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Wednesday, Oct. 4, 2017


Fresno State’s Award-Winning Newspaper

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Alumna killed in massacre

Gina Ferazzi • Los Angeles Times/TNS

(Left) Concertgoer Katy Bors, right, of Las Vegas, gets emotional as she visits a memorial with her sister, Shawn Christian, near the scene of the mass shooting, two days after a lone gunman opened fire onto the festival from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel, killing 59 and wounding 527 people, on Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2017, in Las Vegas. (Right) Fresno State alumna Kelsey Meadows who was killed at the Las Vegas mass shooting on Oct. 1, 2017. Courtesy of University Communications.

By Jessica Johnson @iamjesslj


resno State alumna Kelsey Meadows was killed in Las Vegas’ mass shooting on Sunday, which is the largest and deadliest

mass shooting in U.S. history. According to the Associated Press, 64-year-old Stephen Paddock killed 59 people at a concert during the Route 91 Harvest Festival near Mandalay Bay hotel and casino. The number of wounded victims rose to 527. Meadows, 28, earned her bachelor’s de-


gree in history in 2011. In 2013, she earned her social science single subject teaching credential, according to Fresno State. Fresno State President Joseph I. Castro announced that Meadows’ memory will be honored with a flag tribute on the day of her funeral services. That date has not yet been announced.

“We are saddened by this tragic loss of such a promising young life,” Castro said. “I extend my deepest condolences to Kelsey’s family, friends and colleagues as well as the faculty and staff she knew here at the University.”

See SHOOTING, Page 3

You can build a stage for Victor E. By Jessica Johnson @iamjesslj

Daniel Avalos • The Collegian

Victor E. Bulldog III poses for a photo with a woman on Feb. 14, 2017. Victor E. attended the quad grand opening event on Fresno State’s campus.

Victor E. Bulldog III will be getting his very own student-made stage – a first for a live mascot at Fresno State. Since his debut at the university, Victor E. has made more than 600 appearances, said Matt Schulz, director of engagement at Fresno State’s Alumni Association. He said the association noticed it was hard for some people to pose with Victor E. because he is too low on the ground. That is when the association decided to launch the “Victor E. Bulldog III Design

Challenge.” “The stage is a way to raise him up, helping make sure he is more accessible,” Schulz said. Students at the Lyles College of Engineering are being tasked with creating the stages through a contest. But all students are welcome to participate individually or in teams. The contest will begin on Oct. 10. Students can meet Victor E. from 11 a.m. to noon in the Engineering East Building foyer to take measurements and begin the

See CONTEST, Page 3





What our country needs is a leader, not whatever Trump is

By Amber Carpenter | @shutupambs

Between the hurricanes, the Las Vegas mass shooting and continued tension with North Korea, President Donald Trump has shown his true colors as a leader, and none of them are commendable. It was an already known fact that Trump is a self-centered man who surrounds himself with ‘yes’ men as a means not to diminish his outrageous self-confidence and consistently remind him that he is doing a “good job.” And if the ‘yes’ men he has acquired have failed to meet the standards of the job, he simply dismisses them and engages with another crop of people who will lie and tell him he is doing an excellent job as the leader of our country. For one, Trump is doing a lackluster job when it comes to being president. For another, all he has done in his time as president is prove himself reactive, thoughtless and not at all productive. Trump is statistically proven to be the least popular president in recent American history, with his presidential approval rating setting an all-time low of 34 percent – far lower than predecessor Barack Obama’s rating ever was. However, even if you showed him the numbers, he might label them as “fake news,” tweet a rampage against his adversaries and move along to the next non-issue plaguing his reputation. Trump embodies every single aspect of a bully mentality, and has done so since day

Douliery • Abaca Press/TNS

one of his campaign. He is not above visibly favoring those who speak highly of him, just like he is not at all above publicly shaming anyone who dares to disagree with him. When it came to NFL players choosing to kneel instead of stand during the National Anthem as a means to bring awareness to racial inequities occuring daily in society, Trump went on a days-long Twitter tirade that seems to continue by the day. “The booing at the NFL football game last night, when the entire Dallas team dropped to its knees, was loudest I have ever heard. Great anger,” he tweeted on Sept. 26. This is how Trump operates. He uses his Twitter account as a sounding board for all of his faithful supporters and it is through his tweets that he rallies all of the yes men he needs in order fulfill his ego. Trump tweeted more on the day NFL players knelt for the National Anthem than he did on the day of the largest and deadliest mass-shooting in American history in Las

