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Dec. 2, 2018
Mean Green make first postseason appearance in Albuquerque-based bowl, Aggies return for second stint
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The field is set for the 13th annual New Mexico Bowl with the North Texas Mean Green and the Utah State Aggies accepting invitations offered today. The game is slated for Saturday, Dec. 15, at 12 p.m. MT/2 p.m. ET on ESPN and ESPN Radio. The matchup pits the Mountain West member against the Conference USA member on the first day of the FBS bowl season.
“What a tremendous matchup to kickoff bowl season,” said Jeff Siembieda, New Mexico Bowl executive director. “I am extremely excited about this game. Two first-class programs, both in the midst of superb seasons, getting together in Albuquerque to showcase college football. We look forward to hosting fans from Utah State and North Texas, as well as local football fans, for what should be another great New Mexico Bowl.”
North Texas (9-3, 5-3 C-USA), is bowl-eligible for the third straight season after winning six of its first seven games to start the season. The Mean Green are making their first appearance in the Albuquerque-based Bowl game. The program’s last bowl victory came in 2014 against the Mountain West’s UNLV in the Heart of Dallas Bowl. Overall, it is the program’s 11th bowl game with a 3-7 record in the post season at the FBS level.
“I am so excited to have North Texas playing in the New Mexico Bowl,” Siembieda said. “Seth Littrell has grown a special program in his three-seasons in Denton. The Mean Green is extremely talented, exciting, explosive and physical and are having a great year. I’m looking forward to having them and the great North Texas fans in Albuquerque.”
Utah State (10-2, 7-1 MW), is playing in its seventh bowl game in eight years. The team is looking for its first bowl win since the program was crowned champions of the 2014 Gildan New Mexico Bowl. The Aggies enter the postseason winning nine of their last 10 games. USU is one of the most prolific offenses in the nation, ranking top 20 nationally in scoring offense (3rd; 47.2), total offense (11th; 492.5) and passing offense (20th; 288.8). The Aggies were ranked as high as No. 21 in the College Football Playoff Rankings (Nov. 20) and No. 13 in the Associated Press Top 25 (Nov. 11).
“The 23rd ranked Aggies are one of the most exciting teams in the country,” Siembieda said. “Their big play potential makes them dangerous from anywhere on the field and as always, Utah State has a very good, tough defense. It’s been a wonderful season for the Aggies and I’m glad they will wrap it up in the New Mexico Bowl.”
These two programs have met seven times before with the Aggies holding a 4-3 edge over the Mean Green. The two have not faced off since 2004 when North Texas won 31-23 in Logan for its second straight win in the series. The Aggies won in Dreamstyle Stadium last year in the regular season, 24-10 against the New Mexico Lobos. USU is 6-9 overall in Albuquerque, including its 2014 Gildan New Mexico Bowl victory. The Mean Green have only played in Albuquerque once, which resulted in an 18-8 win over the Lobos in 1983.
Tickets, which are on sale now, range from $25-40 and can be purchased at the University of New Mexico ticket office, located in The Pit, online at www.unmtickets.com, or by calling 505-925-LOBO.
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