Interviewed by Daniel Gonzales
Photography by Andres Leighton
NMSU Head Football Coach looks back at last year and talks about this year’s team
Shortly after Larry Rose III rushed for the game winning touchdown, many of 25,000 loyal Aggie supporters who made the trip to Tucson for the NOVA Arizona Bowl, rushed the field in celebration of the Aggies first bowl win in 57 years. In 1960, the last time NMSU won a bowl game, a gallon of gas was 31 cents, and a gallon of milk was only 49 cents. “I don’t believe anyone in Las Cruces wants to wait that long for another post season victory, this one felt too good,” says Coach Doug Martin about the long drought.
We caught up with Coach Martin and talked to him about the big win and how he envisions continuing the success of last year’s break-through season.
What made last year’s season so special, coach?
There was so much that made last season special. First off, the support of the fans, not only at the Arizona Bowl, but all season long. I believe our players felt the support of Las Cruces, and performed to the level of support we received. Also, this was the first recruiting class my staff and I had when we started out here at NMSU. We didn’t have much to sell but a vision, and these players made that vision come to fruition, that was pretty special.
What are your hopes and expectations for the upcoming season?
Obviously, we want to continue the success of last season. With that victory, and the exposure, we became more visible to recruits, and we want to build our program to raise the bar even higher this year.
What players do you expect to be standouts?
Well, we just found out that linebacker Terrill Hanks was put on the national watchlist for the Butkus Award, which is the top award for linebackers in all of college football. We expect big things from him on the defensive side of the ball, and on offense, Johnathan Boone at wide receiver looks very, very impressive.
Besides UNM and UTEP, what game has become the biggest rivalry?
Of course, UNM and UTEP are two games circled on our schedule every year, but Utah State has become a big rival of ours since I got here to NMSU. They are a tough opponent, but they seem to bring out the best in us.
What is your message to the team heading into this season?
Sustaining success. As hard as it was to achieve success last year, it’s going to be harder to sustain it. Sustaining success is something we talk about quite often with our team.
Is there anything you would like to say to the city of Las Cruces?
First of all, thank you! The support we received from Las Cruces was tremendous, I don’t know if people understand how important it is for us to have the continued support of our city. It was pretty clear, especially the last two games of last season, how big a part the fans played in our victories. Keep coming out, we feed off your energy, and again thank you for all your support. GO AGGIES!”
In what seems to be the most anticipated season for New Mexico State Aggie football in decades, Coach Martin had an air of business-like optimism that gives a lot of confidence to the Aggie faithful that our football program is on the rise. Let’s all find a way out to Aggie Memorial Stadium and bring our kids, cousins, friends, husbands, wives, even grandma and grandpa to come cheer on the boys on Saturdays!
New Mexico State Football Home Games
vs. Liberty Falcons at 6pm
vs. Georgia Southern Eagles at 4pm
vs. Alcorn State Browns Braves at 2pm
New Mexico State Football Away Games
at UTEP Miners at 5:30pm
at Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin’ Cajuns TBD
at Texas State Bobcats TBD
at BYU Cougars TBD
at Liberty Flames 12pm