It’s finally game week for the Beavers football program once again, as #18 Oregon State returns to the gridiron to kick off their 2023 campaign in sunny California against San Jose State. Head coach Jonathan Smith might just have his best crew ever in year six and with Oregon State recently naming Clemson transfer DJ Uiagalelei as their starting quarterback, all systems are go for the potential Pac-12 contenders. But enough about Oregon State, let’s learn about their Week One opponents in the Mountain West Conference’s San Jose State Spartans.
The Season So Far
San Jose State (0-1, 0-0) | Last Game: 56-28 Loss at USC
San Jose State may enter the official “Week One” with one defeat on their resume, but we learned a whole heck about the Spartans in their season debut at USC.
First of all, quarterback Chevan Cordeiro is not regressing one bit, as he tallied almost 200 yards and three scores through the air against the Trojans and he did that without wide receiver Justin Lockhart to help the cause. Putting up 28 points against USC - albeit with a very questionable and highly scrutinized defense - was nothing that should be overlooked. Clearly, Brent Brennan’s offensive mindset is getting through to his Spartans program.
And then there was defense. Allowing 56 points is always a massive cause for concern, but a reigning Heisman Trophy winner in Caleb Williams will sometimes make your defense really look worse than it is. Williams posted another Heisman potential stat-line, tossing for 278 yards and 4 scores, while completing 18 of his 25 pass attempts and USC added a special teams touchdown to put salt in the wound. The Spartans showed flashes of brilliance, but they’ll need to clean up some parts of the game back at home against the Beavers.
- Pac-12 Love: The Beavers will be Pac-12 test number two for the Spartans in the 2023 season, after they traveled to meet up with USC in Week Zero. San Jose State opted to skip Pac-12 foes in 2022, but also danced with the Trojans in 2021 and last played Oregon State in 2015, where the Beavers edged them 35-21. In case you missed it, the Trojans weren’t too kind to the Spartans, throttling them 56-28.
- An Old Friend: Spartans head coach Brent Brennan spent from 2011-2016 in Corvallis coaching up the team’s wide receivers and was one of the most well-respected names on the staff during his stay with the Beavers. It’s no surprise that Brennan was in consideration for the role eventually handed to head coach Jonathan Smith and also, that he now has San Jose State sitting among the toughest regular contenders in the Mountain West.
- Cautious Optimism: San Jose State was picked fifth in the conference’s preseason poll and was the first team on the list not to receive at least one first-place vote, behind Boise State, Air Force, Fresno State and San Diego State, respectively. However, quarterback Chevan Cordeiro, who the Beavers saw two seasons ago against them in a Hawai’i uniform, was voted Mountain West Offensive Player of the Year and wide receiver Justin Lockhart joined him on the conference’s first-team selections.
- Date: Sunday, September 3rd
- Time: 12:30 PM PT
- Location: CEFCU Stadium (San Jose, California)
- Coverage: CBS