Tyler Ervin’s Record-Breaking Day Leads San Jose State to Win


On Saturday night, the San Jose State Spartans were led by a record-breaking performance en route to a 49-23 win over the Fresno State Bulldogs. Fifth-year senior running back Tyler Ervin carried the ball 42 times for the Spartans, setting a career-high and falling just one short of the school record, and accumulated 300 yards on the ground, which broke the school record and marked the highest total in the FBS so far this year. He also scored three times.

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Before Ervin’s huge day, the school record for most rushing yards was held by Nathan Dupree, who ran for 286 yards against UNLV in 1992. Ervin ran past Dupree in the same way he ran past the Bulldogs’ defense.

Ervin more than doubled his previous best game by yardage, as the 146 yards he gained last year against the Colorado State Rams was his career-best before Saturday. He had totaled 22 carries twice previously, which was the highest mark of his career. This was Ervin’s second three touchdown game of the season, as he accomplished the feat against New Hampshire in the season’s opening week.

In the first quarter, Ervin scored twice, each time from two yards out, to give the Spartans an early 14-point lead. On the first possession of the second half, Ervin capped off a 70-yard drive that took under four minutes with a 30-yard scoring scamper, putting San Jose State ahead 28-10.

Ervin’s career-defining performance overshadowed another outstanding offensive game, as senior quarterback Joe Gray picked apart the Bulldogs’ defense throughout the night. Gray, who filled in for injured starter Kenny Potter while he was sidelined by an ankle sprain, was nearly perfect. He completed 20 of his 23 pass attempts, a tremendous 87 percent completion rate, for 252 yards and three touchdowns.

Ervin was the recipient of four of Gray’s completions, worth 45 yards, bringing his total to 345 yards of offense.

All told, the Spartans piled up 543 yards of total offense, accumulated 33 first downs, and converted seven of their 10 third-down attempts. Fresno State, in turn, could only come up with 247 yards against San Jose State’s defense.

In the third quarter, things got a little too close, as Fresno State put together a pair of scoring drives back to back, but a missed extra point left them trailing 28-23. San Jose State would score the final three touchdowns of the game to run away with the contest.

Saturday night ‘s victory put the San Jose State Spartans back at .500, with two wins and two losses through a quartet of games, as well as 1-1 in Mountain West play. They’ve won at least two of their first four contests for the first time with Ron Caragher as head coach, and for the first time overall since 2012, when they started 4-1 before eventually finishing 11-2 and ranked 21st in the nation.

Meanwhile, Fresno State’s loss drops them to 1-3 on the season, and 0-1 within the Mountain West Conference. They’ve started with one win in their first four games for the second straight season.

Within the rivalry, San Jose State has now won three of the last four matchups after picking up just two wins in the previous 20 years.

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