New Mexico Bowl 2021

New Mexico Bowl: UTEP vs. Fresno State

Fun fact: Half the stadium is reserved for literal coyotes.

Nicky G
Nicky G

Location: University Stadium (Albuquerque, N.M.)

Time: Dec. 18, 2:15 p.m. EST on ESPN

Teams: UTEP (7–5) versus Fresno State (9–3)

Line: Fresno State -10.5

Summary

The UTEP Miners will be arriving at their first bowl since 2014 to play a fairly fearsome Fresno State team that looks better on paper, in person, and generally in every conceivable manner.

Both teams were foes in the WAC, with the Bulldogs owning the all-time series at 8-3-1. Still, the last time these two played, in 2004, UTEP won 24-21. UTEP might have to channel that 2004 energy — spike their hair with gel and wear puka shell necklaces or something — because haven't won a bowl game in more than 50 years.

Our Pick

An ice-cold UTEP team (that's lost 4 out of its past 5 in C-USA action) versus a far superior team that's lost its head coach to Washington and its star quarterback to the transfer portal?

This bowl definitely has the drama factor.

Thankfully, a great quarterback does not a full team make.

We still like Fresno State to cover the spread, especially after they've been battle-tested with wins against UCLA and San Diego State — and a real squeaker in a loss against Oregon.

The Score: Fresno State in big bulldog fashion, 49-17

The Actual Score: Fresno State 31, UTEP 24

Bowls

Nicky G

Dad of 3. WVian by birth. ATX for now.