New Mexico State-New Mexico
Start Time: 8:00 P.M. ET, Saturday, Oct. 3
Location: University Stadium, Albuquerque, New Mexico
TV: Root Sports
Records: New Mexico State 0-3, New Mexico 2-2. New Mexico leads the overall series 69-31-5.
Live Stats: here.
Betting Line: New Mexico State +12.5. Over/Under: 69.
New Mexico State Outlook: NMSU is #4 nationally with an IsoPPP of 1.58. The Aggies also score 5.11 points per trip inside the 40 and have turnover luck of +5.52 points per game. Behind the rushing of sophomore Larry Rose III (50/319/3TD), the Aggies are in the top 50 in nearly every rushing advanced statistic. The Aggies are averaging 137.3 yards per game on the ground.
Passing the football has been an all or nothing endeavor with one of the worst efficiency ratings, but one of the most explosive IsoPPP ratings in the nation. Quarterback Tyler Rogers (60-111/866/7TD) has to improve on his accuracy. His favorite target is junior receiver Teldrick Morgan (13/249/2TD). Tyrain Taylor (14/264/3TD) has a solid catch rate at 63.6%, but no receiver on the team has a catch rate of 67% or higher. Overall, the Aggies are averaging 286.0 yards per game in the air.
NMSU is not good at all on the defensive side of the ball. Offenses are successful on 49.3% of all plays, ranking the Aggies at #119 nationally, nearly 9% higher than the national average. The Aggies are also giving up 5.37 points per trip inside the 40 yard line. The Aggies are dreadful versus the run game with offenses able to break off big runs regularly. NMSU is giving up 234.3 yards per game on the ground with a 5.32 yards per carry average. The pass defense is giving up a successful passing play on an astounding 57.8% of all plays. The Aggies are giving up 342.3 yards per game in the air.
Players to watch for on the NMSU defense include: Jaden Wright (33 tkl, 1 INT), Derek Ibekwe (22 tkl, 1 tfl), Rodney Butler (22 tkl, 3 tfl, 1 sack), and Terrill Hanks (21 tkl, 1 tfl, 1 sack).
New Mexico Outlook: The Lobos are the #33 most explosive offense in the nation, despite a predominant rushing attack. UNM averages 5.19 points per trip inside the 40 yard line and average starting on the 32.5 yard line. New Mexico’s turnover luck is in the positive at +3.45 points per game.
The rush offense is successful on only 44.9% of their plays. Even with a lower than expected success rate, the Lobos are surviving with one of the most explosive running games in the nation. Running back Jhurell Pressley (57/253/1TD) and quarterback Lamar Jordan (36/278/1TD) lead a rushing offense that has four 100+ yard rushers on the season. As a whole, the offense is averaging 262.3 yards per game and 5.4 yards per carry on the season.
The Lobos are not good passing the football and rarely successful with a 31.4% success rate. Quarterback Lamar Jordan (24-40/373/2TD) is connecting on passes at a 60% rate, but only three players on the team have five or more catches on the season. Dameon Gamblin (15/230/1TD), Carlos Wiggins (6/140/1TD), and Delane Hart-Johnson (5/36/0TD) have been targeted on 55.4% of all pass attempts.
New Mexico’s defense has a lot to be desired so far this season, but have been greatly helped by a special teams that has forced opponents to start on their own 25.8 yard line. The Lobos have one of the better defenses in the nation at stopping third or fourth and short. The rush defense is only giving up 119.8 yards per game on the ground. Many times, third down conversions are coming in the air, rather than on the ground. UNM is among the bottom 31 in defensive S&P+, success rate, and IsoPPP. The defense is giving up 263.0 yards per game in the air, as well as 8.4 yards per pass attempt. Overall, the Lobos are giving up 382.8 yards per game of total offense.
Players to watch out for on the New Mexico defense include: Kimmie Carson (31 tkl, 4.5 tfl, 1.5 sacks), Dakota Cox (30 tkl, 4.5 tfl, 1.5 sacks, 1 INT), and Maurice Daniels (17 tkl, 4.5 tfl, 2.5 sacks).
Prediction: New Mexico is nearly a ten point favorite according to advanced statistics. The Aggies currently are looking at a 28% win probability. New Mexico should not encounter any issues running the football. The Aggies will score at least 25 points, but that total will not be enough in falling to the Lobos. New Mexico 38, New Mexico State 28.