Vegas on Sunday night, leaving more than 50 people dead and more than 500 people wounded. And when he did tweet, it was lukewarm and generic. We should not be part of a society that anxiously awaits for what terrible thing our president is going to say on a public forum. As a country, we deserve a leader who meets tragedy with calls to action and with an open mind for solutions from all, not just the people in his corner with only his best interests at heart. But there was no call to action because Trump is not a man of action. Even when Trump shows up, he does nothing to actively better the situation. He smiles and lends a hand for photo-ops, but does nothing to rectify situations or issues that are negatively affecting large parts of American society. When visiting Puerto Rico on Tuesday, Trump continuously found ways to make

the tragedy about his excellence as a leader and going so far as to compare the tragedy with Hurricane Katrina in terms of the death toll and half-joke about how relief efforts to re-establish Puerto Rico are negatively affecting the American budget. That is not a leader. A leader is not someone who shows up for the photo-op and offers half-hearted apologies with no means to actually fix the situation for the people it is affecting. A leader is someone like San Juan, Puerto Rico Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz, whose photo-op was captured while waist deep in hurricane-induced flooding, searching for survivors of Hurricane Maria. A leader is not someone who uses tragedy as a means to parade around his lack of accomplishments and then wait for people to tell him how well they are doing. Leaders take action. Leaders make things happen. Leaders listen to all sides as a means to find common ground and formulate a solution. Instead, we have a leader who does not care about anything but his public persona and the people on his team that keep it intact. America deserves a leader that will do more than offer meaningless words, belittle those who disagree with him or poke at the sleeping bear that is nuclear war. It is discouraging to think of what a solution might be to our president’s antics, but without a real leader, our country is finding ways to step up and make differences in our own communities daily. Though it seems impossible, do not give into the hopelessness that our country might feel like right now. Communities are making a difference. People are making a difference. Don’t resort to the type of leadership that Trump is displaying and has displayed throughout the course of his presidency. We as a society are capable of and deserve so much better.

Jordan Bradley • The Collegian

THE COLLEGIAN The Collegian is a student-run publication that serves the Fresno State community. Views expressed in The Collegian do not necessarily reflect the views of the staff or university.

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Winning design for bulldog stage gets cash CONTEST from Page 1 design process for his stage. On Nov. 15, students will submit a threepage design narrative. Five students or teams will be selected as finalists on Dec. 1. The designs will be presented to a panel of judges on Dec. 8 from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Smittcamp Alumni House in the Whitten Room.

A $1,000 cash prize will be awarded to the winning design during finals week, Dec. 11 to 14. Schulz said the funding of the prize will come from the Victor E. Bulldog program, managed by the association. The program is funded by business sponsors and private donations. From January to April, the students will bring their designs to life by working with

Dr. The Nguyen, assistant professor of mechanical engineering in the Lyles College. “Students with winning concepts will work directly with me and sponsoring companies to build the product,” Nguyen said. “Materials and supplies will be provided.” Some of the requirements of the design, according to the submission page, include: a 30-inch height requirement, easy mobility, durability when supporting 80 pounds

of pressure, safety for Victor E. and his audience and an area on the stage for sponsor recognition. Victor E. will show off his newly built stage at Fresno State’s Vintage Days from April 20 to 22. On May 8, the stage will be showcased with Victor E. at the college’s 11th annual Projects Day.

Marcus Yam • Los Angeles Times/TNS

UNLV students gather for a candlelight vigil for the victims of the mass shootings that killed 59 people and injured more than 525 on Oct. 2, 2017 in Las Vegas.

