The New Mexico Lobos (1-1) host the New Mexico State Aggies (0-3) this weekend for the 110th edition of the Rio Grande Rivalry. Kickoff is set for 4:30 PM EST on Saturday, September 21st at Dreamstyle Stadium and the game will be televised on AT&T Sportsnet.
Taking a look at the Week 4 college football odds, New Mexico opened as a 6-point home favorite earlier this week. That line has come down by a point and a half after early betting, as the Lobos are currently listed at -4.5. The total for the game is sitting at 68 points.
Vegas Betting Preview & Game Odds: New Mexico vs New Mexico State
New Mexico State is still searching for their first win of the year after losing 31-10 at home to San Diego State in Week 3. The Aggies schedule has been incredibly difficult over the first three weeks of the season, as they faced both #19 overall Washington State and #2 overall Alabama before their matchup against a tough Aztecs squad last Saturday. QB Josh Adkins had a rough game his last time out, going 26/41 for 299 yards and a touchdown but giving up a pair of costly interceptions. Jason Huntley couldn’t get anything going on the ground, rushing for just 41 yards on eight carries. WR Tony Nicholson was solid in the receiving game, hauling in seven catches for 78 yards. As a whole, New Mexico State barely gained over 300 yards of total offense and scored just one touchdown against a tough San Diego State defense.
The Aggies defense had an up and down performance in Week 3, as they were quite strong against the pass but gave up 128 yards and two touchdowns on the ground to Aztecs RB Jordan Byrd. However, they did force an interception and hold QB Ryan Agnew to just 106 passing yards and a single touchdown.
New Mexico got absolutely demolished on the road in South Bend last weekend, losing 66-14 to Notre Dame in a game that was basically over by halftime. The Fighting Irish scored 31 points in the second quarter and led by over four touchdowns at the half. The Lobos passing attack was just dreadful, as Tevaka Tuioti and Sheriron Jones combined for just 151 yards and three interceptions. Bryson Carroll and Bobby Cole scored the only two touchdowns of the game for New Mexico, combining for 106 rushing yards on seven carries. WR Aaron Molina was the only member of the receiving corps who had a decent outing, catching two passes for 79 yards.
The Lobos defense obviously had a terrible game against Notre Dame, giving up almost 600 yards of total offense and eight touchdowns. New Mexico was especially poor defending against the pass, as QB Ian Book threw for 360 yards and five touchdowns.
NCAA Football Betting Predictions & Free Pick: New Mexico State +4.5
I’m most likely going to stay away from this game entirely, as both the spread and the over/under look pretty bang on to me. It is also extremely hard to get a read on New Mexico State, as their schedule to open up the regular season has been ridiculously tough. I certainly don’t feel comfortable trying to correlate any sort of connection between how programs like Washington State and Alabama fared against the Aggies to how a below average team like New Mexico will perform here in Week 4. The Lobos barely managed to get past Sam Houston in Week 1 before getting killed by Notre Dame last weekend, which makes it tough to gauge their relative standing in this Rio Grande Rivalry matchup as well.
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If I had to pick a side in this particular spot, I think taking the 4.5 points is probably the best value. The Aggies could easily win this game outright or hang tough and stay within a field goal of a New Mexico team that seems to have a lot of issues on the defensive side of the ball. It is also worth noting that New Mexico State is a very solid 4-1 ATS over their last five games against New Mexico. They are also 4-1 ATS in their last five trips to Dreamstyle Stadium, which is definitely another good sign. Finally, the Lobos have been horrific at home against the spread over the past 12 months, going just 1-8 ATS over their last nine games. New Mexico is also 0-5 ATS in their last five games overall. As such, I think taking the Aggies and the 4.5 points is the optimal play against the spread in the 110th playing of the Rio Grande Rivalry.