I-25 In-State Rivalry Continues Saturday
Saturday's game between New Mexico State (1-2, 0-0) and the University of New Mexico (1-2, 0-0) is the 104th meeting between the I-25 rivals. The game is scheduled for a 6 p.m. (MT) start at Aggie Memorial Stadium in Las Cruces, N.M. The game will also be televised on ESPN3.com
You can listen to all the action with the 'Voice of the Aggies' Jack Nixon and color analyst Jason Scott beginning at 5 p.m. on KRGT 104 FM. Also catch the action in Spanish with Martin Cortez and Bob Sherman on Vista 98.7 FM.
The Lobos have a 66-32-5 lead in the series that began in 1893. The 104 games make the NM State-UNM series the 35th-longest in the NCAA record book.
NM State has won the last three meetings in the series, just one short of the Aggies' longest winning streak of four games, dating back to 1965-68.
Aggies and Lobos Meet For the 104th Time
The Aggies and Lobos met for the first time in 1893 with the Lobos coming out on top, 25-5. NM State's first win in the series came in 1894, an 18-6 win for the Aggies. The overall series record is 66-32-5 (Lobos), but the Aggies did defeat the Lobos in three straight years in 2009, 2010 and 2011 for the first time since 1966-68. The Aggies snapped the Lobos' six-game winning streak in the series in 2009, winning for the first time in Albuquerque, since 1999. It was also the first win for NM State in the series since 2002.
In 2011, the Aggies defeated the New Mexico Lobos 42-28 at University Stadium on Saturday night. It was the third straight win for the Aggies over their in-state rival Lobos and the first time since the 1966, '67 and '68 seasons that the Aggies have beaten the Lobos three years in a row. The Aggies totaled 538 yards of offense in the game, led by quarterback Matt Christian who threw for a career-high 296 yards and a career-high four touchdown passes. Christian also rushed for 101 yards, another career-high and scored a rushing touchdown.
The 2010 contest was a battle that saw the NM State defeat New Mexico, 16-14, on a field goal by Tyler Stampler in the final minutes of the game.
As the clock was winding down and the stadium was roaring, the game came down to its last drive, and in the end New Mexico State claimed its first Rio Grande Rivalry victory against the University of New Mexico in a thrilling 20-17 victory in 2009.
It is the first win against the Lobos for the Aggies since 2002 and its first win in Albuquerque since 1999. Head coach DeWayne Walker earned his first Division I victory and his first win against UNM.
The Aggies finished with 218 yards of total offense with 122 yards coming on the running game. In his first career start at quarterback, Trevor Walls was 10-19 passing for 77 yards and one interception. Seth Smith led the way by rushing for 113 yards on 31 attempts.
With 7:39 remaining in the game, Jeff Fleming, who came in early in the fourth quarter, began the game winning drive from NM State's own 41-yard line. On 4th down and less than 50 seconds to go, Fleming hit Marcus Anderson from 4 yards out to put the Aggies ahead for good 20-17. Fleming finished the game with 19 yards passing and a touchdown.
The year 2012 is important in the history of the state of New Mexico- marking the centennial celebration of New Mexico statehood upon its entrance into the United States of America.
The year of 2012 has been celebrated across the campus of New Mexico State University and the entire state of New Mexico.
One of the long-standing traditions in collegiate athletics in the state of New Mexico is the rivalry between NM State and the University of New Mexico.
One hundred years ago, the NM State football team faced UNM in Albuquerque, N.M., for just the seventh meeting between the two schools. The Aggies ended up winning the game 27-0 to improve their record at the time against the Lobos to 5-2.
Since 1912 the Aggies and Lobos have faced each other in 93 games. The Aggies have gone 26-65-2 against the Lobos since their first victory against their in-state rivals as an official state.
The Aggies now hold a three-game winning streak against the Aggies heading into this Saturday's matchup against the Lobos. An Aggie win against the Lobos will tie the all-time winning streak against the Lobos, dating back to the 1960s when NM State rolled off four consecutive wins from 1965-68.
