The Daily Aggie :: 08/02/10

We're just outside of a month before college football season kicks off for New Mexico State. Last week the fall camp dates were announced.

Teddy Feinberg of the Las Cruces Sun-News has a couple of recruiting items regarding a wide receiver who will play in the fall and a quarterback who will likely be for the 2011 class.

Joey Zager of previews the 2010 Aggies while KTVB in Boise has video interviews with the Aggies who were at WAC Football Preview last week talking about what makes Boise State so good.

And also this morning Davon House was named to the 2010 Jim Thorpe Award watch list.

The men's basketball team is also making news as they return to the practice court before their trip to Canada.

In addition to his story in the Sun-News, Jason Groves also blogged about what the Aggies are going to be looking for from this trip to Canada.

On to today's links...  Continue Reading This Post >>

Davon House Named To Jim Thorpe Watch List

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK - The 2010 Jim Thorpe Award preseason “watch list” announced today includes 35 of the nation’s best defensive backs as the leading candidates for this year’s trophy, including New Mexico State’s senior defensive back Davon House. House becomes the first defensive back at NM State to be named to the Jim Thorpe Award preseason watch list.

In 2009, House, a native of Palmdale, Calif., was named a first team All-WAC selection, after leading the league and the Aggies in passes defended and interceptions. House also broke the school record for most interception return yards for a career. He tallied 68 tackles on the season and three interceptions. House recorded two touchdowns on the year, one interception return for a touchdown against Hawai’i (11/14) and the other a fumble recovery and return for a touchdown at Louisiana Tech (10/17). With his fumble return and interception return for touchdowns, House became the first Aggie player to do both during a single season since Gary Jessie accomplished this feat back in the mid-1990s. House also proved to be in the right place at the right time for interceptions in his career. He has nine to his name, which ranks him ninth all-time at NM State. With the 58-yard interception return against Hawai’i, House broke the school record for interception return yardage held for 28 years by James Ferebee (1978-81). House now has 271 interception return yards. At San Diego State (10/3), House grabbed seven tackles and his first interception of the season. Two games later, at Louisiana Tech, House scooped up a fumble and returned it 38 yards for his first career fumble return for a touchdown. Against Hawai’i, House recorded his second interception of the season, returning it 58 yards for his second touchdown of the season. He also broke the school record for interception return yardage for a career with that interception return. At Boise State (12/5), House tallied a career-high nine tackles including a career-high four pass break-ups. House was also named a 2009 Phil Steele’s Postseason All-WAC selection.

The Thorpe Award is one of college football’s most sought after and prestigious awards. It is named after history’s greatest all-around athlete, a man who excelled as a running back, passer and kicker on offense, but also was an awesome defensive back. Recognized in the Pro Football Hall of Fame simply as “The Legend”, Thorpe also played professional baseball and won Olympic gold medals in the decathlon and pentathlon.

The Jim Thorpe Award “watch list” is determined by analysis of the pre-season All-American teams listed in at least six pre-season college football annual magazines. Four points are awarded for first team, three points for second team, two points for third and one point for honorable mentions. This procedure determines approximately 30-40 players on the pre-season watch list. This list is not final and players who have outstanding seasons are added as the season progresses.  Continue Reading This Post >>

Aggie Soccer Kick-Off Party On The Patio, August 12th

As promised, I am writing to update you with our plans for our Aggie Soccer Kick-off Party on the Patio. We will be getting together at 6:30PM on August 12, 2010 at The Game Sports Bar and Grill. This will be an amazing opportunity for you to have a fun evening with everyone in our program. All coaches and players will be in attendance and look forward to the opportunity to get to know you better and for you to get to know us a better. Everyone is welcome, we will have schedule posters on hand and sharpies ready for autographs with the kids (and adults).

This will not be your average event, we are looking to have a fun evening with our fans or as we call them in soccer, our supporters. This event will expose our new players to how great the fans of Las Cruces are. I think back to one of our seniors last year, Katie Graul (Transfer Goalkeeper, First Team All-WAC), in a conversation after one of our games, she explained to all of our young players just how special it is to play here at New Mexico State and to play in Las Cruces, NM. She had played three years of collegiate soccer at other schools and had never seen the support you provided for us. She simply looked at me and asked if she could say something, I responded of course, this was her address to the team....

"Guys, look around, this is amazing, can you believe you are playing women's college soccer in front of this many people, awesome, just awesome guys!"

I wanted to reach out and personally invite you to our Aggie Soccer Kick-Off Party on the Patio. You support means so much not only to our program, but also to me personally. Thank you for your continued support of our program, see you on the 12th, come help us start this season off right!  Continue Reading This Post >>

Aggie Soccer Supporters, Save These Dates

Well can you believe that another school year is about to begin and our soccer student-athletes arrive on campus next week for their second season. To be perfectly honest, the first 20 months of my head coaching career have been an absolute whirlwind. The process of building this program is going extremely well so I just wanted to touch base personally and thank you for all of the support you have shown us.

