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Nevada vs. New Mexico State Odds, Picks: Value Lies on Total in This College Football Affair

Nevada vs. New Mexico State Odds, Picks: Value Lies on Total in This College Football Affair article feature image
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Tyler Ingham/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Toa Taua.

  • With Jay Norvell and Carson Strong gone, Nevada opens its season against New Mexico State.
  • New Mexico State also adds a new head coach and likely has a JUCO transfer at the helm of its offense.
  • Kody Malstrom breaks it all down below below.

Nevada vs. New Mexico State Odds

Saturday, Aug. 27
10 p.m. ET
ESPN2
Nevada Odds
Spread Total Moneyline
-7.5
-110
48
-110o / -110u
-300
New Mexico State Odds
Spread Total Moneyline
+7.5
-110
48
-110o / -110u
+240
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.

Football. Is. Back.

While I’m certainly not the type of person to let the summer times fly by, I couldn’t help but get a little more excited with each passing calendar day as we inched closer to Week 0.

If you follow me in the Action App or on Twitter, then you would have noticed I released an article every week called Futures Friday just to curb my appetite for football. The purpose was not only give you all hopeful value on early plays, but to keep my mind at bay as I patiently awaited the return of football.

But that’s the past. Now, we can look forward to a nightcap featuring two teams going through more changes than a teenager in puberty as Nevada travels to New Mexico State.

It won’t be pretty on the field, but it will certainly be beautiful to witness.

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Nevada Wolf Pack

Speaking of going through changes, no team represents that more than the Nevada Wolf Pack.

In one of the bigger overhauls in recent months, head coach Jay Norvell left for conference foe Colorado State and took a majority of the players and coaches with him.

To make matters worse, star quarterback Carson Strong left for the NFL after leading Nevada with the fifth-highest passing average in the nation at 347 yards per game.

To limit the damage of the overhaul, new head coach Ken Wilson will look to establish a more simplistic offensive approach that will lean heavily toward the run game and tight end targets. That change will be led by former UCLA tight end coach and current Nevada offensive coordinator Derek Sage.

That’s a drastic change, as Nevada had one of the lowest rush rates in the nation last season. This will set running back Toa Taua up to potentially break out after he posted 732 yards and six touchdowns respectable on limited attempts (150) last season.

So, who will be running the offense? Well, that still remains a mystery. As of writing, no quarterback has won the job, and it looks like Nate Cox and Shane Illingworth will split reps.

Cox returns after filling in for Strong in the bowl game with a one-touchdown performance. Competing against him is Shane Illingworth, who finished with 535 yards and three touchdowns in limited playing time at Oklahoma State last season.

The defensive front returns only one starter in nose tackle Dom Peterson, who will anchor the line with an emphasis on stopping the run this year.

DOM PETERSON!!! pic.twitter.com/H9pSe04Hmg

— Pack Center (@PackCenterNV) October 24, 2021

With some experience returning in the secondary, it will be up to the new front unit to generate any sort of pressure if it wants to compete. The offense will have some growing pains, leaving it up to the defense to remain competitive.


New Mexico State Aggies

Eerily similar to Nevada’s situation, NMSU comes in with a new head coach. Jerry Kill takes over and will need to figure out his quarterback situation as well.

With a track record of running a versatile offense, the job will come down to who can extend plays on the ground while doing damage through the air.

While not officially announced, JUCO transfer Diego Pavia looks to take control of the offense with his dual-threat ability.

The Aggies will look to establish the run with experience in the backfield, as O’Maury Samuels looks to play the lead back role after a stint at Michigan.

While the offense is going through a complete overhaul, the defense returns an impressive TARP rating of 73% — good for 34th in the nation.

While experienced, the Aggies still left a lot to be desired on defense with a rank near the bottom of the barrel in Defensive Success Rate. Not all hope is lost, though, as they generated a top-40 Havoc rate.

If the defense can rattle Nevada’s inexperienced offense and generate any sort of Havoc, it will find itself firmly in contention to win when it comes down to the wire.


Nevada vs. New Mexico State Betting Pick

New Mexico State +13 was one of the first bets I made this season, doing so a little over a month ago. With that number dropping as low as +8.5 at some books, I’ve turned my focus elsewhere.

Although it’s also dropping considerably, the total still has some value for a lesser-sized bet, as this could be one ugly nightcap.

Both offenses will struggle to find continuity as they go through a quarterback battle with new faces all over. With mid-game adjustments comes a struggle to maintain game flow.

To help limit scoring even more, both defenses return familiar faces. Nevada brings an experienced secondary to Las Cruces, while NMSU returns the majority of a Havoc-minded defense.

Play under 50.5 for small, with a live opportunity to take NMSU should the spread reach +14 or higher as both offenses look to get in a groove.

Pick: Under 50.5

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