History of NM State vs. New Mexico Traveling Trophies
NM State and UNM first met in 1893 - nine years before the first Rose Bowl. The two teams played seven games against each other before New Mexico became a state in 1912.
During the history of the series a traveling trophy was at stake including the Maloof Trophy (1993-2001) and the Rio Grande Rivalry Trophy (2007-2008). Below is a small history on each.
The Rio Grande Rivalry Trophy
The New Mexico State Athletics Department in a joint effort with the University of New Mexico Athletics Department announced in July of 2007 that NM State and UNM would start a traveling rivalry trophy between the two schools. The NM State versus UNM rivalry series, called the Rio Grande Rivalry, premiered in the 2007-08 athletic calendar year and highlighted one of the most competitive rivalries in the nation. The Lobos won the trophy in the 2007-08 and 2008-09 academic years before it was discontinued.
The competition of the rivalry series was based upon a point system devised to reward victories from athletic competition between the two schools. There was a possible 25.5 points to be earned from victories in various sports. If the schools face each other more than once in a certain sport, each individual game will have points on the line.
At the end of the athletic year, the school that had accumulated the most points from Rio Grande Rivalry victories would hold the trophy for an entire year. The trophy was presented to the winning school at the end of the year.
The Maloof Trophy
Though the in-State rivalry dates back to 1893, the New Mexico State - New Mexico football series had awarded a traveling trophy to the winning team. The Maloof Trophy, presented by First Security Bank to the winner of "The Big Game," originated in 1993. The trophy was discontinued in 2001.
Scouting the Lobos
The Lobos enter Saturday's game with the Aggies at 1-2 on the season after a win over Southern to open the season and losses against Texas and Texas Tech. New Mexico is averaging 261.7 yards a game of total offense, rushing for 212.3 and throwing for 49.3 yards, while scoring 26.7 points a game. The Lobo defense is allowing 486.0 yards a contest and 38.3 points a game.
Quarterback B.R. Holbrook has thrown for 132 yards and one touchdown, averaging 44.0 yards a game. Cole Gaustche leads the running attack with 159 yards on the season, with two touchdowns. Carlos Wiggins has four catches for 36 yards to lead the receiving corps.
Defensively, Dallas Bollema leads the way with 24 tackles, followed by Matt Raymer with 15.
The Last Year against New Mexico
New Mexico State defeated New Mexico 42-28 at University Stadium marking the third straight win for the Aggies over their in-state rival Lobos and the first time since the 1966, '67 and '68 seasons that the Aggies have beaten the Lobos three years in a row.
The Aggies totaled 538 yards of offense in the game, led by quarterback Matt Christian who threw for a career-high 296 yards and a career-high four touchdown passes. Christian also rushed for 101 yards, another career-high and scored a rushing touchdown.
Running back Kenny Turner led the rushing attack with 109 yards and a touchdown. Four different Aggies caught touchdowns. Austin Franklin led with a career-high 115 yards on five catches.
The Aggie defense allowed 428 yards of total offense, most in the second half. Donyae Coleman had 10 tackles to lead the defense including his third interception of the season.
After a Lobo punt to begin the second half, the Aggies drove 97 yards capped off by a 29-yard rushing touchdown by Turner. It was the Aggies' longest scoring drive of the season, giving NM State a 35-7 lead with 6:30 left in the third quarter.
Coleman made his third career pick on the next Lobo series but the Aggies fumbled on the next series. The Lobos scored a nine-yard touchdown run five plays later, to make it 35-14 with 1:45 left in the third.
There was a flurry of scoring late in the fourth quarter. UNM took the ball 93 yards to bring the score to 35-21 with just over three minutes to play. The Aggies recovered the on-side kick and Todd Lee returned the ball inside the Lobo 20-yard line. Christian hit Jerrel Brown on a 15-yard touchdown pass to make it 42-21 with 1:46 remaining. The Lobos added a touchdown with 39 seconds left to make it 42-28.
