Aggies to Play the Hawai'i Warriors, Saturday
The New Mexico State football team (2-9, 1-6) will host the Hawai'i Warriors (8-3, 6-1) Saturday, Nov. 27 at Aggie Memorial Stadium, beginning at 1:00 p.m. In the season finale, the Aggies will honor 17 seniors as they put on their pads and don the Crimson & White for the final time.
The game will be television on ESPN Regional with play-by-play man Trey Bender and color analyst Jay Taylor bringing you all the action.
You can listen to all the action with the 'Voice of the Aggies' Jack Nixon and color analyst Jason Scott beginning at 1 p.m. on KGRT 104 FM. Also catch the action in Spanish with Martin Cortez and Bob Sherman on Vista 98.7 FM. Cuyler Frank will also broadcast the game in Navajo from Aggie Memorial Stadium on KNDN 960 AM (Farmington) and KGAK 1330 AM (Gallup).
Aggies and Warriors Meet for the Seventh Time
The Aggies and Warriors have met just six times prior to this season, but Saturday's game will be the third game between the two schools in Las Cruces. Hawai'i currently leads the all-time series, 6-0 and has beaten NM State by an average of 18 points per game in the six contests. The Aggies and Warriors last met in 2009 as the Aggies traveled Hawai'i for the fourth time in the program's history falling 24-6. Before joining the WAC in 2005, NM State and Hawai'i had not met since Nov. 11, 1978 in Honolulu, when the Warriors won the inaugural game of the series, 35-20.
Scouting the Warriors
This season the Warriors have been a team that lives by the pass over their 11 games, averaging 391.2 yards through the air and just 85.8 yards on the ground. Hawai'i has outscored its opponents 36.5 points per game to 22.7 this season. With an 8-3 record overall and 6-1 in the WAC, the Warriors have won eight of their last nine games, which includes three on the road.
Individually for Hawai'i, quarterback Bryant Moniz has thrown for 4,934 yards and 28 touchdowns in 11 games for the Warriors, averaging 357.6 yards in the air. Alex Green leads the running attack for Hawai'i. Green is averaging 64.1 yards a game with 13 touchdowns. Greg Salas has caught 91 passes for 1,390 yards and nine touchdowns this season to lead the Hawai'i wide receivers, while Kealoha Pilares has 73 receptions for 1,099 yards and 13 touchdowns.
Corey Paredes leads the Warriors' defense with 125 tackles on the season, followed by Mana Silva with 71.
Last Season against Hawai'i
The New Mexico State Aggies fell to the Hawai'i Warriors 24-6 in Honolulu, Hawai'i, Saturday night. NM State moves to 3-7 overall and 1-4 in conference play, while the Warriors improve to 4-6 on the season and 2-5 in conference.
As a team the Aggies tallied 244 yards of total offense on the night, while allowing 485 yards to the Warriors, just 184 in the second half. Jeff Fleming threw for 111 yards on 12-of-21 passing and two interceptions, while Marcus Allen led the receiving corps with four catches for 42 yards. Tonny Glynn led the running attack with 74 yards, while Chris Buckner tallied a career-high 16 tackles on the night.
Defensive back Davon House recorded his second touchdown of the season with a 58-yard interception return, breaking the school record for interception return yardage in the process. House also tied the school record for most interception touchdown returns for a career. He now had two in his career.
The Warriors started with the ball in the second half and the Aggies defense forced a Hawai'i punt, giving the ball back to the offense. But the Aggie offense was stopped by the Warriors and forced to punt, as the score remained 17-0 with 10:22 to go in the third quarter.
Donyae Coleman's first career sack and a false start on Hawai'i made it third and long for the Warriors. Hawai'i could not convert and were forced to punt. The Aggies would muff the punt and recover back at their own 6-yard line. The Aggies would move the ball into Hawai'i territory on a Tonny Glynn, 20-yard line run. A holding penalty forced the Aggies into a throwing situation. Fleming would then throw his second interception of the game, giving the Warriors the ball back with just over two minutes to play in the third quarter.
On the Warriors second play of their next drive, Davon House recorded his third interception of the season, returning the ball 58 yards for a touchdown, pulling the Aggies with nine points at 17-6, after a missed extra point attempt. House's 58 yard return for a touchdown is the second of his career. It also broke the school record for interception return yardage in a career. He now has 271 interception return yards for his career.
On the ensuring kick off, Hawai'i marched the ball down the field in nine plays, scoring on a 12-yard pass play, giving the Warriors a 24-6 lead with 11:08 left in the game.
Neither the Aggies nor the Warriors could put anymore points on the board over the last 11 minutes of the game as Hawai'i was on top 24-6 as time expired.
Last Time against Hawai'i in Las Cruces
Ryan Mouton intercepted a pass by Chase Holbrook in the second quarter and ran for a 91-yard touchdown that handed Hawaii a 13-point advantage over New Mexico State and the Warriors continued to a 42-30 victory in Aggie Memorial Stadium.