Faculty remembers ‘friendly’ student killed SHOOTING from Page 1 In a news release sent to the university Tuesday, history professor Lori Clune, said she remembers Meadows as “a gifted teacher who demonstrated a skill and passion for her chosen profession.” Clune said Meadows, who was a substitute teacher at Taft High School, demonstrated skill and passion for teaching. “Although Kelsey was in a large class of 40 students, I distinctly remember her. She contributed thoughtfully to class discussions; wrote terrific, penetrating papers and earned a well-deserved A,” Clune said. Dr. Michelle Denbeste, dean of the College of Social Sciences at Fresno State who was chair of the history department when Meadows was a student, said the College of Social Sciences is devastated about the loss and that Meadows will be remembered as a friendly and cheerful good student. “We care deeply for the success and well-being of our students, and we are heartbroken to learn one of our own was a victim of this tragedy,” Denbeste said. “We will extend our deepest condolences to her family and friends.” As families mourn their loved ones who

died and friends and communities seek to help, the Better Business Bureau is offering tips for those who want to donate to charities to help victims with tragedy-related needs. The BBB Wise Giving Alliance warns of scammers taking advantage of donors in moments of vulnerability. Donors are encouraged to donate thoughtfully and avoid those who seek to take advantage of trusting donors. The bureau offered 11 tips for safe and trusted giving:

1. Take your time to check out the char-

ity and avoid wasting your time donating to a “questionable” or “poorly managed effort.” Visit to verify if a charity meets the BBB Standards for Charitable Accountability.

2. Crowdfunding can often be difficult

to verify its trustworthiness. For tips on crowdfunding, visit

3. If you decide to create a fundraising campaign for a family, person or organization, make sure to get permission to use their photos.

4. Nearly all states require charities to

register with a state government agency, often a division of the State Attorney General’s office. If the charity you are looking to donate to is not registered, the BBB says it can be a red flag.

5. Be sure to know where the donations

are going. Ask yourself: Where are the donations going? How will it help the victims’ families?

6. Know the difference between assistance funds and a charity. Charities will often use a bank to transfer the donations to a certified public accountant (CPA), or lawyer, to disburse for tragedy-related needs. 7. Tragedies that involved violent acts with guns may generate donation requests from advocacy groups. The BBB says you can donate to the groups, but the orginization asks donors to note if they are tax exempt. They also warn of newly created advocacy groups because it may be hard to verify their legitimacy. 8.

Never click on links to charities

in unfamiliar websites, text messages or email. The link may take you to a lookalike website where it asks you to provide personal information. The BBB says do not assume charity recommendations on social media have already been confirmed as safe.

9. After funds are raised for a tragedy, the BBB says it is important for an organization to provide accounting of how funds were spent. Transparent organizations will post information to their websites so anyone can find it. 10. The BBB says it is up to donors if they want to give to a newly created or established organization. The established organization often is well-managed and has a track record that can be evaluated. 11. Not all organizations that collect donations are tax exempt as charities under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. The BBB says donors can support these organizations. But should keep their exemption status in mind. Campaigns that only allow donors to help a specific individual or family are not deductible as charitable donations.





New Syfy series ‘Ghost Wars’ is not for the faint of heart

Vincent D’Onofrio and Avan Jogia in the first episode of “Ghost Wars,” which premieres Thursday at 10 p.m. on Syfy.

By Brandon Rowe @TheCollegian

What do ghosts and a rock ‘n’ roller have in common? Those who tune in to Syfy’s upcoming series “Ghost Wars” may soon discover there are more similarities than they think. “Ghost Wars” tells the story of a series of gruesome murders that plunge the town of Port Moore, Alaska, into terror. Vincent D’Onofrio, who many will recognize from his recent role as Kingpin in Netflix’s “Daredevil,” stars in the series. D’Onofrio plays a priest charged with comforting parishioners caught in the middle of the town’s violence.


‘It’s attractive. It’s bright.’ It’s the Victoria’s Secret PINK bus

Syfy • NBCUniversal

D’Onofrio indicated that the pace of the show is not for the faint of heart. “There are these relentless events that constantly happen through every episode,” D’Onofrio said. “Not only is that going on, but each person is being affected in an emotional way.” At the center of the mysterious violence is Roman Mercer, played by Avan Jogia. Mercer has the ability to see and communicate with dead people (just like “The Sixth Sense,” as Mercer points out in the first episode). Despite this common retread in ghost stories, Jogia said that the reason he was attracted to this show was because of its uniqueness. “I’ve always been a fan of genre and turn-

ing genre on its head and taking it to the limits that it can be taken,” Jogia said. “This show definitely does that.” Meat Loaf stars alongside D’Onofrio and Jogia, and is best known in film for his role as Eddie in the 1975 cult hit, “The Rocky Horror Picture Show.” He is also a best-selling musician, having sold over 80 million records worldwide. In “Ghost Wars,” Meat Loaf portrays a vocal member of the church. In the first released promo for the series, D’Onofrio’s preacher refers to the murders as “holy sh**” in a sermon, to which Meat Loaf’s character loudly proclaims them to be “unholy sh**.” “[This character] is so well written that I can take him as deep as the deepest part of any ocean in the world,” Meat Loaf said. “I

