LAS CRUCES, NEW MEXICO (KTSM) – There were just three FBS programs that didn’t play football in the fall of 2020; one of them, of course, was the Aggies of New Mexico State.
Head coach Doug Martin and company will now have the distinction of being the only FBS team to play games this spring. NMSU will play a 3-game schedule featuring two FCS teams and an NCAA Division II opponent to get them ready for the fall of 2021.
The Aggies hit the field for the first time since August on Friday night, and they were back inside Aggie Memorial Stadium for practice number two of the winter on Saturday. NMSU was able to begin practices on its home turf due to COVID-19 restrictions loosening up a little bit in the Land of Enchantment earlier this week.
NMSU without question was fired up to get back to work after a long layoff to make up for lost time in the fall. They have a unique opportunity as the only FBS team playing games to do just that, and the added practice time will help them even more.
“I think it can be an advantage to us if we can stay out here,” Martin said. “If we have to pause and do all those things everyone had to do in the fall then it won’t be as big of an advantage. The amount of practices we’re getting is more than everyone else this spring, and if we can play some games to get our guys added experience, that’s even bigger.”
NMSU is required to test its athletes regularly in order to practice. The Aggies will hold 29 official workouts before playing the first of three games this spring against Tarleton State on Feb. 20. As of now.
It will definitely be cool and fun. We’re all itching to get back on the field,” said junior quarterback Jonah Johnson. “I think we have a great team and we’re all ready to get rolling.”
NMSU’s spring schedule is rounded out with games against New Mexico Highlands and Dixie State on Feb. 27 and March 6, respectively.
As of now, all three of the Aggies spring games are slated to be played in Las Cruces, but that is subject to change; state of New Mexico COVID-19 restrictions currently don’t allow sporting events to be played in-state.