Hawai'i neutralized early offensive attacks by NM State, and the Warriors claimed their first lead in the second quarter with a 1-yard touchdown rush by quarterback Greg Alexander for a 21-14 spread that NM State never closed.
Hawai'i secured the win late in the third quarter with a 3-yard touchdown rush by Daniel Libre that put the Warriors up 42-24.
Libre shattered his rushing average of 34.1 yards per game as he finished with 88 yards and two touchdowns.
The NM State offense relied on Chris Williams, who contributed three touchdowns, including an 83-yard third quarter touchdown catch-and-run, as he tied his career-high 221 yards receiving.
Williams opened the game with an 84-yard touchdown catch less than one minute into the game followed by a 23-yard scoring catch immediately after Hawaii's Aaron Bain dropped a punt and NM State recovered.
Bain kept the score close between Williams' pair of scoring drives with a 17-yard touchdown catch in the first quarter.
A 29-yard NM State field goal by Kyle Hughes and a 6-yard Hawaii touchdown catch by Kealoha Pilares brought the halftime score to 35-17.
Alexander and Holbrook anchored the offensive shootout as Alexander went 26-for-32 and 288 yards passing and two touchdowns, and Holbrook completed 24 of 38 for 394 yards and four touchdowns.
The defeat marked NM State's fourth consecutive conference loss.
Roger Not just a Return Man
All season long wide receiver Taveon Rogers has been the Aggies biggest threat on special teams as a kick off returner but over the last five games of the season he has been a bright spot on the offensive side of the ball as well. Over the last five games, Rogers has caught 13 passes for 218 yards and two touchdowns.
Against Nevada this past weekend, Rogers grabbed four passes for 94 yards, a season-high in yardage. He also caught his second pass of the season over 40 yards.
On the season, Rogers has caught 15 passes for 258 yards and two touchdowns.
Adolpho has a Good Night
Linebacker B.J. Adolpho had a strong night against Nevada, recording his second career sack as an Aggie. He tallied six tackles and two tackles for a loss as well.
Adolpho's career-high in tackles came against LA Tech as he tallied 13 tackles. He has three games this season with nine tackles or more.
On the season, Adolpho has 72 tackles, 7.5 tackles for a loss, two sacks, two pass break ups and two quarterback hurries.
The First Seven versus the Last Four
Despite a 1-3 record over the last four games of the season the Aggies have some big differences in several statistical categories. Let's take a look at some of those differences:
Category First Seven Last Four
Time of Possession 29:20 34:22
Points Allowed 268 147
Net Punting 32.7 35.7
Field Goals 6-8 9-10
3rd Down Conv. 28% 34%
Passing Yards/Game 141.1 221.5
Rushing Yards/Game 128.0 143.5
Penalties Yards/Game 67.3 56.2
Lee Continues to be a Threat for the Aggies
Coming into the season, Todd Lee had caught just 34 passes for 315 yards and a touchdown. This season, Lee has caught 17 passes for 230 yards and a team leading three touchdowns.
Against LA Tech two weeks ago, Lee caught three passes for a career-high 73 yards and a career-long touchdown catch for 30 yards. Over the last four games, Lee has 10 catches for 134 yards and two touchdowns.
For his career, Lee has recorded 53 receptions for 545 yards and four touchdowns.
Boyblue finds the End Zone
Down 24-10 early in the third quarter against LA Tech two weeks ago, linebacker Boyblue Aoelua intercepted his first career pass. But it didn't stop there as Aoelua returned that interception 41 yards for his first career touchdown and the Aggies' first defensive touchdown of the 2010 season.
It marks the second straight year that NM State had scored a defensive touchdown against LA Tech. In 2009, Davon House returned a fumble for a touchdown in Ruston.
On the season, Aoelua is second on the team in tackles with 70, while recording six tackles for a loss of six yards, a pass break up, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery to go along with his interception and touchdown.
For his career, Aoelua has 78 tackles, two fumble recoveries; two pass break ups, an interception and a forced fumble.
Manley an Impressive Freshman
True freshman Andrew Manley has been impressive during his three starts this season. He has thrown for 437 yards on 41-of-87 passing and a touchdown.
In his second career start for the Aggies, freshman Andrew Manley recorded career highs in passing yards (216), attempts (40), completions (20) and rushing yards (27). He also threw his first-career touchdown - a 30-yard strike to Todd Lee in the second quarter against LA Tech. Manley was also 6-for-6 passing on that scoring drive.
On the season, Manley has thrown for 469 yards on 43-of-86 passing and four interceptions. He has completed 50 percent of his pass attempts.
Nelson Making the Most of his Final Season with NM State
Tight end Kyle Nelson has been a steady target for the NM State quarterback position this season. Nelson has caught at least one pass in all 11 games this season, and at least three receptions in seven games this year. Over the last four games, Nelson has 15 receptions for 148 yards and a touchdown.