have that many levels to him.” Meat Loaf was happy to pass on a bit of interesting advice for up-and-coming actors that he learned from fellow actor, Michael Keaton. Keaton and Meat Loaf starred together in the 1987 film, “The Squeeze.” Meat Loaf explained that it was better for him as an actor to only be aware of his lines of the script in order to attain a more real sense for the work. “I don’t read the scripts,” Meat Loaf said. “For all you young actors out there, it’s about the truth, always.” “Ghost Wars” premieres Thursday at 10 p.m. on Syfy. Brandon Rowe interviewed the cast of “Ghost Wars” at this year’s San Diego Comic Con.

By Christian Mattos

Comfy line, clothes from the Fresno State collegiate line, water bottles, flip-flops, phone cases, hats and perfumes. There were also sales available for the students: a free Fresno State hat with a purchase, 20 percent off one item of Fresno State gear, two bath bombs for $10 and all bras for $25 each. “We just like to hit all the campuses, and we have a great network here with campus reps,” Capobianco said. “It’s a beautiful campus.” Cindy Garzon, a senior majoring in fashion merchandising, works as a Fresno State PINK representative. “It’s been pretty hectic,” Garzon said. “It’s a lot of work. It is really fun, but you have to actually get on top of your things, whether it’s doing a social media post or planning the events, making sure that they all go good and that people are happy.” Garzon said that the PINK marketing team based in Ohio worked with the Fresno State campus licenser to coordinate the bus’s visit to campus.

“It’s pretty exciting because only two schools in California got chosen, and it’s the first time they’ve ever come to Fresno State,” she said. Capobianco said the bus driver transports the bus to different campuses while she and other members of their team fly out to the tour locations. “It’s a special, unique experience that you get to shop the PINK bus,” Capobianco said. “It doesn’t travel that often, and it’s not an everyday kind of thing that you see on your campus, so we try to get to as many campuses as we can to give students that opportunity.” Freshmen Naimah Mohammed and Charlyne Learned waited for an hour in the line that stretched from the Memorial Garden to the edge of the University Student Union, but they said the wait was worth it. “[The bus] was cute,” Mohammed said. “It’s attractive. It’s bright. It just makes you want to go.”


In Fresno, there are city buses, school buses, even tour buses. And briefly, there was a PINK bus. The Victoria’s Secret PINK bus visited Fresno State on Monday as part of its college campus tour. Students lined up all day to enter the mobile store and get a taste of what the brand has to offer. PINK bus manager Emily Capobianco said the bus is one of two that travels around the country to college campuses and opens up shop for the day. “We go everywhere from Florida to California to Ohio, everywhere,” Capobianco said. “We have our campus reps; and they kind of do some kind of promotion; and then we have our shop open from about 10 [a.m.] to 4 [p.m.] with our regular core product, and then we have the campus line.” The bus had several items for PINK lovers to enjoy: bras from the new Cool and

See APPAREL, Page 5




This Week in Entertainment CineCulture to screen ‘Bitter Harvest

Wind Orchestra with the College of the Sequoias

CineCulture presents a screening of “Bitter Harvest” with a discussion led by director and producer George Mendeluk on Friday at 5:30 p.m. in the Peters Education Center Auditorium. The film is R-rated, runs for 103 minutes and is free and open to the public. Parking is not enforced after 4 p.m. on Fridays.

The Wind Orchestra will perform on Thursday at 8 p.m. in the Concert Hall. General tickets are $15, employee and senior tickets are $10 and student tickets are $5. For more information and to buy tickets, visit

Exhibition honors Juan Felipe Herrera The Center for Creativity and the Arts and the department of art and design pay tribute to Juan Felipe Herrera’s two-term tenure as poet laureate of the United States in an exhibition titled, “Magnifying the People’s Voice: A Laureate’s Journey Across America.” The exhibition will be on display Oct. 5 to 26 at the M Street Graduate Studios (1419 M St.) in downtown Fresno. The opening will be from 5 to 8 p.m. on Thursday as part of ArtHop.

