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Football News

Aggie Football's 2016 Sun Belt Opponents Announced

NEW ORLEANS, LA - The Sun Belt Conference announced each members' conference opponents with each team playing four home and four road games. The Aggies' opponents are as follows:

(H) Texas State
(H) Georgia Southern
(H) UL Lafayette
(H) Appalachian State
(A) South Alabama
(A) Idaho
(A) Arkansas State
(A) Troy
(DNP) Georgia State
(DNP) UL Monroe

In addition to the conference games the Aggies will travel to Texas A&M (Oct. 29) and Kentucky (Sept. 17) as well as hosting New Mexico (Sept. 10) and traveling to UTEP for the annual Rio Grande Rivalry and Battle of I-10 rivalry games.

Joshua Bowen Named 2015 Pervis Atkins Spirit Award Recipient

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

LAS CRUCES, N.M. - NM State senior Joshua Bowen has been selected for the 2015 Pervis Atkins Spirit Award, announced head coach Doug Martin Thursday. Each season, Martin picks a player who personifies the Aggie spirit and who chooses to make a difference daily with his attitude and work ethic both on the field and in the classroom.

The award, created by Charlie Rogers and his former NM State teammates, was made to honor NM State football great and Hall of Famer Pervis Atkins, who played for the 1960 undefeated Aggies. It is for the one football player who has positively contributed the most to and for his team and who gives 110 percent whether it is on the practice field, the sideline or the playing field.   Continue Reading This Post >>

Aggie Football Signs Seven In Early Signing Period

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

LAS CRUCES, N.M. - Seven student-athletes have signed to play for the NM State football team, announced head coach Doug Martin on Wednesday. Junior college transfers Johnathan Boone, Jaleel Scott, Josh Aganon and Conner Cramer, as well as high school student-athletes Isaiah McIntyre, Jared Phipps and Austin Shaw will join the Aggies for the spring semester.

“We couldn’t be more excited to have these young men join the Aggie football family at mid semester,” said Martin. “All are outstanding young men and students, and their impact on the field will be felt immediately. Having them here for the spring semester and spring football practice is huge for us and addresses some of our most immediate needs in the 2016 recruiting class.”  Continue Reading This Post >>

Larry Rose III Named Third Team AP All-American

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

JACKSON, MS - NM State football's Larry Rose III was selected to the Associated Press All-America Third Team, the association announced. He was the only Sun Belt Conference student-athlete chosen for this prestigious honor.

Rose III is the seventh Aggie to be named to an Associated Press All-America team and the first since Karl Dean in 1974 and 1975. Dean was also selected to the Third Team.

Two running backs were chosen for each of the three teams. Rose III joins sophomore Royce Freeman from Oregon on the Third Team. This award comes after Rose III was named the Sun Belt Conference Offensive Student-Athlete of the Year and placed on the All-Sun Belt First Team last week.

Rose III led the conference with 1,651 rushing yards and had 14 touchdowns on 240 carries. He is the first back-to-back 1,000-yard rusher for the Aggies since Denvis Manns (1995-98). The sophomore broke the all-time single season rushing record for NM State with his 191 yards against UL-Lafayette during week 10 of the season. He finished the year ranked No. 6 in the all-time single season rushing records for the Sun Belt Conference.

The Fairfield, Texas native had three 200-yard rushing games and seven 100-yard rushing games. Rose III racked up a career-high 260 rushing yards over New Mexico, but the highlight of his season was a 212-yard, four touchdown rushing performance against Idaho on Oct. 31. He scored two touchdowns in the final 3:56 of the game to force overtime and then added one touchdown in overtime to lift the Aggies to victory.

In addition to his rushing yards, Rose III ranked first in the conference in all-purpose yards with 1,934. He racked up four 200-yard all-purpose games and nine 100-yard all-purpose games. Following spectacular performances against Idaho and Texas State, Rose III earned back-to-back SBC Offensive Student-Athlete of the Week awards.

Rose III also had 283 receiving yards and two touchdowns on 30 receptions. This included a flat-pattern pass, which he took 77-yards to the end zone at Texas State.  Continue Reading This Post >>

All-Conference Teams Selected, Rose III Named Offensive Student-Athlete Of The Year

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

NEW ORLEANS, LA - NM State football’s Larry Rose III has been named the Offensive Student-Athlete of the Year and earned a spot on the All-Sun Belt Conference First Team, the league office announced Wednesday. In addition, Terrill Hanks was selected for the All-Newcomer Team and Tyrian Taylor, Isaiah Folasa, Anthony McMeans and Stody Bradley received Honorable Mentions.