We have an exciting season ahead of us. The successes of our first year behind us, we will build upon those this coming season. You will see many of the same values in place, but I believe you will see better and more attacking soccer this year. Our kids will continue to work harder, be more passionate, and be more committed than any team on our schedule. These core values in our program will remain constant as we continue to grow this program into a force to be reckoned with in the WAC, Southwest Region, and ultimately on the National Stage.  Continue Reading This Post >>

Aggies Announce 2010-11 Swimming And Diving Schedule

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

LAS CRUCES, N.M. - New Mexico State swimming and diving head coach Rick Pratt and the Aggies hope to build on a program-best runner-up finish at the 2010 WAC Championships and are looking ahead to the 2010-11 season.

"Our schedule came out great and gives us several challenges, which will help us to prepare for San Antonio," Pratt said. "Our first home meet with Boise State and North Texas is a great way to start."

This year's slate includes three home meets, a Pac-10 opponent and a return trip to the UNLV Invitational. The Aggies open the season at home against Boise State and North Texas (Oct. 22-23).

NM State has a pair of meets on the first road trip of the year as the Aggies face Washington State (Nov. 5) in Pullman, Wash., and Idaho (Nov. 6) in Moscow, Idaho.

After the divers compete at the Arizona Diving Invitational (Nov. 19-21) in Tucson, Ariz., NM State travels to Flagstaff, Ariz., for a dual meet with WAC foe Northern Arizona (Dec. 4).

Following a two-year hiatus, the Aggies return to the UNLV Invitational (Dec. 11-13) in Las Vegas, Nev. NM State meets Northern Colorado (Jan. 21) in Greeley, Colo., and Colorado State (Jan. 22) in Fort Collins, Colo., after the holiday break. The Aggies then host in-state rival New Mexico (Feb. 5) in the regular season finale and travel to San Antonio, Texas for the WAC Championship (Feb. 23-26).

"I am excited about returning to the UNLV Invitational, which is our first invite in several years and to finish with UNM will be an exciting way to head into taper," Pratt said. "We will have to be tough racing through our heavy training regiment and we’ll have to come together to pull out wins."

"Overall, I am excited for another season and to see how our freshmen and hard working upperclassmen progress."

NM State returns 18 swimmers and a diver and adds four swimmers and two divers to the mix in 2010-11.   Continue Reading This Post >>

Aggie Football To Open Fall Camp On August 11th

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

LAS CRUCES, N.M. - The New Mexico State football team opens its 2010 fall camp, Wednesday, Aug. 11, at the football practice field beginning at 3:00 p.m. Practices are open to the public. The first five days of camp are the NCAA mandated five-day acclimation period before the Aggies jump right into two-a-day practices on Aug. 16th.

The Aggies' annual media day in Las Cruces is held Aug. 12 at 11:00 p.m., in the football meeting rooms, located on the north end of the stadium.

NM State opens up its 2010 season, Sept. 11, against San Diego State in Aggie Memorial Stadium. Kickoff is set for 6:00 p.m. Season tickets are available through the New Mexico State ticket office and they can be purchased in person at the Pan American Center ticket office or over the phone by calling 575-646-1420.  Continue Reading This Post >>

The Daily Aggie :: 07/28/10

The WAC Football Preview has wrapped and the NM State athletic website has some photos of the three Aggies in attendance, Davon House, Seth Smith and Coach Walker.

The biggest story out of the WAC Football Preview yesterday was the Holy Potato War that has been started between Idaho and Boise State (because Boise State doesn't want to continue the series after this season). Boise State head coach Chris Petersen lobbed a couple grenades on Monday when he said, "Why would we (go to Moscow)? I don't think our fans even like to go up there. Most of Idaho's fans are in Boise anyway.''

Then Boise State President Bob Kustra fanned the flames yesterday [excerpt from an Idaho Statesman article on the whole thing]:
Kustra said it's a "cultural issue,'' pointing out an article last week in the Argonaut, the University of Idaho student newspaper. The headline of the article was, "Who do we hate?''

"This is a great example of why my wife and I no longer travel to Moscow games,'' Kustra said. "It's a culture that is nasty, inebriated and civilly doesn't give our fans the respect that any fan should expect when visiting an away team. ... I don't think at Boise State you're going to find that, so for me personally, when I read what Pete said I knew, I knew.

"I've seen rivalries all over America, Oklahoma-Oklahoma State, Texas-Texas A&M, Kansas-Kansas State, but you can go inside those rivalries and you'll find all kinds of slams and digs and whatever, but I've never seen the nastiness aimed at the quality of our academic program that I find here in Idaho from the University of Idaho Vandals and as long as that goes on, why would I want to encourage a game where people don't know how to act like grownups?''

