San Jose State Spartans football

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San Jose State Spartans football
2014 San Jose State Spartans football team
San Jose State Spartans Logo.svg
First season 1892
Head coach Ron Caragher
2nd year, 9–14 (.391)
Home stadium Spartan Stadium
Stadium capacity 30,456
Stadium surface Field turf
Location San Jose, California
Conference Mountain West
Division West
All-time record 471–468–37 (.502)
Postseason bowl record 6–3 (.667)
Conference titles 16
Heisman winners 0
Current uniform

Blue and Gold

Rivals Fresno State and Stanford
Website San Jose State Spartans

The San Jose State Spartans represent San Jose State University in NCAA Division I FBS college football. The Spartans play all home games in Spartan Stadium, which offers a seating capacity of over 30,000. The current head coach is Ron Caragher.

In Mike MacIntyre's third season as head coach, the 2012 San Jose State Spartans football team finished the season with a win over Bowling Green in the 2012 Military Bowl en route to an 11-2 season record and ranked 21st in the BCS rankings.

On July 1, 2013, SJSU left the Western Athletic Conference, the Spartans' conference home of 17 years, to begin competing in the Mountain West Conference.


The State Normal School at San Jose football team in 1910. Jerseys display a large "N" for "Normal."

SJSU first fielded a football team in 1893[1] and has won 16 conference championships dating back to 1932.

The first regular football seasons began in 1898 and mostly consisted of games against local high schools and some colleges and junior colleges. During the 1930s and 1940s, the Spartan football program was considered a powerhouse, winning eight conference championships over an 18-year span. The 1932 and 1939 teams went 7-0-2 and 13-0 respectively, the only undefeated seasons in school history.[1]

Spartan Stadium was completed in 1933 with a capacity of 18,000. The Spartans won the first football game played in the stadium, 44-6, over San Francisco State on October 7, 1933. Two stadium expansions and renovations in the 1980s increased the seating capacity from 18,000 to 30,456.

The San Jose State Spartans football team served unexpectedly with the Honolulu Police Department during World War II. The team had just arrived in Honolulu to play a series of post-season games (including the Shrine Bowl) against the University of Hawai'i Rainbow Warriors and the Willamette University Bearcats, but the team was stranded on the islands for a number of weeks after the Pearl Harbor attack. The team members were then employed to improve island defenses against a possible Japanese amphibious assault and as guards for military bases on the island.[2]

The San Jose Mercury News reported in March 2004 that budget cuts led some faculty members at San Jose State to advocate removing the SJSU football program from Division IA athletics.[3]

In 2004, San Jose State defeated the Rice Owls 70-63 in a game that set the NCAA Division I record for total points scored and total touchdowns for a non-overtime game.[4]

SJSU has produced over 70 All-America team members, including five first-team selections.[2]

The Tomey era (2005–2009)[edit]

James Jones catches a touchdown pass against Stanford in 2006 at Spartan Stadium.

Coach Dick Tomey took over the program in 2005. Because San Jose State failed to meet Academic Progress Rate standards, the NCAA took away three scholarships from San Jose State football's 2007 freshman class in April 2006.[5] After showing moderate improvement that year, the Spartans had a breakout season in 2006. In fact, it was the team's best season since joining the WAC ten years prior. Tomey guided the Spartans to a 9-4 record, a win over rival Fresno State, and a win in the 2006 New Mexico Bowl, thus ending the team's 16-year bowl drought. The 2006 Spartan squad produced two 2007 NFL draft picks in wide receivers James Jones and John Broussard.

The 2007 San Jose State Spartans football team was not as successful as the previous year's team, with the Spartans going 5-7 and finishing 5th in the WAC. The post-season showed a positive result, however, with several players being named to all-star games including Dwight Lowery, Marcus Teland, Matt Castelo, and Adam Tafralis. The Spartans produced another draft pick in the 2008 NFL Draft, in defensive back Dwight Lowery. Lowery was named a 1st-team All-America winner in 2007.

The 2008 San Jose State Spartans football team gave the school its best start since joining the WAC. The Spartans jumped to 3-0 and led the WAC for 3 weeks until losing to Boise State. The Spartans finished the season in 6th place in the WAC with a conference record of 4-4, and a 6-6 overall record. Three players were picked in the 2009 NFL Draft, those being defensive tackle Jarron Gilbert, defensive back Christopher Owens, and defensive back Coye Francies

After playing an unusually tough non-conference schedule, the 2009 San Jose State Spartans finished 2-10 with wins over Cal Poly and New Mexico State. Head Coach Dick Tomey announced in November he would retire at the close of the season, thus ending his legendary coaching career. Tomey's record at SJSU was 25-35.

The MacIntyre era (2010–2012)[edit]

On December 17, 2009, Mike MacIntyre was formally introduced as Tomey's replacement. MacIntyre was previously the defensive coordinator at Duke University.[6]

San Jose State went 1-12 in 2010 and 5-7 in 2011 under MacIntyre. However in 2012, MacIntyre's third season as head coach, the 2012 San Jose State Spartans football team finished the season with a win over Bowling Green in the 2012 Military Bowl en route to an 11-2 season record and ranked 24th in the BCS rankings. Kent Baer served as interim head coach for the Military Bowl because MacIntyre resigned to accept the head coach position at the University of Colorado.