International Cello Festival Cello Fresno brings the International Cello Festival to Fresno State Oct. 6 to 8. The festival will kick off on Friday at 8 p.m. in the Department of Music Concert Hall with the Cello Mania Concert. On Saturday, there will be solo competition at 6 p.m. in the Concert Hall, and on Sunday, there will be a gala concert at 4 p.m. in the Paul Shaghoian Concert Hall. For more information, visit

‘Back to The Bucket’ alumni mixer The Fresno State Creative Writing Alumni Chapter will celebrate its second annual fall mixer on Saturday from 5 to 7 p.m. at The Bucket Grill & Pub on campus. Admission and parking are free. Alumni who would like to read their poetry or prose are asked to sign up in advance at

‘A Particle of Dread’ continues this week Fresno State University Theatre continues its production of “A Particle of Dread (Oedipus Variations),” written by Sam Shepard and directed by J. Daniel Herring. The show will run until Saturday. Tickets are $10 for students; $15 for faculty, staff, alumni, seniors and military; and $17 for adults. For more information, contact the box office at 559-278-2216 or

What’s inside the PINK bus? APPAREL from Page 4 Learned said she heard about the bus through Facebook, and she liked the variety of items inside. “It was something different on campus,” Learned said. “I feel like they should do things like this more often because girls love to shop, especially PINK.” Sophomore Kaely Cullen said she waited 45 minutes in line for a peek inside the bus. She purchased a pair of black Fresno State athletic leggings. “I know PINK just came out with a new collegiate Fresno State collection, so I wanted to go in and see if they had more

stuff here than they did in store,” Cullen said. “They had different stuff than what I saw a month ago.” Cullen said she likes to shop at PINK for its apparel as well as the signature panties. “Whenever they have the seven for $28 underwear, I definitely swoop in on that,” she said. “I swear, I have over 40 pairs.” Cullen said she was glad to see the bus on campus because it brought more attention to the college. “I feel like Fresno State is kind of overshadowed by all the big universities like Cal, USC,” she said. “So I feel like them coming to Fresno is a big deal because we’re not seen a lot.”





Attorney says former student’s life ‘is ruined’ By Jessica Johnson @iamjesslj

The Fresno attorney who represented former Fresno State student and TimeOut mascot Deandre Jean-Pierre said “there is no way” his client was rightfully convicted of sexual battery. Jean-Pierre was found guilty in Fresno County Superior Court on Aug. 25 of two counts of sexual battery, both misdemeanors. Last November, the Fresno Police Department notified university students that multiple victims had come forward with similar reports of alleged groping. On Dec. 2, Jean-Pierre was arrested as the suspect in the gropings, and Criego said JeanPierre was kicked out of Fresno State before the trial began. Attorney Franz Criego, who represented Jean-Pierre during his trial, said he is not satisfied with the guilty verdict and pointed to several factors that may have led to it. He argued that black males accused of crimes are usually found guilty. According to the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, (NAACP), black males are five times more likely to be incarcerated than white males. “Since the early 1900s, anytime a nonwhite victim pointed to a black male and said, ‘He did it to me,’ irrespective of the evidence – DNA or otherwise – that black male has always been convicted,” Criego said. “It’s just called history.” Criego said there are photos of JeanPierre in Stockton at a barbecue at the time of at least one of the groping cases reported near campus. He said Jean-Pierre had a parking ticket from a hotel at 3 p.m. while he was in Stockton and could not have made it to Fresno in time for a different groping case he was later accused of. “The police turned around and took 4 to 6-year-old pictures that met the description [given] by these young ladies. And that’s how [Jean-Pierre] was identified,” Criego said. When they did the photo lineup, Criego

