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NCAA FB: New Mexico St. Aggies Preview
by Matt Fargo - 06/09/2011
#120 New Mexico St. Aggies
Offensive Starters Returning…7
Defensive Starters Returning…7
Looking Back… New Mexico St. enters a new season with new expectations but in reality, it is going to be another long season in Las Cruces. The Aggies went 2-10 a season ago including 1-7 in the WAC and that made it six straight seasons that New Mexico St. has won two games or fewer against FBS teams. The good news is that head coach DeWayne Walker is in his third season and he is now coaching the kids that he recruited but another year of futility could show Walker the door with an early exit.
Statistical Recap… The Aggies were dreadful on both sides of the ball last season as they finished 112th in total offense with 296.5 ypg and 112th in total defense with 453.3 ypg. They were even worse in scoring as they averaged 15.7 ppg while allowing 39.5 ppg, 117th and 115th in the nation respectively and they were one of only five teams in the country outscored by more than three touchdowns per game. All of the numbers should get better based on the fact there is little room to get much worse.
Strengths… As mentioned, Walker is now coaching his players and not the leftovers from former coach Hal Mumme and that can make a big difference. The Aggies bring back a majority of starters on both sides of the ball so there is chemistry heading into the season. The offensive line returns four starters plus gets senior Sioeli Fakalata back who missed nearly all of last year after a season ending injury in Week One.
Weaknesses…. Where to begin? If the offense wasn't bad enough with a lack of playmakers, this season the Aggies will have to learn a new scheme as former Kent head coach Doug Martin takes over as offensive coordinator. Getting pressure on the quarterback was non-existent last season as New Mexico St. registered only nine sacks and 42 tackles for losses, both second to last in the country.
Schedule… The good news is that the Aggies do not have to play Boise St., which moved to the MWC, as they were throttled by a combined score of 208-7 over the last four years. They face Ohio at home in the season opener and a win there could provide huge confidence going forward. New Mexico St. has tough road games at Minnesota, Hawaii, Georgia and BYU and the two most winnable games, against San Jose St. and New Mexico, are on the road as well.
At The Window… The Aggies have not shown a profit since 2006-07 as they have gone 19-28 ATS the last four years. Because of such low expectations, we could see some early value in their inflated spreads.
Outlook… There has not been much progress in this program for the last few years and a step up this season is unlikely. The Aggies two wins last year came by an average of 2.0 ppg while the 10 losses were by 28.8 ppg and that differential is too much to be made up in one year. If the Aggies can win three games, it will be a successful season but do not count on much more than that.