UMass vs. New Mexico State Prediction, Odds, Trends and Key Players for College Football Week 0

How to bet the UMass-New Mexico State matchup in Week 0.

Dec 26, 2022; Detroit, Michigan, USA; New Mexico State University quarterback Diego Pavia (10)
Dec 26, 2022; Detroit, Michigan, USA; New Mexico State University quarterback Diego Pavia (10) / Lon Horwedel-USA TODAY Sports

New Mexico State closed last season on a tear, winning five of six games to finish the season, including a bowl win over Bowling Green.

With Diego Pavia returning at quarterback, New Mexico State will look to make noise in Conference USA after moving form the Independent ranks. The team will open its season against UMass at home, a team the Aggies beat 23-13 last season.

UMass comes in with a new quarterback in former Clemson recruit Taisun Phommachanh, can he be the catalyst for a strong season?

Let's check out the odds and the key players for Saturday's Week 0 matchup:

UMass vs. New Mexico State Odds, Spread and Total

New Mexico State vs. UMass Betting Trends

  • New Mexico State was 7-5 against the spread (ATS) last season
  • New Mexico State went VOER in four of its last five games
  • UMass went 1-11 straight up, but 5-7 ATS last season
  • UMass went UNDER in eight of 12 games last season

UMass vs. New Mexico State How to Watch

  • Date: Saturday, August 26
  • Game Time: 7:00 PM EST
  • Venue: Aggie Memorial Stadium
  • How to Watch (TV): ESPN
  • New Mexico State Record: 0-0
  • UMass Record: 0-0

UMass vs. New Mexico State Key Players to Watch


Taisun Phommachanh: While he hasn't lived up to his hype as a Clemson quarterback recruit, or even at Georgia Tech, the upside is undeniable for Phommachanh, who has a ton of physical gifts at 6-foot-4. The hope is that dropping down to another lower level can help him unlock some of those traits. It's worth noting that while the team wasn't very good, UMass returns four of five offensive linemen.

New Mexico State

Diego Pavia: Pavia came on strong at the end of the season, grading out as an above average quarterback in terms of EPA/Play (0.10) and leading a NMSU offense that was 71st in terms of EPA/Play. He totaled 1,450 yards through the air and over 500 on the ground, combining for 19 total touchdowns and six interceptions. During the final six games of the season that included five wins, Pavia was far better, completing 62% of his passes with a 13-2 TD-INT ratio.

UMass vs. New Mexico State Prediction and Pick

Pavia finished the season on a tear and I imagine that will continue in the opener with three starters back on the offensive line, his top two receivers and running back Jamoni Jones. While Pavia wasn't stellar down-to-down, the team was 122nd in success rate, the team was top 10 in explosive play rate and should thrive against a UMass defense that was 123rd in explosive rush defense and 119th in explosive pass defense.

I'm not rushing to back the Aggies in the role as a favorite over a touchdown, but I do see some value in backing the over.

Yes, last season's game ended 23-13, but both offenses should have the upper hand in this matchup, and I expect UMass to look far stronger on offense with Phommachanh under center.

As mentioned above, he will play behind four returning offensive linemen and will have weapons in the passing game, including former Miami wide receiver Mark Pope and Anthony Simpson from Arizona.

New Mexico State's defense did a great job of getting into the backfield last season, the team's 27 sacks was 45th in the country, but this team returns only 43% of its production on that side of the ball according to ESPN, 119th in the country. I believe a ton of turnover can lead to some growing pains early against a UMass offense that should take a meaningful step forward in 2023.

I'll back the over as my favorite Week 0 play in this non conference matchup.

Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.