Franklin took the opening kick and returned it 54 yards. A 15-yard personal foul penalty on UNM gave NM State great field position. The Aggies scored two plays later on a 22-yard touchdown pass from Christian to Lee, giving NM State a 7-0 lead with 14:09 to go in the first quarter.
On the Aggies' next drive, Christian hit Franklin for a 50-yard touchdown pass with 7:26 left in the first. It was a season-long touchdown pass for Christian and career-long touchdown reception for Franklin.
Christian again drove the Aggies down for a score, hitting Kemonte Bateman for a 25-yard touchdown pass with 1:42 left in the first. It was Bateman's first career touchdown reception. Christian was 7-of-7 in the first three drives for 150 yards and three touchdown passes.
The Lobos got on the board midway through the second, punching it in from eight yards out with 8:17 to go in the half, as NM State held a 21-7 lead. Christian later scored on a one-yard touchdown run to give NM State a 28-7 lead with 4:07 to go in the half.
Manley Stacking up to Last Year's Numbers
Quarterback Andrew Manley's productivity this season is similar to his numbers in his only three games last season. This season, Manley has thrown for 789 yards and seven touchdowns, compared to 892 yards and six touchdowns in 2011.
Against UTEP, Manley surpassed the 2,000-yard passing mark with 290 yards on 20-of-47 passing.
Manley is currently third in the WAC in passing yards per game (263.0) and fourth in total offense per game (240.7). He now has seven games in his career with over 200 yards passing and two games with over 300 yards passing.
In three games in 2011, Manley threw for 892 yards on 62-of-109 passing and six touchdowns, completing 56 percent of his pass attempts. In the Aggies' opening game of the season against Ohio (Sept. 3), Manley threw for a career-high 362 yards and two touchdowns, including a career-long pass of 54 yards. He then led the Aggies to the school's first ever win over a Big Ten opponent at Minnesota (Sept. 10) 28-21. Manley completed 20-of-31 for 288 yards and a career-high three touchdowns. Against I-10 rival UTEP, Manley passed for 242 yards and a touchdown on 20-of-37.
For his career, Manley has thrown for 2,285 yards and 14 touchdowns, while completing 52.9 percent of his pass attempts.
Franklin Continues to Be the Aggies' Top Receiver
Wide receiver Austin Franklin set career highs with eight receptions for 236 yards and two touchdowns in New Mexico State's season-opening win over Sacramento State, 49-19. The 236 yards are the third most in school history and the most by a WAC receiver since 2006. He also caught a career-long 84-yard pass from quarterback Andrew Manley for a touchdown. Franklin was named WAC Offensive Player of the Week for his efforts.
Against Ohio, Franklin again led the Aggies with five catches for 72 yards and a touchdown. He also recorded his first career field goal block on special teams.
Versus UTEP, Franklin caught seven passes for 104 yards and two touchdowns. He now has two games with over 100 yards receiving and two touchdown catches.
Nationally, Franklin ranks second in receiving yards per game, is tied for 24th in receptions per game and 34th in all-purpose yards. He ranks first in the WAC in two categories (receptions per game and receiving yards per game).
Franklin saw action in all 13 games for NM State in 2011 at wide receiver and as a returner of kickoffs and punts. He grabbed 34 receptions for 524 yards and three touchdowns on the season, including 22 yards rushing on four carries. Franklin also returned three kicks for 103 yards including a long of 54. He registered a career-high eight receptions for 66 yards and a touchdown at BYU.
For his career, Franklin has caught 54 passes for 939 yards and eight touchdowns, averaging 17.4 yards per catch.
