Portland State vs. San Jose State: Game Preview, How To Watch, Odds, Prediction
The Spartans will open 2022 at home against the Big Sky’s Vikings. Here’s how to tune in and what to watch for.
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SJSU looks to come out strong.
WEEK 1: Portland State Vikings vs. San Jose State Spartans
WHEN: Thursday, September 1 — 7:30 PM PT/8:30 PM MT
WHERE: CEFCU Stadium; San Jose, CA
WEATHER: Sunny, high of 90 degrees
TV: NBC Sports Bay Area
STREAMING: Mountain West Network
The Mountain West Network should also be available for streaming on a handful of smart TV platforms, as well as through the mobile app available on Apple and Android. You can learn more about how to access all of those at this link.
RADIO: The San Jose State broadcast can be found in the South Bay on 860 AM The Answer (KTRB).
SERIES RECORD: San Jose State leads the all-time series, 1-0. In the lone previous meeting on September 10, 2016, the Spartans defeated the Vikings, 66-35, in San Jose.
WEBSITES: GoViks.com, the official Portland State athletics website | SJSUSpartans.com, the official San Jose State athletics website
GAME NOTES (PDF): Portland State | San Jose State
ODDS: no line
SP+ PROJECTION: San Jose State by 17.3
FEI PROJECTION: N/A
PARKER FLEMING PROJECTION: N/A
🎥| @CoachBrennan previews week 1⃣ against Portland State Thursday night‼️
🏟 CEFCU Stadium
⏰ Thursday, 7:30 p.m.
📻 KTRB 860 AM (https://t.co/jisis0jsGT)#AllSpartans pic.twitter.com/FMpldgEZaZ
— San José State Football (@SanJoseStateFB) August 29, 2022
After a disappointing 2021 season, the San Jose State Spartans are ready to prove their championship run the previous year was no fluke and that journey will begin at home against the Portland State Vikings.
Bruce Barnum’s Viks might not be the favorites in a very top-heavy Big Sky Conference, but they have talent on both sides of the ball that could keep the game much closer than expected should the Spartans get off to a slow start. Here’s how San Jose State can keep that from happening and come away with a Week 1 win.
Three Keys to a San Jose State Victory
1. Get Chevan Cordeiro into an early groove.
The Spartans invested heavily in revamping a passing game that fell off last season, so it stands to reason that Cordeiro will be a focal point of the new-look offense and shoulder a big workload. One potential problem with that? The new San Jose State quarterback has never been particularly sharp early in games.
In his career, Cordeiro has 179 first-quarter pass attempts, but he’s only managed a completion rate of 58.1%, 6.7 yards per attempt, and has nine touchdowns and five interceptions. Greater efficiency at the onset, like the kind the Spartans got from Nick Starkel back in 2020, could go a long way toward helping the home team keep the upset-minded Viks at arm’s length.
2. Find a strong performance within the defensive line.
Another thing that regressed some from the Spartans’ championship run was their ability to get to the quarterback. Despite the presence of both Viliami Fehoko and Cade Hall, San Jose State’s overall sack rate fell from 8.2% to 6.3%, fine but not great. If they can be great again, it’ll start against a Portland State offensive line that allowed 22 sacks in 2021 and will now feature two new starters, Sebastian Sias and Richard Estrella, at both tackle positions. Should the two all-conference defenders play as well as we know they can, the Spartans could put the Viks away emphatically.
San Jose State Football: First Look At The Portland State Vikings
3. Take care of the football.
Perhaps this is an obvious point of emphasis, but only Hawaii had more than San Jose State’s 24 giveaways last year among Mountain West offenses. They only had one game in 2021 with zero turnovers, compared to nine with two or more, which was another far cry from their championship season: Until their personnel was depleted in the Arizona Bowl that year, they had five turnovers in seven games.
The Spartans tumbled down the standings last year, but they have done just about as much as they can to re-establish themselves as potential contenders this off-season. Beating a Portland State that figures to be solid, if not spectacular, like they should will be the first strike that puts the rest of the conference back on notice.
San Jose State 35, Portland State 21