The Caragher era (2013–present)[edit]

Ron Caragher, previously the head coach at the University of San Diego, became head coach for the 2013 season. The Spartans finished their first season under Caragher with a 6-6 record.


San Jose State shares rivalries with Fresno State, Stanford, San Diego State and Hawaii.

Fresno State[edit]

The Fresno State-San José State game is often referred to as the Valley Rivalry and is arguably SJSU's biggest football rivalry. As of 2013, Fresno State leads the series 38–37–3.


Stanford and San Jose State first played each other in San Jose in 1900.[7] In 2007, following the death of San Jose State alum and former Stanford coach Bill Walsh, the near-annual game played between the two schools was renamed the Bill Walsh Legacy Game.[8]

The games from 1979 to 1982 pitted Stanford quarterback John Elway against his father, Jack Elway, who served as the SJSU head football coach from 1979 to 1983. San Jose State won three consecutive games over the Cardinal from 1981 to 1983 and again from 1998 to 2000.[9]

As of 2012, Stanford led the series 51–14–1, with 62 of the 66 games between the schools taking place at Stanford.[7] The 2013 game, a 34-13 win for Stanford, is the final scheduled game between the two schools, reportedly due to the schools being unable to agree on a home-and-home setup for future games.[10][11][12]

San Diego State[edit]

The rivalry between San Jose State and San Diego State, also known as the El Camino Real Rivalry, dates back to 1935.[13] As of 2012, the Spartans lead the series 19-15-2.[14]

The two teams competed annually from 1969 to 1975, when both were in the PCAA conference, then again from 1995 to 1998 and 2012 to the present.[15][16] San Jose State was in its final Big West Conference season in 1995, then reunited with San Diego State in the WAC in 1996. San Diego State moved to the MWC in 1999, while San Jose State stayed in the WAC until 2012.[17][18] However, San Jose State played San Diego State four times after San Diego State moved to the MWC and won three of the four matches. For its first victory over San Diego State since 1975, San Jose State beat San Diego State 31-10 in 2006.[15] San Jose State would win 35-10 in 2008 at home and 38-34 in 2012 on the road.[15] In 2013, the schools renited in the same conference for the first time in 15 years, as San Jose State joined the MWC.[18][17] In San Jose, San Diego State won the first game between the two schools as MWC members, 34-30.[15]

Records against rivals[edit]

Team Games Played SJSU Win SJSU Loss Ties Win % First Meeting Last Meeting Next scheduled Meeting
Fresno State 77 37 38 3 .474 1921 W 62-52 (2013) November 8, 2014 in Fresno
Stanford 67 14 52 1 .216 1900 L 13-34 (2013) --
San Diego State 37 19 16 2 .541 1935 L 34-30 (2013) November 29, 2014 in San Diego


As of 2010, 110 SJSU Spartans have gone on to play in the NFL,[19] and seven former Spartans are actively playing in the NFL.[2][20] The 110 players include six NFL Pro Bowl selections, six first-round draft picks, two MVP award winners, and one NFL Rookie of the Year.[19][20]

SJSU, Dayton and Arkansas are the only schools to produce two alumni who coached Super Bowl-winning teams.[2]

Conference championships[edit]

San Jose State vs. Utah at Spartan Stadium - 2009

From 1969 to 1995, SJSU earned more Big West Conference football championship titles than any other team in the history of the Big West conference.[2] 1995 was SJSU's final season in the Big West, as the Spartans moved to the WAC in 1996.

  • 1932 - Northern California Athletic Conference Co-Champions
  • 1934 - Northern California Athletic Conference Co-Champions
  • 1939 - California Collegiate Athletic Association Champions
  • 1940 - California Collegiate Athletic Association Champions
  • 1941 - California Collegiate Athletic Association Co-Champions
  • 1946 - California Collegiate Athletic Association Champions
  • 1948 - California Collegiate Athletic Association Champions
  • 1949 - California Collegiate Athletic Association Champions
  • 1975 - Pacific Coast Athletic Association Champions
  • 1976 - Pacific Coast Athletic Association Champions
  • 1978 - Pacific Coast Athletic Association Co-Champions
  • 1981 - Big West Conference Champions
  • 1986 - Big West Conference Champions
  • 1987 - Big West Conference Champions
  • 1990 - Big West Conference Champions
  • 1991 - Big West Conference Co-Champions

No Team: 1894, 1896–1897, 1901–1920, 1943–1945

Chronology of head coaches[edit]

  • 1893–1898 James E. Addicott
  • 1899 Jess Woods (.643)
  • 1900 James E. Addicott (.536) (312 seasons)
  • 1900 Fielding H. Yost (1.000) (coached one game)
  • 1921–1922 David Wooster (.250)
  • 1923 H.C. McDonald (.000)
  • 1924–1928 E.R. Knollin (.378)
  • 1929–1931 Walter Crawford (.348)
  • 1932–1939 Dudley DeGroot (.736)
  • 1940–1941 Ben Winkleman (.761)
  • 1942–1946 Glenn Hartranft (.778)
  • 1946–1949 Bill Hubbard (.761)
  • 1950–1956 Robert T. Bronzan (.515)
  • 1957–1964 Bob Titchenal (.424)
  • 1965–1968 Harry Anderson (.333)
  • 1969–1970 Joe McMullen (.231)