Franklin Added to Biletnikoff Watch List
New Mexico State wide receiver Austin Franklin has been added to the 2012 Biletnikoff Watch List. The award is named for Fred Biletnikoff, the Florida State University All-America receiver and a Pro-Football Hall of Famer. The award has been given out for the past 17 years. This is the second straight season an Aggie wide receiver has been named to the watch list. (Taveon Rogers - 2011)
Franklin has caught 20 passes for 415 yards and five touchdowns, leading the Aggies. He has also tallied 414 all-purpose.
The recipient of the 2012 Biletnikoff Award will be announced live on ESPN on The Home Depot College Football Awards in early December. The Biletnikoff Award Presentation Banquet will be held at the University Center Club at Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida, on Saturday, February 9, 2013.
Bonilla Proves a Solid Linebacker
Linebacker Bryan Bonilla started the 2012 season off with a solid game against Sacramento State. Bonilla had 11 tackles and a tackle for a loss. It was his second double-digit tackle game of his career. Bonilla then tallied 10 tackles against Ohio this past week, breaking the 100-tackle mark for his career. Against UTEP, Bonilla five tackles.
He currently ranks third in the WAC for tackles per game and is tied for 69th in the nation.
Bonilla is the Aggies' leading returning tackler from 2011. He started for the Aggies at linebacker in all 13 games in 2011, and played on special teams. He recorded 71 tackles on the season, including 1.5 for a loss, a sack and two pass break-ups.
For his career, Bonilla has 108 tackles, two and a half tackles for a loss, two pass break-ups and a sack.
Powell Hard to Stop in Red Zone
Running back Tiger Powell has been a scoring machine for the Aggies in the first three games of the season. Against Sacramento State, Powell punched it in twice, then again versus Ohio and added to his total versus UTEP with a 1-yard plunge.
Powell has rushed for four of the Aggies' seven red zone touchdowns this season. He has recorded 109 yards on the ground in three games and is second on the team behind teammate Austin Franklin for the team's leading scorer. Powell is also tied for sixth in the WAC in scoring.
Mustafa Hits Big Return
Running back Akeelie Mustafa became an Aggie double threat against Ohio this past week, averaging 9.5 yards per carry on the ground and totaling 180 return yards on six kickoffs, including a 91-yard kickoff return for a touchdown. Mustafa became the first Aggie since Taveon Rogers last season to return a kickoff for a score. It was also Mustafa's first career kickoff return for a touchdown.
Mustafa was named National Kickoff Returner of the Week by College Football Performance Awards.
On the season, Mustafa has rushed for 50 yards and averaged 24.4 yards a return on kickoffs, which is second in the WAC and is 38th in the nation.
Junaid Makes Good on First Start
Safety Dele Junaid made his first career start for the Crimson and White against Ohio. Junaid led the team with 15 tackles. It was the second time this season that an Aggie has recorded at least 15 tackles. The first was Trashaun Nixon against Sacramento State in the season opener. Versus UTEP, Junaid had four tackles.
Junaid played one season at Eastern Arizona at safety. He tallied 32 tackles in six games, including two interceptions, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. Junaid spent two seasons at Ole Miss, redshirting his freshman season. As a redshirt freshman, Junaid played primarily on special teams.
Chapman-Brown Bootin' the Ball
Punter Cayle Chapman-Brown debuted in the Crimson and White with a splash. Chapman-Brown kicked six punts for 303 yards, averaging 50.5 yards a punt, with a long of 63. He also recorded three punts over 50 yards and had three punts downed inside the Sacramento State 20-yard line.
On the season, Chapman-Brown has 18 punts for 775 yards, averaging 43.1 yards a punt, with four punts over 50 yards,
Chapman-Brown currently ranks third in punting averaging in the WAC and 33rd in the nation.
Chapman-Brown played one season at Snow College as the team's starting punter. He played in 12 games for Snow College, booting 53 punts for 2,296 yards, while averaging 43.3 yards a punt. Chapman-Brown's season-long was 68 yards. He was named a first team all-Western States Football League and an honorable mention NJCAA All-American. He ranks as the No. 3 punter in the country by Chris Sailer Kicking.
