Monday, May 4, 2009

Meet Joel Busch

There are a number of unsung Spartan fans, many of who could actually and accurately be described in a good way as fanatics. Count Joel Busch among them for his unwavering support of San Jose State athletics. We recently met Joel for the first time at the men's basketball banquet and, after an evening of conversation, we were convinced that he deserved greater recognition for his Spartan fealty. Here is our interview with Joel.

Q - Why are you a Spartan fan?

JB - Both of my parents were San Jose State graduates (my father was also an Accounting instructor in the School of Business back in the 70's) and, despite growing up only a few miles away from Stanford University in Menlo Park, watching our Jack Elway-led Spartans trounce Stanford at the Farm as a kid got me forever hooked on San Jose State athletics.

Q - How long have you had this allegiance?

JB - As detailed above, essentially since day one - although from the early 80's as an active attendee of Spartan athletics.

Q - Do you have some sort of game attendance streak, either in football or basketball or both? What about road games?

JB - I have had football and men's basketball season tickets for a number of years and, beginning in high school in the late 80's, I began to attend many road football games (mostly those in California). However, back in 2002, I was just about to go to the football game at Illinois as my brother and his wife were going to be in the area on vacation but I was unable to go because I just purchased a house in Rio del Mar a couple of days before the game. Of course, we ended up winning the game and I remember right after that game thinking "man ..... I should have gone to the game!" After that, I realized that the only way not to miss out on a SJS road win is to go to them all. Since 2005, the only football road game that I have missed was the 2006 game at Hawaii and I do not plan on missing any games from here on out. Of course, there a number of Spartan fans that I know that have not missed a football game for many years - some since the early 80's.

Q - What is the furthest you have traveled to see a SJSU game?

JB - I suppose that would be Hawaii - followed closely by Illinois and Louisiana Tech.

Q - What is the most memorable game or games you have seen in person?

JB - So many ... I suppose the three-peat wins over Stanford in the late 90's stick out - especially the untouched return of an on-sides kickoff for a touchdown against Stanford by Casey LeBlanc back in '98.

Q - Who is the best SJSU football player you have witnessed? Men's basketball player?

JB - Basketball - Ricky Berry.

Football - It is too hard to name just one so I will have to try (as hard as it may be) to name one for offense and one for defense - Deonce Whitaker and Lyneil Mayo.

Q - What is your take on the current SJSU football and men's basketball programs?

JB - 110% behind the way both of them are going into the upcoming seasons.

Coach Tomey and the rest of the top-notch football coaches and staff have put us back on par to where we were back in the 80's. Having Coach Malley on the offensive side will make huge difference (on the positive side) this year. If a number of Spartans on the defensive side can fill-in at or near the same level as those who graduated last year we will be in great shape to compete for the WAC title. Justin Cole will be the leader of the defense.

As for the basketball team, we had one of the most talented teams this past year as we have had since the Bill Berry days. Coach Nessman and the Assistant Coaches have done a tremendous job in recruiting - in regards to both talent and especially years of eligibility for the recruits. With a healthy Adrian Oliver and Justin Graham for the upcoming season - coupled with C.J. and Oakes down low - we should and need to be one of the top four programs in the WAC next year. It is critical that we do not lose to teams that we should have beaten "on paper" next year like we did this year.

Q - What do you do for a living and why did you choose this occupation?

JB - I manage a comprehensive tax consulting practice - for both for businesses and individuals - in Aptos, California. I chose this occupation because I always enjoyed working with complex legal matters and helping people with matters that are complex. Also, because my father was a long-time corporate tax manager and I looked up to the work he did for others over the years.

Joel M. Busch, EA,ATA,ATP,MST
The JW Group
9057-B Soquel Drive, Suite F
Aptos, CA 95003

We thank Joel for his time and participation here and certainly for his support of Spartan athletics.

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