"The verdict is contrary to the evidence. It’s contrary to their theory." — Franz Criego, Fresno attorney

claimed investigators didn’t put in people who fit the description, leaving JeanPierre as the only person to match the description by the alleged victims. Jean-Pierre, according to Criego, lost his job and will not be able to walk with his graduating class at Fresno State. “What more can you do to this kid that hasn’t been done?” Criego asked during a phone conversation with The Collegian. “This kid’s life is ruined,” Criego said. He insists the arguments he made in court for Jean-Pierre, who has to register as a sex offender for life, prove his innocence even if he was found guilty. Fresno State confirmed in 2016 that Jean-Pierre had been named as a suspect in the groping incident. Since then, JeanPierre no longer studies at Fresno State. The day before Jean-Pierre’s trial, the district attorney released the evidence. Then, the district attorney claimed he “lacked sufficient resources to properly evaluate the evidence,” Criego charged. Jean-Pierre will be represented by another attorney in an appeal, Criego said. Jean-Pierre was originally accused of five counts of sexual battery. When it was lowered to four, one count was withdrawn, another was dismissed and he was found guilty only of two counts of sexual battery. Criego said, “The verdict is contrary to the evidence. It’s contrary to their theory.” He said testimony from four other students placed Jean-Pierre in Sacramento,

File photo • The Collegian

and three other students said they were at a barbecue with him in Stockton during the alleged crimes. Fresno County Superior Court Judge John Vogt sentenced Jean-Pierre on Sept. 28 to two concurrent, 360-day jail terms. However, Vogt credited his time already served in custody and suspended the remainder of his sentence, according to

KFSN-TV. Criego said Jean-Pierre had served a total of 30 days in jail during the trial and will register as a sex offender for life. He will be on probation for three years, he added. Fresno State’s Title IX coordinator, Erin Boele, could not be reached for comment on this story.


Contract extension could mean more pay for faculty By Razmik Cañas @Raz_Canas

California State University faculty might be receiving a salary boost within the next few years. The California Faculty Association’s (CFA) bargaining team and board of directors voted unanimously on Sept. 25 for a tentative agreement with California State University management on a twoyear contract extension. “It is especially important that with this agreement, CSU management has committed to work hard along with CFA to win the state funding for our public

university system that our students need and deserve,” said CFA President Jennifer Eagan in a September news release. The contract extension includes a salary increase of 6 percent that will be distributed over the next two years. In 2018, faculty salary will increase by 3.5 percent, and in 2019, it will increase by 2.5 percent. Diane Blair, president of Fresno State’s chapter of CFA, said the faculty who will receive this raise would include part-time and full-time faculty; tenured and tenure-track faculty; librarians; counselors; and coaches who teach courses. “That helps to make sure that we’re not falling behind in terms of inflation, and

it provides a way for faculty to plan for themselves and their families going forward,” Blair said. “And we get to have all of that without a big contract fight which is pretty great.” The original contract is set to end in January of 2018, and the proposed contract will extend to 2020. Current contract language on faculty benefits, including health insurance and retirement, will remain the same. The next step will be for all the CFA members to vote on the final agreement before the November CSU board of trustees meeting. “Typically, they [the board] want to hear from faculty and if the faculty are

happy and have voted for the agreement, then the board of trustees is usually supportive as well,” Blair said. Blair said this extension will let the CFA focus on potential projects for student success. These include advocating for DACA students and a push for free higher education. The agreement also proposes joint working groups to discuss issues such as academic freedom, intellectual property, and repairs to the broken salary structure. “Not having to battle over our own contract gives us time and energy to work on those things,” Blair said.




Injury Inside San Jose State football: A conversation with the Spartan Daily sports editor hurts division title hopes Q&A


File photo • The Collegian

Fresno State defensive back Tyquwan Glass (25) taunts San Jose State wide receiver Rahshead Johnson (8) on Nov. 26, 2016. San Jose State won 16-14.

By Daniel Gligich @danielgligich

Coming off a win in the conference opener against Nevada, Fresno State is 2-2 and gearing up to face rival San Jose State on Saturday. The Spartans are 1-5, with their only win coming against Cal Poly. The Collegian spoke with Luke Johnson, the sports editor at San Jose State’s student-run newspaper, the Spartan Daily, to discuss the upcoming game. DG: San Jose State has struggled so far this year with a 1-5 record. How would you assess the team’s first half? LJ: The Spartans are getting blown out in every game that isn’t against an FCS team. The only thing the team has done consistently well is kick and punt. DG: Former head coach Ron Caragher was fired the day after beating Fresno State last year, and Brent Brennan was hired shortly after. How tough of a job has Brennan had so far, and how does the road ahead look? LJ: When a team isn’t doing well, people will initially point to the head coach as the problem. However, Brent Brennan gets a free pass this season. I firmly believe that great players make great coaches in college football, and Brennan is currently playing with the previous coach’s players. This isn’t the same situation as when Urban Meyer took over Ohio State, because he already had four- and five-star