Ground Game Solid in Red Zone
Despite rushing for 101 yards as a team against Sacramento State, the Aggie run game was extremely effective in the red zone. NM State was 4-of-4 in the red zone with four rushing touchdowns. Running back Tiger Powell made his Aggie debut with a career-high two scores, while Robert Clay and Germi Morrison also punched it in as well. It was also the first rushing touchdown for Morrison in the Crimson and White.
The four scores on the ground was the most by any Aggie team since the 2004 season against UL-Lafayette (10/29), when the Aggies rushed for four touchdowns at Aggie Memorial Stadium.
Powell recorded his third score of the season on a 2-yard plunge against Ohio and his fourth on a 1-yard carry against UTEP. The Aggies have recorded a touchdown score in 7-of-9 trips in the red zone this season, six of which have come on the ground. NM State is 8-of-9 overall in red zone scoring.
Touchdown Catches over 50 Yards
The Aggies had three touchdown catches for 50-plus yards against Sacramento State. Wide receiver Austin Franklin caught touchdown passes for 53 and 84 yards, while Jerrel Brown caught his second career touchdown on a 50-yard pass.
All last season, the Aggies recorded a total of three touchdown passes over 50 yards.
Baca Kickin' it Out
Kicker Brock Baca recorded eight kickoffs against Sacramento State, with seven touchbacks. Baca averaged 64.8 yards a kick with just one return for 22 yards. Against Ohio, Baca had five kickoffs with three touchbacks. Baca hit two touchbacks against UTEP.
It was the first time since 2010 that the Aggies have recorded a single touchback. Since 2007, NM State has only recorded a total of 20 touchbacks and with just two games gone in the season the Aggies have recorded 10.
Savage's Return is an Immediate Impact
Senior defensive end Donte Savage is back for his final year as an Aggie after sitting the 2011 season. In the Aggies' first game of the 2012 season, Savage had three tackles, a tackle for a loss, a fumble recovery and a blocked PAT. He then followed that performance with three tackles, 1.5 tackles for a loss and his first sack of the season against Ohio. Savage was hard to handle at UTEP with six tackles, a quarterback hurry and a pass break-up.
As a junior, Savage played in 12 games for NM State in 2010, recording 36 tackles, 19 solo efforts, three sacks, two forced fumbles, two pass break-ups and a quarterback hurry. His best game of the season came against in-state rival New Mexico, when he recorded a season-high nine tackles, four for a loss, two forced fumbles, two pass break-ups and two sacks. He was named WAC Defensive Player of the Week.
For his career, Savage has 112 tackles, 23.5 for a loss, four forced fumbles, three recovered fumbles, a blocked PAT and a blocked punt. Savage looks to make his mark on the sack record book. He currently has 12 for his career and needs four to break into the top five all-time at NM State.
Walk-on Anaya a Valuable Player
Walk-on Desmond Anaya has worked his way into playing time for the Aggies. Anaya opened his Aggie career with six tackles, a tackle for a loss and a forced fumble against Sacramento State. Then against Ohio, Anaya intercepted a pass to go with his two tackles in the game. Versus UTEP, Anaya had five tackles, his first career sack, a tackle for a loss, a blocked PAT and a quarterback hurry.
He is the cousin of former Aggie Raul Anaya, who played for the Crimson and White from 1998-2000.
Head Coach DeWayne Walker reached a few milestones with the 49-19 win over Sacramento State to open the 2012 season. It was the first season-opening win for the Aggies in the Walker era and the largest margin of victory under Walker.
Stampler Looks to Move up Record Books
Place kicker Tyler Stampler has already etched his name in the record books at NM State but this season could be a record-breaking year for him. He currently ranks seventh in field goals made (24) and attempted (33), sixth in PATs made (66), sixth attempted (71) and eighth in PAT percentage (.929).
