LAS CRUCES, New Mexico - With the Mountain West, Mid-American, Big Ten, and Pac-12 conferences reversing course and opting to play this fall, there are just three FBS programs not playing football in 2020.
UCONN, Old Dominion, and New New Mexico State.
So now almost two months after postponing his season, does NMSU Athletic Director Mario Moccia regret pulling the plug on fall football?
“You make the decision that you make with the information you have at the time," says Moccia, who made the decision on August 13th.
"If we all had time machines we could figure things out. But our fear was that when the conferences started up that they were only gonna play in-conference games which puts independents at very difficult spot, if you're not Notre Dame or Army."
When postponing the season, Moccia had stated that NMSU’s goal was to play football in the spring. The team has been on campus working out this whole time.
Now NMSU won’t be restarting their season this fall, but Moccia is firm with the plan on getting his team some games in the next semester.
“That’s something that is critical for their mental health," says Moccia of having some semblance of a season. "It’s critical for our football program to get in there and see who’s who."
"Right now all these other teams that are playing have a pretty good idea of first string, second string. You need to have some live reps for some competition as best as you can just for preparation for the 2021 season."
With only two abs schools to choose from, the Aggies will probably have to schedule opponents from smaller divisions.
In-state schools such as Western New Mexico or New Mexico Highlands could be possible options.
And with a smaller pool of teams to play, don't expect a full schedule.
Moccia says he's been in contact already with a few of the FBS athletic directors.
“I have spoken to the AD’s at UCONN, UMASS, etcetera. But it certainly looks like we’re looking at playing anywhere from two and five games in the spring.”
NMSU opens their 2021 season against rival UTEP at Aggie Memorial Stadium.