The head coach of each conference school, as well as one media representative from each institution, voted on the All-Sun Belt Teams and the Student-Athletes of the Year. Rose III is the first Aggie to earn Offensive Student-Athlete of the Year since Denvis Manns was named the Big West Offensive Most-Valuable Player in 1998. Prior to Manns, David Sprigs was named Missouri Valley Offensive Player of the Year in 1978.  Continue Reading This Post >>

Andrew Allen, Parker Davidson Earn Sun Belt Football Player Of The Week Honors

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

NEW ORLEANS, LA - After leading the NM State football team to its third victory in a row, quarterback Andrew Allen and kicker Parker Davidson were named SBC's Offensive Student-Athlete of the Week and Special Teams Student-Athlete of the Week, respectively, the conference office announced Monday.

This is the first time the Aggies have had two Student-Athletes of the Week in the same week since Sept. 8, 2014 when linebacker Rodney Butler and kicker Maxwell Johnson received the honors.

Allen's father was shot on Halloween night and passed away on Nov. 10. Allen was able to see his father before he passed. Saturday morning, the sophomore said his final goodbyes at a memorial service with his family and the sheriff's department where his father worked, then he traveled four hours to Lafayette, La. to guide the NM State football team to a 37-34 victory over the Ragin' Cajuns.  Continue Reading This Post >>

Larry Rose III Earns Second Consecutive Sun Belt Offensive Player Of The Week

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

NEW ORLEANS, LA - Larry Rose III had a stellar performance to lead his team to victory on Saturday, a feat which earned him the Sun Belt Conference’s Offensive Student-Athlete of the Week, announced the league office on Monday. This is the second week in a row Rose III has earned this honor.

Rose III led the offensive attack with 207 rushing yards, three touchdowns and a game-high 292 all-purpose yards. The sophomore had 31 carries and lost just five rushing yards on the night.

With the Aggies trailing by a four points in the fourth quarter, Rose III amassed two touchdowns in the final 10:12 of the game to help NM State win their second game in a row. His final touchdown of the night was a flat pattern pass from quarterback Nick Jeanty, which Rose III took 77 yards to the end zone.  Continue Reading This Post >>

Book Review: Magic In The Desert

If you are an Aggie football fan in any age group you’ve not doubt at least heard about the Aggies’ 1960 football team. It was not only New Mexico State’s only undefeated squad but is also the last team to go to a bowl game. Magic in the Desert is a book written by Dan Perry that chronicles that 1960 team. Perry died in 2013 before the project could be completed but with the help of his friends and fellow New Mexico State alumni Frank Thayer, Mike Waldner and Charlie Rogers. In a press release from New Mexico State Thayer, a professor emeritus in the NMSU Department of Journalism and Mass Communications in the College of Arts and Sciences said, “The three of us embraced the task of creating this book with the goal of realizing Dan Perry’s dream.”

I received an advance copy of the text from good friend Charlie Rogers and after reading the book the one thing that truly stands out about this book is that it truly was a labor of love. The sheer amount of research necessary to complete this book is overwhelming. As someone who covers New Mexico State athletics, I have firsthand experience at how difficult it can often times be to get historical data on New Mexico State teams. In Magic in the Desert Perry has gone back to the beginnings of Aggie football — 1894 — and in great detail has provided Aggie fans with a look into what life was like on campus back in those early days. Perry doesn’t just cover the football side of campus life in those early days, he also provides a look into the social aspect of what was then New Mexico A&M. It is a fascinating look on the early years of what would eventually become New Mexico State University.

Another interesting aspect of the book are many of the quotes and anecdotes that relate to the Aggie football program in particular and the challenges that the program has faced throughout the years, many of which still plague the program today.

A couple that stood out in particular to me, “If something isn’t done to attract athletes to the school and to hold them once they are here, we’d better forget about intercollegiate athletes – it’s no fun to be a loser year after year, even if it does build character – or else reconcile ourselves to degenerating to the New Mexico Conference.” That quote from the March 15th, 1946 edition of The Round Up illustrates that facilities and conference affiliation are something that have plagued the Aggies throughout history.

Also, facilities have apparently always been an issue for New Mexico State as illustrated by this passage from that same article, “Foremost is the matter of a stadium. Quesenberry Field should be Qusenberry Stadium, and the sooner the better ... a stadium can be used to provide the means for taking care of the athletes needed for future football and basketball teams.”