To start the 2012 season, Stampler nailed 11 straight PATs, helping the Aggies to the 49-19 win over Sacramento State. He then hit 3-of-3 on PATs and 1-of-2 on field goals against Ohio and 4-of-4 versus UTEP.
Stampler handled the field goal and extra point duties for the Aggies in 2011. On the season, Stampler was 34-of-38 on point after attempts, hitting his first 25 of the season and 7-of-12 on field goal attempts, with a long of 39 yards. He also scored 55 points on the season and has eclipsed the 100 point mark for his career.
The Lineman Chart
The offensive line is a position in the game of football that has no stats or glory but could possibly be one of the most important positions on the field. Let's take a look at the grade sheet for the NM State offensive line in week three of the season.
Tackle Davonte Wallace and guard Andrew Kerstne led the team with five knockdowns each against UTEP.
NM State Ranked Fourth by Coaches and Fifth by Media
The Aggie football team was selected to finish fourth in the 2012 Western Athletic Conference (WAC) football coaches poll and fifth in the media polls, released at the WAC Football Media Days. The Aggies received 22 points in the coaches' poll and 95 points in the media poll.
In 2011, the Aggies were picked to finish eighth by the coaches and in the media poll; NM State finished the 2011 campaign with a 4-9 overall record and 2-5 conference record. This year's ranking is the highest preseason ranking in both polls for NM State since joining the WAC in 2005.
In the media poll, Louisiana Tech received 193 points and 25 first-place votes from media members from around the nation. Utah State was picked second after garnering 164 points and the remaining three first-place votes. San Jose State finished third with 130 points while Idaho was selected fourth with 102 points followed by New Mexico State (95), Texas State (57) and UTSA (43).
In the coaches' poll, Louisiana Tech received 36 points from the seven WAC coaches. Utah State was in second with 31 points followed by San Jose State with 24. New Mexico State was selected fourth with 22 points followed by Idaho with 17 points. Newcomers Texas State (10) and UTSA (7) were sixth and seventh, respectively.
Additions to the Staff in 2012
The Aggies welcome four new coaches to the staff in 2012. Jerry McManus takes over as offensive coordinator for the departed Doug Martin, while David Elson will handle the defensive coordinator duties after the retirement of Dale Lindsey. Both McManus and Elson have several years at the college level as top assistants, while Elson holds head coaching experience.
Brad Bedell comes to NM State as the new offensive line coach, while Romeo Bandison will oversee the defensive line. Bedell and Bandison each have professional football playing experience, while Bandison has coached at top programs like Boise State and Colorado.
Honors in 2011
The New Mexico State football team received several honors after the 2011 football season both for on-the-field accomplishments and in the classroom. Taveon Rogers was selected as a third team Yahoo Sports and honorable mention Pro Football Weekly All-American teams. Five players including Rogers, Donyae Coleman, Davonte Wallace, Jonte Green and Kenny Turner all garnered All-WAC honors the most all-conference picks since joining the WAC. Valerian Ume-Ezeoke was also named to the Rivals.com Freshman All-WAC team. Defensive lineman David Niumatalolo was selected as CoSIDA Academic All-American, the team's first Academic All-American since 1999. The Aggies also landed 16 players on the Academic All-WAC list.
House, Green and Rogers Playing in the NFL
The Aggies currently have three players in the NFL. Defensive back Davon House who was drafted by the Green Bay Packers in the fourth round of the 2011 NFL Draft, becoming the first Aggies to be drafted since 2003. In 2012, defensive back Jonte Green was selected in the sixth round by the Detroit Lions, while wide receiver/kick returner Taveon Rogers was signed as a free agent by the Cincinnati Bengals. Rogers has since moved to defensive back.
Aggies on Twitter
The Aggie Athletics department has a Twitter account where media and fans can get all your in-game scores at www.twitter.com/nmstateaggies. Head Coach DeWayne Walker also has a twitter account for all the latest football news, as media and fans can go to www.twitter.com/dwalkerfootball.