SJSU Opens Men's Hoops Season with Win

The San Jose State men's basketball team tipped off their 2009-2010 campaign with an 89-63 win over William Jessup. Freshman Chris Jones was impressive with Justin Graham leading the Spartan scoring attack.

Let's get the final score out there so something more substantive can be offered: San Jose State defeated William Jessup 89-63 Monday night at Walt McPherson Court.

Now on to the meat and potatoes, or the veggie burger and marinated tofu salad if that's how you roll.

The essence of last night -- beyond no injuries -- can be distilled down to this: the unveiling of freshman guard Chris Jones. His line: 13 points, 5-7 overall shooting, 1-2 from three-point range and 2-2 from the foul line, five rebounds, two assists and zero fouls. The latter is listed because Jones played the most serious of defense in his 25 minutes of play.

On top of his various numbers, Jones also displayed a solid handle with his dribble-drives and actually led a couple of one-man fastbreaks after receiving outlet passes that resulted in his canning a pair of layups. He is strong, quick and -- yes, we're going to type this -- he is going to receive a spot on the All-WAC Defensive Team in 2009-2010.

Okay, we'll take a breath.

So what else?

In 27 minutes, a finally healthy Justin Graham ended up leading the squad in scoring with 18 points -- 6-8 shooting overall, 1-2 on his trey attempts and 5-5 from the foul line. His right wrist looks back to normal.

The Spartan 'bigs' played big, as expected, dominating inside.

SJSU led 46-31 at the half. A five or so minute funk period -- no scoring combined with ballhandling errors -- allowed William Jessup to close the scoring gap.

Too many unforced, sloppy passes were apparent as San Jose State finished the night with 21 turnovers -- 17 by the backcourters -- and 12 of those in the initial 20 minutes.

On Friday, it's the Spartans taking on Lorenzo Romar's Huskies in Seattle. Washington has beaten Wright St. 74-69, Belmont 96-78 and splattered Portland State 111-55. UW isn't overpowering but does have a bigtime collection of athletes, including 5-foot-8 Isaiah Thomas, who many are predicting will be the PAC-10 Player of the Year.

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Kevin McCarthy is the Basketball Editor for Inside Sparta. You may contact Kevin with any questions, comments, or tips at

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