You can read the article in question from the Idaho student paper here.

It should be an interesting final season with Boise State in the WAC... Boise State invades Las Cruces on Saturday, October 2nd, one week before the Aggies take on their own in-state rival, New Mexico.

On to today's links...  Continue Reading This Post >>

The Daily Aggie :: 07/27/10

The 2010 WAC football media preview is underway in Salt Lake City. Yesterday the WAC's preseason polls were released and the Aggies were picked to finish 8th by both the coaches and media.

Aggie head coach DeWayne Walker was the first coach to address the media on day two. You can view his press conference here.

One other item of note coming out of the press conferences yesterday was the change to the WAC basketball tournament format. It's interesting that this change was announced because we asked Commissioner Benson about it less than a month ago in our interview with him and at that time he expected the current format to continue through the next two seasons. The new format places more of an emphasis on the regular season and rewards the top two seeds with byes all the way to the semifinals. It is the same format that is currently used by the West Coast Conference. One of the other benefits to the new format is that it also protects the two higher seeds from playing against the 7-seed and 8-seed and thereby not lowering their RPI (unless of course the 7-seed or 8-seed pulls upsets and makes it to the semifinals). Higher RPI could mean a higher seed in the NCAA tournament for the automatic qualifier. A higher RPI could also mean the difference between an at-large bid in the NCAA tournament and an NIT bid for a second team from the WAC.

On to today's links...  Continue Reading This Post >>

Aggie Football Picked To Finish Eighth By WAC Coaches And Media In Preseason Polls

The New Mexico State football team was picked to finish eighth by the WAC coaches and media in the 2010 WAC Preseason football polls which were released today at the WAC Football Media Preview.

Boise State was picked to finish first in both polls, garnering eight of the nine first-place votes in the coaches' poll (coaches are not allowed to vote their own teams first). The Broncos also received 42 of the 43 first-place votes in the media poll. Nevada received two first-place votes, one in the coaches' poll and one in the media poll.

Coaches poll

1. Boise State (8), 64
2. Nevada (1), 55
3. Fresno State, 50
4. Utah State, 37
5. Hawaii, 36
6. Idaho, 33
7. Louisiana Tech, 26
8. New Mexico State, 14
9. San Jose State 9

Media poll
1. Boise State (42), 386
2. Nevada (1), 333
3. Fresno State, 300
4. Idaho, 207
5. Louisiana Tech, 200
6. Utah State, 196
7. Hawaii, 166
8. New Mexico State, 81
9. San Jose State 66

The Daily Aggie :: 07/22/10

Andy Katz has an interesting story on San Diego State's men's basketball program and Steve Fisher's difficulty scheduling teams to play. There are a few really good nuggets in there including a great example of the domino effect of scheduling.

SDSU had been projected to play in an exempt tournament in Las Vegas, however, when head coach Steve Fisher was told his team would not be included, he "scrambled" to get into the CBE Classic. Because he got into the CBE classic, he had to postpone a road game at Arizona on November 16th. Arizona's head coach Sean Miller then filled that spot with... that's right, New Mexico State (two days later on November 18th). The interesting thing is that because the Aggies were able to get a home-and-home with Arizona, it killed a home-and-home series with San Diego State.

"I told Sean to pick any date he wants but he got Marvin Menzies [the head coach at New Mexico State] to take our place,'' Fisher said. "We were supposed to play Marvin in a home-and-home, but he said he got Arizona coming back to his place in a year so how could he turn that down? So we lost two games in the process of losing the Vegas event. We lost games against Arizona and New Mexico State.''

So the scheduling dominoes fell in the Aggies' favor all because of something completely unrelated to them (we can all thank the Las Vegas exempt tournament for the home-and-home with Arizona).

The other nugget in the article is the amount of money that teams pay out for guarantee games (games against opponents like Alcorn State, Prairie View A&M, etc.) San Diego State is only able to pay $65,000 while NM State's rivals down I-10, UTEP, can pay $95,000. We'd be interested to find out how much New Mexico State offers for guarantee games.

Aggie head football coach DeWayne Walker was a guest this morning on News New Mexico to talk about the expectations for the upcoming season. You can listen to the entire hour-long interview here.

Teddy Feinberg of the Las Cruces Sun-News has a video interview with running back Kenny Turner on his expectations for himself.

Our friends at One Bronco Nation Under God reveal their WAC ballot, including picking Davon House for the WAC's Defensive Player of the Year.

Rock Chalk Talk previews the Aggies. NM State travels to Lawrence, KS to take on the Jayhawks on Saturday, September 25th.

Finally, we came across this video message from Aggie men's basketball head coach Marvin Menzies thanking the 6th Man fundraising group. It also includes a highlight video from last season.  Continue Reading This Post >>