Previewing Georgia State’s second opponent: New Mexico State

nick arbuckle, georgia state panthers

Georgia State quarterback Nick Arbuckle passed for 294 yards and one touchdown and ran for another in last year’s loss to New Mexico State at the Georgia Dome. (CURTIS COMPTON / CCOMPTON@AJC.COM)

Georgia State won’t open summer camp until Aug. 1, so it’s a perfect time to start looking ahead to the teams the Panthers will face during the upcoming season.

I’ve already previewed the opener against Charlotte. The Panthers, 1-11 last season, will host the 49ers on Sept. 4 at the Georgia Dome.

Let’s turn to New Mexico State. The Panthers will play in Las Cruces on Sept. 12.

New Mexico State

2014 record: 2-10, 1-7 in the Sun Belt.

Coach: Doug Martin, in his third season.

Starters returning: Eight on offense and nine on defense.

Offensive system: Spread.

Defensive system: Multiple.

Three significant stats last year:

  1. The Aggies averaged 420.9 yards of offense per game.
  2. Defense allowed 309.9 rushing yards per game, last in FBS.
  3. The Aggies lost 34 turnovers.

Key starters returning:

  • Quarterback Tyler Rogers, who passed for 2,779 yards and 19 touchdowns, but also threw 23 interceptions.
  • Leading rusher Larry Rose III (1,102 yards and 9 touchdowns)
  • Leading receiver Teldrick Morgan (75 receptions for 903 yards and seven touchdowns)
  • Leading defensive back Winston Rose (5 interceptions)

How does Georgia State match up

IF the Panthers can’t run the ball against New Mexico State it’s going to be a long season for the offense. The Aggies, as noted, were atrocious at stopping the run.

Repeating what I wrote about Charlotte, the question for the defense, as it always will be, is can it get a pass rush against what will be a quick-snap, quick-read, quick-delivery offense?

The Aggies edged the Panthers 34-31 last year in the Georgia Dome on an 11-yard touchdown pass from Rogers to Morgan with 15 seconds left. Rogers passed for 241 yards as the Aggies had more than 430 yards in offense.

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