Against LA Tech, Nelson recorded a season-high six passes for 47 yards. On the season, Nelson has 32 receptions for 285 yards.
For his career, Nelson has 61 catches for 516 yards and two touchdowns.
Stampler on a Roll
Tyler Stampler hit field goals of 39 and 47 yards against Nevada this past weekend. He has now hit nine of his last 10 attempts.
He hit two 40-plus yard field goals against Utah State, hitting a career-long of 48 yards late in the fourth quarter after breaking his career long record earlier in the game with a 46-yard make. He went 3-for-3 on field goal attempts for the Aggies in their 29-27 win over San Jose State. He made field goals of 42, 25 and 43 yards. He has now hit five field goals of 39 yards or more this season.
Stampler was named WAC Special Teams Player of the Week for the second time this season and Place Kicker Performer of the Week by CollegeFootballPerformance.com for his performance against San Jose State.
On the season, Stampler is 15-of-18 on field goal attempts to lead the WAC in percentage this season and 15-of-16 on PAT's, hitting 11 straight PAT's and 13 of his last 15 field goal attempts. He also leads the team in scoring with 54 points on the year.
Rushing the Ball is a Team Effort
The Aggie offense is spreading the ball around this season on the ground. NM State has 1,470 yards rushing and six touchdowns this season with 14 different Aggies with at least one rushing attempt. At this point last season, the Aggies had 13 players with at least one rushing attempt but had 1,378 yards on the ground and eight touchdowns.
Kenny Turner leads the rushing attack with 105 carries for 409 yards and two touchdowns, while fellow running back Seth Smith has 378 yards on the ground and two touchdowns as well. Sophomore Robert Clay added the Aggies' first 100-yard rushing game against LA Tech. Clay is fourth on the team with 207 yards this season. Eight of the 14 players with a rushing attempt are not running backs.
Rogers Ranks First as a Return Specialist
Junior wide receiver/kick returner Taveon Rogers now ranks first all-time in kick return yardage in a season and is first all-time for number of returns in a season.
Rogers is averaging 26.6 yards per kick return this season on 46 returns for the Aggies. He currently ranks second in the WAC and 25th in the nation. His long for the year is 54 yards versus Kansas.
Rogers recorded six kickoff returns against Kansas, totaling 219 yards - a new school record for the Aggies. His six returns tied a school record for the most kickoff returns in a game. Rogers had three returns of 40-plus yards, including a career-long of 54 yards. His 219 yards broke Tony Lukins' record from 2001 (189 yards).
He would tie his own record against No. 3 Boise State with six kickoff returns for 136 yards. On the season, Rogers leads the team in all-purpose yards with 1,537. He is fourth in the WAC in all-purpose yards and 27th in the nation.
The Aggies' primary kick returner has averaged at least 20 yards per return for 13 consecutive seasons.
Freshmen with Time
The Aggies have relied heavily on incoming freshmen this season. In fact, the Aggies have played nine true freshmen this season, starting seven of them over 10 games. The Aggies rank 24th in the nation among schools with the most-true freshmen played.
Quarterback Andrew Manley, defensive backs Darien Johnson and George Callender, offensive lineman Davonte Wallace and defensive lineman Augafa Vaaulu have all made starts for NM State this season.
Other true freshmen with playing time include linebacker Anthony Joyner, Dylan Davis and wide receiver Jerrel Brown.
Rogers, Allen, House and Coleman Named to Phil Steele Midseason All-WAC Team
Phil Steele has released his Midseason all‑WAC Team. Phil Steele's College Football Preview is one of the nation's most informative preseason football magazines and has always released Preseason, Midseason and Postseason All-American teams as well as All-Conference teams.
Kick returner Taveon Rogers was named to the first team, while wide receiver Marcus Allen, cornerback Davon House and safety Donyae Coleman earned third team honors.
Niumatalolo Named to the ESPN Academic All-District VI First Team
New Mexico State junior defensive lineman David Niumatalolo was named to the ESPN Academic All-District VI first team, the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).
Niumatalolo, a member of the Aggie football team, now qualifies for the All-America honor, which will be released later this month. A native of Kahuku, Hawai'i, Niumatalolo has a 4.0 G.P.A. in biology.
This season, Niumatalolo has played in 11 games for the Aggies recording 19 tackles, four tackles for a loss of five yards, a quarterback hurry and a fumble recovery.
House Invited to the 2011 Senior Bowl
Senior defensive back Davon House has been invited to participate in the 2011 Senior Bowl, in Mobile, Ala. The event is scheduled for Jan. 29, 2011 at Ladd-Peebles Stadium and will be televised on the NFL Network.
House becomes the fifth player in school history to be named to the Senior Bowl. Other Aggies to have played in the Senior Bowl are Jim Bohl ('67), Jim Germany ('75), Walt Williams ('77) and Andre Anderson ('78).
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 seven of the season.
Aundre McGaskey leads the team with 71 knockdowns, while the offensive line is fourth in the WAC in sacks allowed with 16.