Friday, May 18, 2012

One option for Aggies: A winning season

This past spring, a slogan for New Mexico State football was, “It’s Time.”

Perhaps more fitting entering the 2012 season would be, “It’s (Do or Die) Time.”

For the team, the program, and Division I football in Las Cruces.

It’s about investing money into the program, and going for a winning season instead of simply hoping to fall backwards into one.

It’s about fans coming out and supporting the team, and showing that, yes, Division I football can happen in Las Cruces.

It’s about finishing the season with a winning record, going to the New Mexico Bowl, and beating a Mountain West team.

Even if all these things happen, could it still be too little, too late for NMSU? Absolutely.

These above moves should have been made years ago — and it seemed like they were when the Aggies first entered the Western Athletic Conference with then-president Mike Martin at the controls.

But recent years have seen a downturn — not a good time for such things to take place, why with conference rivals Utah State, San Jose State and Louisiana Tech planning an escape route, while the Aggies were busy trying to strengthen the WAC.

The fact that the football program is in this position is, well, depressing.

But the reality is that realignment isn’t done yet either.

More pieces are going to shift, and perhaps a conference will actually figure it needs the Aggies to fill out its membership.

It’s like playing basketball in the park with 10 dudes, and eight have been selected to a team. Two are left to fill out the roster, and, even if they aren’t any good you need them to play five on five. The Aggies just might be that guy.

NMSU has aspirations of being in the Mountain West, and maybe Sun Belt Commissioner Karl Benson will do them a brother-in-law favor and extend his league’s footprint to Las Cruces.

But neither seem to be an ideal fit at the moment — while the Mountain West would place the Aggies well regionally, and would seem like the best long-term home, could NMSU compete financially with such programs? And the Sun Belt simply isn’t a great geographic fit for the school or its current recruiting base.

Never mind that neither league seems very eager to add the Aggies at this point anyway.

Having an independent football program? What coach in his right mind would try to lead the Aggies to the promised land under such difficult circumstances?

One other option, however, is simply having a winning football season in 2012, then winning a bowl game for the first time since 1960. You don’t think that eyesore isn’t working against the Aggies in the present?

At the very least, it would provide a little recognition for the school, and give the decision-makers something to consider.

Every year is important, but this one would seem to elevate to a higher level.

The reality is, it could be one of the Aggies final hopes at survival.

Follow me on Twitter @TeddyFeinberg


Anonymous said...

Very true.

This years team is playing for the future of D1 football in Las Cruces.

Since Couture & Boston have dragged their feet. The FB team will have to go out and audition for the future of NMSU. Not an easy task.


Anonymous said...

Even if the beat an NFL team in a preseason game they're not going anywhere.

NMS is the bottom of the barrel in the NCAA.

Anonymous said...

I'd say UNM is the bottom of the barrel in the NCAA having lost to NMSU three years in a row.


Anonymous said...

SO,what is odd about the Facebook "article commenting and reader feedback" section after every LC Sun article ?

Well you only get to see homer responses. If you have any other view on the subject it dosen't appear.

Anonymous said...

Anon. 7:49,
Your right and to top it off. You have to pay a fee to read/ write about the article only only to have it deleted.

So much for freedom of free speech.

Terry said...

Teddy, you have revised history a little bit. The move to the WAC was a fait accompli before Martin got here and he would tell anyone who would listen that that was the case. In fact, he was unhappy about it, because of the costs. Brian Faison who engineered the move was moved out of the AD position and Martin's choice, Mac Boston was hired. To imply that everything was okay until Martin left is not right. We were in over our heads financially then and we are in over our heads now.

Teddy said...

I believe if Martin were still here the Aggies would be in the Mountain West

Terry said...

Can't argue with belief. Belief is faith based. Just once, though, I would like a sports writer or a homer fan to take an honest look at the finances involving college athletics. NMSU spends $26 million, now, with $18 million of that subsidy. So, the answer is to go into the Mountain West where the schools like UNM spend $40 million. There is no more money on the horizon, just more subsidy.

Anonymous said...

Teddy, NMSU is never going to drop football. You can bank on that.

Anonymous said...

Bad news from Benson Aggies.From the Idaho Statesman.

"We are not pursuing additional members at this time. To squelch the speculation of a football championship game, it is not high on our radar screen and priority list," Commissioner Karl Benson said. "... We wanted to be fair (to the schools that have contacted us). At this juncture, the Sun Belt shouldn't be considered a landing spot whether it's an FCS member or an existing FBS member."

Benson, the former commissioner of the WAC, said he spoke with Idaho Athletic Director Rob Spear about the "direction the Sun Belt was headed." Benson said the Sun Belt's announcement "allows both Idaho and New Mexico State to know the direction the Sun Belt is headed. Personally, I wish the best for the University of Idaho and New Mexico State."


Anonymous said...

Do you really want to go to the Sun Belt where Benson is the commish? This is the guy who took a powder instead of sticking with the WAC when it really needed him.

Look up "snake" in a dictionary and see Benson's picture.

Aggie football is in trouble, no two ways about it.