Tomorrow, Rutgers looks to improve its record to 2-1 against the New Mexico Lobos in a noon kickoff in Piscataway. New Mexico is coming off of an upset loss to in-state rival New Mexico State while Rutgers is fresh off of a 52-14 win against Howard.
Rutgers vs New Mexico
Location: Rutgers Stadium | Piscataway, New Jersey
Time: 12pm ET
Radio: WOR 710-AM, WCTC 1450-AM
Line: Rutgers -6
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The Tale of the Tape
Rutgers enters this game as 6 point favorites, but that line seems a little bit low. New Mexico just lost to New Mexico State, a game in which they were favored by 11 points. Their triple option offense is something that Rutgers has seen plenty in the past couple of years. However, New Mexico could surprise Rutgers, as Howard did in the first half, and jump out to a lead. Rutgers needs to be careful here, as an unorthodox opponent like New Mexico is exactly the type of team that can shock Rutgers with a huge upset.
How Rutgers wins
Rutgers should be able to control the tempo of the game and play like they did in the second half against Howard. They need to play disciplined defense and contain the QB, something they did not do at all in the first half against Howard. They also need to get in an offensive flow right out of the gate. They need to establish the run game and open up opportunities for Chris Laviano to be able to make plays through the air.
How New Mexico wins
Grit. New Mexico needs to play a tough game and never take their foot off the gas. As we saw last week, Rutgers is vulnerable to any team if they expose them. Rutgers’ biggest weakness was stopping the run and that is essentially all New Mexico does. The defensive ends were very weak in containing the QB run and New Mexico should look to attack them there. If New Mexico can make some big plays early on and hold onto a lead, they have a chance to upset the Scarlet Knights.
Rutgers should have no problem winning this game, but I don’t expect it to be a flawless effort. i think the young and inexperienced linebackers will struggle defending the triple option and will give up a few points. However, New Mexico is missing their best linebacker and the Rutgers offense should be able to move the ball pretty easily and be able to control the game on the ground. I think Rutgers wins big, but I would not be surprised if New Mexico puts up a bit of a fight in the beginning. I’ll go with Rutgers 41 New Mexico 20.