New Mexico State Director of Athletics Mario Moccia has announced two new football series for the Aggies’ upcoming independent schedules.
The first, announced on Friday, is a four game series against fellow independent school UMass. The first ever meeting between the two schools will take place November 7, 2020 in Amherst, Massachusetts.
The series will come to Las Cruces on November 27, 2021 then repeat with games in Amherst in 2022 and at Aggie Memorial Stadium in 2023.
This was almost an inevitable series as both teams are independents and must find enough teams to play. With that being said, it should be a great series and opportunity for NM State football to show itself to recruits in the Northeast.
The second series is against a somewhat familiar foe in Fresno State. The series, announced today, is for the 2019 and 2020 seasons.
The first game will take place September 28, 2019 at Aggie Memorial Stadium with the next game in the series taking place October 17, 2020 in Fresno at Bulldog Stadium.
The meeting in 2019 forced NMSU to move a previously scheduled game against UL-Lafayette to October 24, 2020.
The 2019 matchup will mark the first meeting between the two programs in eight years. The series has been on and off as both teams played each other every year from 1984-1991 (both members of the Pacific Coast Athletic Association) and again from 2005-2011 (both members of the Western Athletic Conference).
Fresno State holds a 17-1 overall lead in the series but NMSU won the last meeting in 2011, 48-45.
Both series are great opportunities for NM State to spread it’s brand and expose more kids in talent rich areas to the kind of football played by the Aggies.
I love that the AD Moccia is making it a point to schedule games with other independent schools. It’s a natural fit and makes it feel like all the independents are actually in a conference. From the looks of it on Twitter, Aggie Nation should have a pretty good group of fans on hand for the games in Amherst too!
As for the Fresno State game, I will be fired up as this is another opportunity for the Aggies to beat up on a Mountain West team and show the conference they can belong. Fresno State is usually a good team and playing in a region where New Mexico State has and continues to recruit is important to the players and program.
With the new additions, NMSU now has 10 games scheduled for the 2019 season (only need two more) and five for 2021 (seven more needed).