recruits at his disposal. This is San Jose State, and Brennan is dealing with mostly two-star recruits. It won’t be for another two or three years until his hand-selected players get most of the playing time. He has until then to prove that the program is performing at an adequate level. DG: Fresno State also has a new head coach this year – Jeff Tedford. How would you compare the coaching situations? LJ: Brennan and Tedford are almost polar opposites. Brennan is a first-time head coach and is trying to prove he has what it takes to run a successful program. Meanwhile, Tedford had moderate success in a previous leading role and is trying to prove that he hasn’t lost a step. DG: The schools are rivals, and the winner gets the Valley trophy, which started in 2013. How would you assess the state of the rivalry right now? LJ: I’m surprised it took 92 years and 76 meetings for this game to finally have a name and a trophy. However, it makes sense that the rivalry was first honored in its heyday of 2013 – aka the Derek Carr vs. David Fales era. The fact that Carr never beat SJSU is one of the program’s greatest accomplishments in recent history. Both teams are currently in the proverbial and cliche rebuilding stage, and I don’t expect the rivalry to reach those heights again for another 10 or 20 years. DG: Senior defensive back Andre Chachere is from Fresno, but is a Spartan

who has played in almost every game in his time at San Jose State. Is he the best player on defense? LJ: Chachere was the best player on SJSU’s defense last year, but linebacker Frank Ginda, who leads the country in tackles per game (14.5), has been the team’s MVP this season. However, I do expect Chachere to have a breakout performance during the rest of conference play. DG: Who are the impact players on offense? LJ: The offense performs much more smoothly with redshirt-freshman gunslinger Montel Aaron behind center. He has a touchdown to interception ratio of 4-1, and the team has thrown 4-8 without him. Unfortunately for SJSU, he’s been out for the past two games with a right leg injury and isn’t expected to return for another two weeks at the earliest. Another guy who has played well is sophomore wide receiver Bailey Gaither. He has 21 receptions for 314 yards and four touchdowns through five games. However, he didn’t play last week either, due to injury, but he hasn’t been ruled out against Fresno State. DG: What is your game prediction? LJ: I rarely ever bet on my own school – especially as an underdog – but I will under these circumstances. The Spartans have nothing to lose. This is their Super Bowl. Crazy things tend to happen in rivalry games. Therefore, SJSU wins, 23-21.

backup EJ Manuel, a first round draft pick by the Buffalo Bills in 2013. Manuel has shown flashes of talent during his career, including when he was called into action without notice on Sunday. That, by the way, is the only reason why you shouldn’t completely lose all hope for the Raiders making the playoffs. Manuel has a 6-11 record when starting, with 19 touchdowns and 16 interceptions for his career. Not great, but not horrible either. And it’s not exactly as if the team has an excellent defense to help prop Manuel up. While it has definitely been better than it was anticipated to be before the season, the defense still ranks 20th out of 32 in yards allowed per game at just a shade under 340 and 13th in points allowed per game, surrendering 19.8 per contest. It certainly will be tough. If the worstcase scenario plays out and Carr misses six weeks, he would return Nov. 26 at home, ironically against the team that put him out in the first place, the Broncos. In between, Oakland will play Baltimore, San Diego, Kansas City, Buffalo, Miami and New England. Those teams have a combined record of 12-11 with San Diego being winless at 0-4. The Raiders will have to take advantage of playing the weaker part of their schedule, and if all goes well, it is reasonable to expect the team to go 3-3 in those games and have Carr return to the lineup with Oakland at a 5-5 record. Best-case scenario, they go 4-2 and end up at 6-4. By then will the division title be too far out of reach and will the Raiders be left with the wild card as their only option to get into the postseason tournament? Only time will tell, but it’s reasonable to say that the Raiders end up going 3-3, and Carr will come back to save the day and keep his team in playoff contention. Of course, that is if he misses the full six games. If not and he returns sooner, all the better.

Jose Carlos Fajardo • Bay Area News Group/TNS

Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr (4) throws a pass against the New York Jets in the first quarter on Sept. 17, 2017 at the Oakland Coliseum in Oakland, California. The Raiders won 45-20.





Top Dog of the Week: KeeSean Johnson


Wide receiver KeeSean Johnson (3) runs with the ball against Nevada on Sept. 30, 2017 at Bulldog Stadium. Fresno State won 41-21.

