Coming off of a gutsy comeback win over Idaho, the New Mexico State Aggies looked to get a bonafide winning streak going for the first time in years. That desired streak is exactly what they got in facing down a hapless Texas State Bobcats team and pulling away from them for a 31-21 win on the Bobcats' homecoming on Saturday afternoon.
Texas State and NMSU put together a back and forth contest for the first three quarters, as five lead changes and a late fourth quarter comeback by the Aggies for a 2nd straight week led to an exciting victory for the Aggies for a 2nd straight week. NMSU running back Larry Rose III torched the hapless Bobcat defense for--sit down for this--207 rushing yards, 2 rushing touchdowns, 85 receiving yards, and 2 receiving touchdown, including the Aggies' two final touchdowns that sealed the victory for NMSU in the 4th quarter.
NMSU, meanwhile, held stiff on defense when it mattered and shut down Texas State's mostly impotent and predictable offense by forcing two interceptions by Bobcat quarterback Tyler Jones and a lost fumble as well. They also held Tyler Jones to 17 net rushing yards and kept running back Robert Lowe under 100 yards, limiting the ultimate effectiveness of the Bobcat offense. Texas State's defense looked overmatched for yet another week as they gave up 527 yards to NMSU and let 3rd string Aggie quarterback Nick Jeanty pass for almost 300 yards in Bobcat Stadium.
Although NMSU looks to be potentially turning things around after years in the wilderness, Texas State now looks to be one of the worst teams in all of FBS and has transitioned into full meltdown mode. The #FireFran and #FireTeis hashtags started becoming increasingly popular on Texas State Twitter following the game (full disclosure: I tweeted them as well), and a bad situation was only made worse by derisive comments from athletic director Larry Teis's daughter.
Her reaction in some ways is understandable, as a daughter is obviously going to stand up for a father that is getting publicly pilloried. But given that Larry Teis already has a reputation of being arrogant and ultimately dismissive of most donors who aren't financial heavy hitters, this is the absolute opposite message that any member of his family should be airing publicly right now.
UPDATE: Ms. Teis has since apologized publicly.
NMSU improves to 2-7 (2-3) on the season while Texas State falls to 2-6 (1-3) in 2015. The Aggies will continue their road slate with a trip to Louisiana Lafayette, who barely escaped Georgia State today. Texas State will face those same Panthers at 3 P.M. next Saturday, and GSU's powerful offense could end up dealing a knockout blow to a program in crisis.
More on this game and the resulting dumpster fire from the Bobcat perspective later this week.