Bowl games[edit]

SJSU home football game at Spartan Stadium

The SJSU football team has made nine bowl appearances. Its most recent bowl appearance occurred in 2012 when the Spartans defeated Bowling Green in the Military Bowl.[2]

Year Played Bowl Opponent Result
2012 Military Bowling Green Win, 29–20
2006 New Mexico New Mexico Win, 20–12
1990 California Raisin Central Michigan Win, 48–24
1987 California Eastern Michigan Loss, 27–30
1986 California Miami (OH) Win, 37–7
1981 California Toledo Loss, 25–27
1971 Pasadena Memphis Loss, 9–28
1949 Raisin Texas Tech Win, 20–13
1947 Raisin Utah State Win, 20–0

Notable players and alumni[edit]

SJSU Alumnus Bill Walsh and former Spartans Head Football Coach Dick Tomey

Future non-conference opponents[edit]

2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
vs New Hampshire at Tulsa vs Colorado at Washington State vs Tulsa vs Oregon State at Army
at Oregon State vs Utah at Utah at Colorado at Army vs Army
at Auburn at Iowa State vs Iowa State vs Army
vs BYU at BYU



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  2. ^ a b c d e f "SJSU Spartans Media Guide". 2009. Retrieved May 4, 2010. 
  3. ^ Bartindale, Becky (March 29, 2004). "SJSU football targeted". San Jose Mercury News. Archived from the original on December 5, 2004. 
  4. ^ "Teams set D-I regulation scoring record". Associated Press. October 2, 2004. Retrieved October 27, 2011. 
  5. ^ Curtis, Jake (April 14, 2006). "San Jose State loses 3 scholarships". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved April 5, 2014. 
  6. ^
  7. ^ a b Stanford 2013 Football Media Guide, p. 156.
  8. ^ Smith, Michelle (September 12, 2007). "Walsh's legacy all over this game". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved June 1, 2014. 
  9. ^ "San Jose State versus Stanford". Retrieved June 1, 2014. 
  10. ^ Durkin, Jimmy (September 4, 2013). "Stanford, San Jose State football series coming to an end". San Jose Mercury News. Retrieved June 1, 2014. 
  11. ^ Kroichick, Ron (September 5, 2013). "Shaw fires back on imminent end of Stanford-San Jose State series". Stanford Sports. Retrieved June 1, 2014. 
  12. ^ Wilner, Jon (September 12, 2013). "Stanford and San Jose State: The end of the Bill Walsh Legacy Game series (at least for now)". College Hotline. Retrieved June 1, 2014. 
  13. ^ "San Jose State Spartans Football Tickets". TicketCity. Retrieved June 1, 2014. 
  14. ^ 2013 San Jose State University Football, p. 181.
  15. ^ a b c d "Rivalry Finder: San Jose State versus San Diego State". Retrieved June 1, 2014. 
  16. ^ Kelley, Kevin (November 29, 2012). "San Diego State adds future games vs. California, NMSU and San Jose State". Retrieved June 1, 2014. 
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  18. ^ a b "San Jose State Spartans". Retrieved June 1, 2014. 
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  20. ^ a b "College Football Encyclopedias". 2010. Retrieved January 15, 2010. 
  21. ^ a b c "Pro Football Reference". pro-football-reference. 2009. Retrieved February 18, 2010. 
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  31. ^ "FRANK MININI". Retrieved September 21, 2014. 
  32. ^ "Pro Football Reference". Pro Football Reference. 2010. Retrieved February 19, 2010. 
  33. ^ The winners of the Most Courageous Award for 1997, 1999, 2003, 2005, 2006, and 2007 are listed in the cited article with the incorrect year, i.e., the year that follows the award year. (The awards dinner and presentation occur in January or February of the year following the award year.) More 'Most Courageous' memories from PSWA dinners. PSWA Dinner website. January 17, 2009. Retrieved 2011-01-04.
  34. ^ "Arena Fan". 2010. Retrieved February 19, 2010. 
  35. ^ "NFL Players". NFL Enterprises, Inc. 2010. Retrieved February 18, 2010. 
  36. ^ "NFL Players". NFL Enterprises, Inc. 2010. Retrieved February 19, 2010. 
  37. ^ "Al Saunders". Serving History. 2010. Retrieved August 12, 2010. 
  38. ^ "CFL Players". Canadian Football League. 2010. Retrieved February 18, 2010. 
  39. ^ a b "Distinguished Alumni". SJSU. 2009. Retrieved Feb 8, 2010. 
  40. ^ "Dick Vermeil, Head Coach", Kansas City Chiefs
  41. ^ Bill Walsh Of The 49ers Is Named SJSU's 2001 Tower Award Winner, 2001, CSU Newsline
  42. ^ "San Diego State Future Non-Conference Schedule". 

External links[edit]