Preview: New Mexico at Texas-San Antonio

When: 2:00 PM ET, Saturday, December 17, 2016
Where: University Stadium, Albuquerque, New Mexico


1. It will be a program participating in its first bowl game against a school playing in rather-familiar territory Dec. 17 when Texas-San Antonio tangles with New Mexico on its own University Stadium turf in the Gildan New Mexico Bowl on Dec. 17 in Albuquerque. The Roadrunners, of Conference USA, beat Charlotte 33-14 in their regular-season finale to earn a bowl invitation in their sixth season of play, matching the FBS earliest-bowl-bid record shared by South Alabama (2014) and Georgia State (2015). Meanwhile, the Lobos of the Mountain West Conference will be making their second straight and fourth overall New Mexico Bowl appearance in the 11-year history of the post-season contest.    

2. Guided by fifth-year coach Bob Davie, 8-4 New Mexico is in the midst of its best season in a decade and is seeking the fifth nine-win campaign in the program’s 85-year history. The Lobos, however, are 3-8-1 in bowl games, including 1-2 in the New Mexico Bowl, and its 2007 New Mexico Bowl win over Nevada stands as its only bowl victory since 1961. The Lobos went 5-1 in Albuquerque this season, and won six of its last seven games overall to earn a share of the Mountain West Mountain Division title at 6-2.

3. Like the Mountain West, Conference USA also is sending seven teams to bowls, with UTSA joining Old Dominion as first-time FBS post-season participants. The Roadrunners are guided by first-year coach Frank Wilson, who had spent the previous 11 seasons as an SEC assistant, and they finished second in the C-USA’s West Division with a 5-3 record. UTSA went 3-4 against bowl qualifiers during the regular season and played the two Power Five opponents – Arizona State and Texas A&M – tough in 32-28 and 23-10 losses, respectively.

TV: 2 p.m. ET, ESPN. LINE: New Mexico -7

ABOUT UTSA (6-6): The Roadrunners rely heavily on their 1-2 rushing punch of senior Jarveon Williams, the program’s all-time leading ground gainer, and sophomore Jalen Rhodes, who have combined for 1,903 yards from scrimmage and 18 touchdowns this season. UTSA’s passing attack is average all around under junior quarterback Dalton Strum, who averages 192.9 yards of total offense per game and has accounted for 22 total TDs with junior wide receivers Josh Stewart (36 receptions-682 yards-five TDs) and Kerry Thomas Jr. (31-510-8) serving as his top targets. Defensively, the Roadrunners ranked third in C-USA with an average of 28.3 points and fourth with an average of 400 yards allowed per game, and are led by freshman linebacker Josiah Tauaefa – the first UTSA player to earn first-team all-Conference-USA honors –  who currently ranks third among FBS freshmen in tackles with a program single-season-record 104 total stops, including 7.5 tackles for loss.  

ABOUT NEW MEXICO (8-4): On the legs of running backs Teriyon Gibson (120.9 yards per game, 12 TDs) and Tyrone Owens (98.5 yards, seven TDs), the Lobos and their option attack lead the FBS in all the major rushing categories, including total yards (4,331), yards per game (360.9) and yards per carry (6.81). Quarterbacks Lamar Jordan and Austin Apodaca have shared time, but the former is the more potent rushing threat with 658 yards and three TDs on the ground for New Mexico, which averaged a Mountain West-best 37.8 points per outing and is fewer than 100 yards away from setting a school single-season record for total offense. Defensive linemen Nik D’Avanzo (60 total tackles) and Garrett Hughes (team-most 6.5 sacks) were All-Mountain West second-team selections and lead a unit which allows 32.4 points and 397.3 yards per game. 

PREDICTION: New Mexico 38, UTSA 28

Stats and Records

Team Comparison

  W/L Strk PF PA Home Away Grass Turf Conf
New Mexico 8-4 W1 37.8 32.4 5-1 3-3 6-2 0-0 6-2
Texas-San Antonio 6-6 W1 29.9 28.3 4-2 2-4 4-3 1-1 5-3

Last Meeting

New Mexico Texas-San Antonio
Date Away Home Tot Rus Pas Tot Rus Pas
10/4/14 UNM 21 UTSA 9 370 283 87 341 112 229

Player Stats

Previous Matchup
Passing Player COMP% YDS TD INT
UNM L. Jordan 63.6 72 0 0
UTSA B. Bogenschutz 62.5 169 0 1
Rushing Player CAR YDS AVG TD
UNM L. Jordan 9 106 11.8 1
UTSA J. Williams 9 95 10.6 1
Receiving Player REC YDS AVG TD
UNM D. Anaya 1 41 41.0 0
UTSA M. Mack 4 77 19.2 0
TDs Player TD
UNM C. Gongbay 1
UTSA J. Williams 1
Passing Player COMP% YDS TD INT
UNM A. Apodaca 55.2 654 5 2
UTSA D. Sturm 58.2 2052 18 5
Rushing Player CAR YDS AVG TD
UNM T. Gipson 131 1209 9.2 12
UTSA J. Williams 191 775 4.1 8
Receiving Player REC YDS AVG TD
UNM Q. Drennan 11 284 25.8 3
UTSA J. Stewart 36 682 18.9 5
TDs Player TD
UNM R. McQuarley 16
UTSA J. Rhodes 10

Quickchart Matchup

New Mexico Off vs  Texas-San Antonio Def
470.2 yards
400 yards
6.8 yards/rush
4.4 yards/rush
7.6 yards/attempt
7.2 yards/attempt
Texas-San Antonio Off vs  New Mexico Def
376.4 yards
397.3 yards
3.8 yards/rush
4.6 yards/rush
7.4 yards/attempt
8.7 yards/attempt

Matchup Stats - Full Matchup

New Mexico Overall Texas-San Antonio
8-4-0 W/L 6-6-0
6-6-0 ATS 6-6-0
10-2-0 O/U 6-6-0
37.8 Pts For 29.9
32.4 Pts Against 28.3
New Mexico A/H Texas-San Antonio
3-3 W/L 4-2
3-3-0 ATS 4-2-0
4-2-0 O/U 3-3-0
31.2 Pts For 37.0
33.3 Pts Against 26.7