Saturday's game between New Mexico State and UTEP is the 91st meeting between the two schools. The game is scheduled for a 6 p.m. (MT) start at Aggie Memorial Stadium, Sept. 14 in Las Cruces. This season NM State is sitting at 0-2 while the Miners are 0-1, 0-0.
The Miners have won seven of the last 10 meetings between the two schools, winning the last four games. The Aggies last win in the series was in 2008 in El Paso. NM State last won at home in 2007, a 29-24 final.
The game will be televised live on AggieVision, as Glen Cerny (Play-by-Play) and Danny Knee (Analyst) bring you all the action from the television booth. The game will be on live locally on Comcast in New Mexico, KASY (Albuquerque), CSN-Houston (9/15 at 7 a.m.) and Altitude2.
You can listen to all the action with the ‘Voice of the Aggies’ Jack Nixon and color analyst Preston Williams beginning at 5 p.m. on KGRT 104 FM. Also catch the action in Spanish with Bob Sherman and Sal Betancourt on Vista 98.7 FM.
New Mexico State-UTEP Rivalry
The Aggie football team renews the program’s second longest rivalry with the Miners of Texas-El Paso, Sept. 14, at Aggie Memorial Stadium. The game will mark the 91st meeting between the Miners and Aggies with UTEP leading the series, 53-35-2. This will be just the 11th meeting between the two rivals in the last 12 years after the two schools played every year from 1935 to 2000. The series took a break in 2001 and 2003.
Doug Martin and Sean Kuglar will square off for the first time as head coaches. Last season the Aggies fell to UTEP, 16-10 in Las Cruces.
Scouting the Miners
This season the UTEP Miners are 0-1 after falling to New Mexico past week in an overtime thriller, 42-35. This will be the Miners second game of the season. UTEP is 7-3 over the last ten games against the Aggies.
The Miners scored 35 points and racked up almost 400 yards of total offense this past weekend but gave up over 480 total yards to the Lobos. UTEP was 4-of-5 in the redzone.
Individually, the Miners are led by running back Aaron Jones, who recorded 127 yards on the ground and two scores. Miner quarterback Jameill Showers threw for 119 yards and a touchdown, while rushing for an additional 44 yards and a score. Jordan Leslie and Ian Hamilton led the receiving corps with five and four catches respectively.
Defensively, Traun Roberson led UTEP with 13 tackles, followed by Devin Cockell with 10. Three other defensive players had eight or more tackles for the Miners.
Miscellaneous NM State versus UTEP Notes
· Historically speaking, the Aggies are better off playing in tight games against their I-10 Miner rivals. In the 90 previous meetings between NM State and UTEP, there have been two ties, 37 games decided by seven points or less and 51 games decided by more than eight points. In games decided by seven points or less, New Mexico State owns a 21-16 record against UTEP. In the 51 games decided by more than seven points, the Aggies are just 14-37. Here is a breakdown of the scoring margin in series history:
· NM State’s record against UTEP in games decided by:
o Three points or less: 11-8
o From 1972-85, nine games between the Aggies and the Miners were decided by three points or less, including five straight from 1976-80. In that span between 1972 and 1985, New Mexico State won six of those nine games. The last game in the series that was decided by three points or less was in 2008, a 34-33 New Mexico State victory in El Paso, Texas.
o Four to seven points: 10-9
o Eight to 14 points: 5-10
o 15+ points: 9-27
o Saturday’s game against UTEP will be New Mexico State’s third game in the series played on Sept. 14. UTEP won both games, one in Las Cruces and one in El Paso.
NM State vs. UTEP Traveling Trophies
Over the course of the 90-year football rivalry between neighboring New Mexico State and the UTEP, two traveling trophies have been created to honor the series victor:
The Silver Spade
Since 1955, the winner of the New Mexico State vs. UTEP football game has taken home the Silver Spade, a replica prospector’s shovel. The origin of the Silver Spade dates back to 1947, when an old prospector’s shovel was unearthed in an abandoned mine in the Organ Mountains near Las Cruces. The whereabouts of the original spade is a mystery, but the current spade (on which are engraved the score of each year’s Aggie-Miner game) has been traded between the two schools since 1955. The relevance of the spade may be due to the fact that at the time of its discovery, the tool was related to the major field of study at both universities—agriculture at New Mexico A&M, and mining and metallurgy at the College of Mines.