This Saturday at Bronco Stadium, the New Mexico State Aggies will continue their three year trek towards the endzone (the Aggies haven't scored a single point on the Broncos since 2006). Will they finally get on the board? God only knows...but now that Hal Mumme's been jettisoned, they have a fighting chance. You want real intrigue? Okay...it's Senior Day and the final game of the regular season. The Aggies don't stand a chance, but that doesn't mean you can't come out and bid a fond farewell to the world's smallest graduating class. In preparation, let's learn a bit about this week's foe through the magic of factoids and childish jokes (don't worry, Kellen Moore already knows their defense intimately). It's time to get to know your enemy, Bronco Nation...so take notes.
Ten things Bronco fans probably didn't know about New Mexico State University or their adobe abode
10) New Mexico State University was founded in 1888 as Las Cruces College. The school operated from a series of adobe buildings in the heart of the village of Las Cruces. One year later, in 1889, the school was renamed the New Mexico College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts. In 1960 the school received its current moniker, but I'd like to think they are still teaching art to mechanics.
9) Ex-New Mexico State head coach Hal Mumme developed a series of instructional DVDs on the intricacies of his "Air Raid" offense (you can get all 3 for only $109.99). According to Mumme, "the beauty of the Air Raid Offense is that players love to play this offense and fans flock to see it". I apologize to anyone that was mid-sip on a beverage when they read that quote. Order now!
One of the only known photographs of the mysterious "Mumme"
8) The founder and first president of New Mexico State University was an eastern-born Quaker educator named Hiram Hadley. According to his obituary, Hiram Hadley wished to see "3 principal items" accomplished in his lifetime: National Prohibition, Women's Suffrage and International Peace. Hadley died in 1922, and as such, lived to see two of those 3 items come to fruition. Item number 4, "Never hire Hal Mumme", was also scrawled on a piece of parchment, but sadly, was not discovered until 2006, when it was already too late.
Hiram Hadley: A man that enjoyed beardly pursuits
7) New Mexico State is home to the world's hottest chile pepper. In 2006, NMSU professor Paul Bosland discovered the Bhut Jolokia pepper, which measures at 1,001,304 Scoville Heat Units (SHU). For comparison, an average jalapeño pepper measure 10,000 SHU. In 2007, during the ESPN broadcast of the NMSU/UNR game, the Billy Bush of sideline reporting, Rob Stone, decided to give it a little taste test.
Hide the milk!
6) New Mexico State has never lost a bowl game. Of course, they've only been to three, and none since 1960—but still, no one can away their 1960 Sun Bowl victory over Utah State, their 1959 Sun Bowl victory over North Texas or their 1936 tie with Hardin-Simmons in, you guessed it, the Sun Bowl.
5) The New Mexico State head coach with the best winning percentage was Arthur H. Badenoch, who won 86% of his games between the years of 1910 and 1913 (4 seasons). Badenoch also coached the NMSU basketball team during those years, but had less success—posting only 3 wins and 22 losses.
4) At the Whole Enchilada Fiesta in early October, the city of Las Cruces makes the world's largest enchilada. Afterwards, the city then takes the world's largest Alka Seltzer.
3) The outlaw Billy the Kid resided in Las Cruces for a portion of his short life, as did his killer, lawman Pat Garrett. Popular legend suggests that Garrett killed Billy the Kid by feeding him a portion of the world's largest enchilada and then lighting a match near his residence.
2) Well before the "Air Raid" sirens went off, New Mexico State actually had a run game. In 1998, running back Denvis Manns rushed for 1,469 yards...still an Aggie record. In fact, Manns was only the 3rd ever NCAA runningback to rush for at least 1,000 yards in four consecutive seasons. Despite Manns' offensive prowess, he never enjoyed a winning season as an Aggie...a feat that countless Aggie players have now matched.
1) In 1912, the Aggie football team defeated Fort Bliss, TX 116-0. Apparently, at the time, the football team at Fort Bliss was classified 4F.