Also, as someone who has spent a fair amount of time around Aggie coaches and staff, I’ve heard numerous stories of things just “going wrong”, like buses not showing up at airports as was the case two years ago after the Aggie men’s basketball team had lost in the NCAA Tournament in Spokane, or not having enough charter planes at the airport to take the entire team on a road trip which was the case one season under Coach Hal Mumme when the team was scheduled to play at Idaho. There are no doubt plenty more stories like that from each coach in each of NMSU’s athletic programs. This particular anecdote from the book shows that, well, things have been going wrong for New Mexico State for a long time, “As if rebuilding a program was not tough enough, it was necessary to postpone spring practice in 1947 because 60 pairs of football shoes did not arrive as scheduled.” Stories like this make you wonder if New Mexico State football had been cursed from the get go and if the “Curse of Warren Woodson” were just additional piling on of that original curse.

Another story from 1949 illustrates that Aggie football has apparently always struggled with being able to pay its staff accordingly. ““I hate to lose Marsh, but I could not stand in his way for this chance at a better salary then we can pay,” Corley said.” Perry so eloquently stated following that quote, “When a high school assistant coach is paid more than any member of a college staff it is clear the college is dealing with financial restraints.” Adequate assistant coaching salaries are clearly something that is still ongoing even to this day.

With the 2015 football season just having started and the Aggies being fresh off a 34-32 loss in which the team missed TWO extra points, this anecdote from the 1959 season seems apropos, “The easy cruising came to halt in the third game of the season, a 28-27 loss at Tulsa. The difference between defeat and a tie was senior third-string quarterback Danny Villanueva’s missed point after touchdown (PAT) kick.” As any one who has followed Aggie football for any amount of time knows, having good place kickers has never been the Aggies’ strong suite (Danny Villanueva’s career notwithstanding).

There are other interesting tidbits in the book, not all of them related to the Aggies including this nugget, “… replacing Marv Levy, a surprise hire by Cal at the age of 35 after going 14-6 in two years at UNM. Levy was early in a career that would take him to four Super Bowls with the Buffalo Bills…” I’m sure that somewhere along the line I’d been told that Marv Levy was once the coach at our rival UNM but it was still a little bit of a shock when I read that sentence.

In its entirety this book covers New Mexico State football from its beginnings in 1894 all the way through present day with plenty of history, backstory, stats, quotes and stories from many sources including The Round Up, The Las Cruces Sun-News and the El Paso Times and the book dedicates a significant portion obviously to the 1960 football team with each game from that season chronicled.

Overall it is a fascinating read for any Aggie football fan and really any New Mexico State alumnus. As we noted before, Perry not only touches on Aggie football’s early beginnings but also New Mexico State’s early beginnings as in 1894 the university was just six years old. Kudos to all involved in producing this book, as we mentioned before, it is clearly a labor of love by four Aggie alumni and well deserving of your time.

There will be a book signing this Saturday, September 19th at COAS Books located on 317 N Main Street in Las Cruces.

For more information, visit . All profits from the sale of “Magic in the Desert” will go to the Daniel Perry Endowment at NMSU.

Also, check out our feature story on Pervis Atkins from 2008: The Trip of a Lifetime  Continue Reading This Post >>

Jaden Wright Named Sun Belt Defensive Player Of The Week

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

LAS CRUCES, N.M. - Following a stellar defensive performance against Georgia State last Saturday, defensive back Jaden Wright has been selected as this week’s Sun Belt Defensive Student-Athlete of the Week as announced by the league office on Monday.

Each week, members of the media select one offensive player, one defensive player and one special teams player for this honor for their effort on the field. In addition to Wright earning Defensive Student-Athlete of the Week, Georgia Southern’s Matt Breida and Troy’s Teddy Ruben were chosen as the Offensive and Special Teams Student-Athletes of the Week, respectively.  Continue Reading This Post >>

Aggie Football Captains Named

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

LAS CRUCES, N.M. - The 2015 NM State football team captains have been chosen as announced by head coach Doug Martin on Saturday. Linebacker Rodney Butler, defensive lineman Alex Trujillo, linebacker Robert Wagner, wide receiver Teldrick Morgan and offensive lineman Andy Cunningham have been selected by the coaching staff to lead the Aggies this season.

During the 2014 season, Butler led the Aggies with 119 tackles, which included 58 unassisted and 61 assisted tackles to earn a Second Team All-Sun Belt selection. Butler collected eight games with double-digit tackles and had a career-high 17 tackles at UTEP on Sept. 13.

Trujillo played in five games during the 2014 season and started against UTEP. The redshirt senior amassed 10 tackles and one tackle for loss during his five games.  Continue Reading This Post >>