WR Mike Cox who had 5 catches for 120 yards, including a 73 yard TD reception and run.

The Spartans will be Led by junior QB, Scott Rislov, and the team is expected to show an improved offense, featuring a running attack behind a huge offensive line led by All WAC senior tackle Tim Provost (6-6, 295). Senior Brandon Miles (6-0, 244) will provide the inside running and transfer Oscar Rigg (5-10, 215) will provide the outside speed.

Rislov will go to his speedy recievers, senior Charles Pauley, and juniors, Tuati Wooden, and Kendrick Starling is a legitimate big play maker.

The Spartan defense has been re-vamped.

Freshman DT Kenji Green (6-2, 278) and transfer DE Philip Perry (6-1, 242) join seniors DE Chip Kimmich (6-4, 2570) and DT Mike Beams (6-2, 291) on the new Spartan line.

The linebackers are veterans and should be a strength this season as a number of strong JUCO walk-ons have joined the team this year.

The secondary will be solid, led by junior CB Melvin Cook and transfer FS Gerald Jones.

When SJSU has the ball:

Look for SJSU to establish the running game using Miles and Rigg. Look for Rislov to go deep to his recievers, as this kid has one hell of an arm.

When ASU has the ball:

Despite the shellacking against Va Tech, ASU will try to run the ball against the Spartan defensive line. ASU will be surprised when SJSU stops them again, and again, and again.

They will be forced to air it out against the SJSU defense.

Thunder Prediction:

SJSU 31 and ARK STATE 14

The Indians head coach is Steve Roberts (1st Year).

Last year at Northwestern (La.) Steve Roberts was 8-4.

This game is being played at War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock, Arkansas. The stadium is located at W. Markham and Van Buren, north of Hwy I-630 in Little Rock.

The stadiums capacity is 53,727 and had natural grass installed in 1995. ("AstroPlay" was just installed this summer, replacing the natural grass)-FYI.

A good hotel to stay at would be the "Peabody". The address is 3 Statehouse plaza, or call 1-800-peabody for reservations.

Also try the "Capital" at 111 W markham or call 800-766-7666 for reservations. The "doubletree" is always a safe bet when following the Spartans on the road. It is at 424 W Markham or call 800-222-8733 for reservations.

Pre game grub is being held by the "George Frederick Tailgate BBQ" at the stadium, prior to kick-off.

Check it out!

Ticket information for the ASU game:

The San Jose State ticket office can be reached at (408)-924-SJTX (7589) or (877)-SJSU-TIX (8849).

Radio and TV:

The three station Spartan Radio Network includes KLIV 1590 AM, KTX 1460 AM and KFIV 1360 AM.

Mike Chisholm and John Ralson make up the television broadcast team. Broadcasts begin 30 minutes before kickoff and conclude following the post-game show featuring coach Fitz Hill.

Ticket information at Arkansas State:

You can contact the Arkansas State ticket office at (501) 972-ASU1.

Radio and TV in Arkansas:

RADIO: KOZY-FM 105.3 in Jonesboro serves as the flaghsip station for all Indians' football games.

For the sixth straight year, Bill Keedy will handle play-by-play duties and provide color analysis.


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