By William Ramirez @willoveslakers2

Wide receiver KeeSean Johnson’s successful efforts in the offseason to add 14 pounds to his frame may go unnoticed, but what can’t be ignored is Johnson’s efforts on the field. His stellar play has earned him this week’s Top Dog honor. The junior’s chemistry with newly appointed starting quarterback Marcus McMaryion was on full display Saturday against the University of Nevada. Johnson finished with 104 yards receiving and three touchdowns. “As a player, you just have to execute in whatever position [the coaches] put you in,” Johnson said. “That’s all I try to do.” That dedication to execution began in the offseason when he challenged himself to add weight to his frame in order to make himself a much more physically intimidating presence. Johnson said the coaches were adamant with him about

adding the right kind of weight. He said, “Eating right, working out a lot and just working hard” were the main contributors to his healthy weight gain. Many of those workouts were done alongside his brother, former San Jose State safety Vince Miles. “It’s a brother thing. I’m an offensive player. He’s a defensive player. Just going at it against him every day, so many reps with him,” Johnson said. “He’s always going to help me in the long run.” Johnson added that his brother has always served as an excellent role model and mentor. Johnson said that next to himself, his brother is his biggest critic. He even called Miles a “father figure.” “Me and my brother are real close,” he said. “He always showed me a lot, and he always led me in the right way.” Johnson said he and his brother are always challenging each other to be better, in football and in life. His support system extends past his brother to the rest of his family, specifically his mother, Monique Burns, and his


The Raiders just can’t catch a break.

By Michael Ford @MFordCollegian

When fans saw Raiders quarterback and Fresno State alum Derek Carr lie motionless on the turf in Mile High Stadium in Denver, no doubt many were thinking: Oh no. Not again. Please not again. That’s what happens when your franchise quarterback is in the middle of his bounce back campaign after breaking his leg at the end of last year’s regular season.

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Daniel Avalos • The Collegian

father, Sean Johnson. “Family is a big part of my life. My mom, she deserves a lot so I try to do whatever I can to make her proud, and my dad just as much,” Johnson said. “I work for them every day. I work for myself, but at the end of the day, it just comes down to working for your family.” He added that what makes his parents’ contributions so effective is the polarity of their personalities. His father serves as another helpful critic. Sean Johnson is constantly looking for ways in which KeeSean could improve. “He’s always on me, no matter how good I do,” the wideout said of his father. “I scored three touchdowns in the first half last weekend, and after the game he told me ‘But you didn’t score any more in the second half, so where does it balance out?’” Johnson said his mother is the one who provides the love. She does not know a lot about the sport her sons have been playing all their lives, but she knows how important it is to support them.

“She’s always going to be there, always going to be in the stands cheering me on,” he said. The junior’s role amongst his football family is much different. There he must serve as a leader and mentor for others, especially his fellow wide receivers. “I feel like the way I prepare during practice can translate to the rest of our position group,” Johnson said. “You practice a lot, so sometimes coming out with energy is hard, so sometimes you just got to fake it till’ you make it so the other people can feed off your juice.” There’s a familiar opponent in the Bulldog’s foreground, the San Jose Spartans, conference opponent and Johnson’s brother’s former team. “It’s the Valley Game, that’s what we’re gonna play for, and we’re gonna prepare like we want to be the Valley champs,” the junior said. Johnson said he is excited to face Spartan defensive backs Andre Chachere and Maurice McKnight on Saturday in San Jose.

According to multiple media reports, Carr was diagnosed on Monday with a fractured transverse process in his back and is expected to be out of action for two to six weeks. He was injured on a sack in the third quarter Sunday in the 16-10 loss to the Broncos. Perhaps it’s too early to sound the alarm bells – it is only Week 5 coming up after all – but when your team that you have loved all your life is coming off of its first winning season in over a decade, you can’t help but let the panic set in.

The impact of the injury to Carr is twofold. Obviously there’s the injury itself, but also it certainly doesn’t help that Oakland plays in one of the toughest, if not the toughest, divisions in the NFL – the AFC West along with the Broncos, Chargers and Chiefs. All four teams in the division have been given serious consideration to make the playoffs by various pundits throughout the media. For now, Oakland will rely on veteran


October 4, 2017  
October 4, 2017