College Football Picks, Predictions, and Previews: The Way It Oughtta Be

Fresno State vs. New Mexico 12/12/2020 College Football Picks, Prediction, and Preview

The Fresno State visits New Mexico on 12/12/2020 at 10:30PM.

Fresno State and New Mexico face off in an important game for both teams as every game in this shortened season with limited or no fans in attendance means more. Fresno State has a record of 3-2 this season. New Mexico is 1-5 this season. Both have players to meet and know.

Fresno State Team Defense Preview

Fresno State has had 62 defensive drives in non-garbage time minutes and they yield 5.26 plays per drive. There is not much to take away here when it comes to how many plays per drive opponents run, but they are a team that falls in the average window when it comes to plays per drive. Opponents face third and long situations a lot against this defense. This is a defense that forces opponents to commit penalties, have compromised offensive line play, and fail to convert on crunch possessions. Passing plays make up 50.31% of their opponents’ play calls.Opponents typically have some form of run/pass balance against them.

Fresno State opponents have struggled with running the ball and this defense has crushed the spirits of their opponents with zero or negative yard plays. 4th and Short is not a cake walk against this defense, maybe passing on 4th and Short or having some sort of RPO is the way to go here because if an Offensive Coordinator thinks that they can just line and run a Quarterback Sneak or hand it off to a tailback, they are mistaken. How effective are opposing offensive lines given what we know about their ability to force negative yardage rushing plays? Fresno State can take credit for holding the offensive line of their opponent to 2.78 yards per carry. Generally speaking, this is an average defense when it comes to how offensive lines control or fail to control them on the ground. This is a team that is getting gashed too much for the tastes of their base. Linebackers are not stopping the bleeding well enough. Long breakout runs against this Defense are far too common. This is a very porous rushing defense that is incapable of preventing a situation where their safeties chase down a running back or quarterback.

Fresno State has made the turnover belt, chain, pads, lunch pail or whatever gimmick they use change hands a lot. This is a Defense that causes pure aggravation. Fresno State should have a sign ready for opponents near the Visitor Locker Room that says “Welcome to Hell”, this front seven is deep and they cause a lot of problems. Fresno State has shown themselves to be better at stopping the pass than the run this season.

Fresno State Team Offense Preview

Fresno State has had 66 total drives this season and they generate 5.8 plays per drive. Fresno State runs a lot of plays per drive and this could wear an opposing defense down. Fresno State is an average offense when it comes to staying ahead of the chains, getting into 3rd and Short scenarios, and converting on 3rd and 4th Down. Passing plays make up 55.35% of their play calls.Fresno State tends to pass more than other teams.

Fresno State struggles with running the ball, getting zero or negative yard plays is disspiriting and the offensive line is not effectively making a good push. Poor playcalling, pre-snap adjustments or post-snap reads may be responsible and this could fall on the Quarterback, Offensive Coordinator, and Head Coach. How effective is the offensive line given what we know about their ability to prevent negative yards on rushing plays? More than you think, thanks to the Adjusted Line Yards metric. Fresno State can take credit for 2.7 yards per carry. So what does this mean? It means that the offensive line has been incredibly disappointing in their contribution to the ground game. When it comes to getting to that second level where linebackers have not crashed down on the line of scrimmage, they are getting stopped with ease. They feature a relatively average explosiveness in the running game, maybe there will be a breakout rushing play, but it is not something to count on from them.

Defenses have had trouble making big, disruptive plays against Fresno State this season. Front sevens are causing an average amount of trouble for the Offense. Fresno State is a better passing team than running team this season.

New Mexico Team Defense Preview

New Mexico has had 75 total defensive drives this season and they yield 4.83 plays per drive. Relatively speaking, New Mexico is not a team that allows many plays per drive. This defense either gives up big plays quickly or induces a lot of three-and-outs, we shall find out more. New Mexico has a generally average defense. Nothing too special about it, but they are capable of rising up when needed. Passing plays make up 46.96% of their opponents’ play calls.Their opponents favor running the ball as opposed airing it out.

New Mexico is not doing anything particularly special as far as their ability to create negative yardage plays on the ground. Opponent rushing yards attributed to their offensive line this season comes out to 3.21 yards per carry. This defense lets offensive lines have too much control over them on the ground, too much push from the opposing offensive line. This is also a team that is allowing running backs and quarterbacks to get to the second-level in an average fashion. They are capable of giving up a long run, which is really demoralizing when the opposing team has the ball deep in their own territory.

This is not a disruptive Defense and they get pushed over way too easily. Perhaps they are too vanilla with playcalling. This front seven is simply unable to make an impact, something must change or else the problems will repeat. New Mexico has shown themselves to be better at stopping the pass than the run this season.

New Mexico Team Offense Preview

New Mexico has had 75 drives in non-garbage time minutes and they average 5.52 plays per drive. There is not much to take away here when it comes to how many plays per drive they run, but they are a team that falls in the average window when it comes to plays per drive. Struggles to get ahead of the chains and convert on third and fourth down are common, the offense can stagnate. New Mexico passes the football 47.10% of the time.Relatively speaking, this is a team that favors run/pass balance.

On first downs, getting ahead of the chains is crucial and running the ball well on first down can get a team there, New Mexico has done a good job avoiding the negative yardage rushing plays. How effective is the offensive line given what we know about their ability to prevent negative yards on rushing plays? More than you think, thanks to the Adjusted Line Yards metric. New Mexico can take credit for 2.97 yards per carry. Generally speaking, this is an average offensive line as far as their ability to set up the running game. This is also a team that is getting to the second-level in an average fashion. Offensive line and running backs are average in this regard. They feature a relatively average explosiveness in the running game, maybe there will be a breakout rushing play, but it is not something to count on from them.

Defenses have had average success disrupting the flow of the New Mexico Offense. Front sevens are causing an average amount of trouble for the Offense. New Mexico has shown themselves to be a better running team than passing team this season.

The Fresno State Roster

The Players to Watch for Fresno State

Jake Haener QB 6-1 194

This season, Jake Haener has put up 1671 yards and 11 touchdowns. He has thrown 4 interceptions. He has a QB Rating of 154.8thus far this season. Jake Haener has thrown 4 interceptions this season.As a rusher, Jake Haener has 81.0 rushing yards, which puts him in the 72.22 percentile among Quarterbacks. He ran the ball as opposed to throwing the ball 47.0 times this season, which puts him in the 80.56 percentile. Has he hit paydirt as a runner? He has 2.0 rushing touchdowns this season.

Ronnie Rivers RB 5-9 195

This season, Ronnie Rivers has 508 rushing yards on 99 carries. Was he able to get to the end zone on the ground? He has 7 rushing touchdowns.As a receiver in the backfield, Ronnie Rivers picked up 265 yards. He caught the ball as opposed to taking handoffs or catching laterals 27 times this season. Did he score often as a receiver? He had 2 receiving touchdowns this season.

Jalen Cropper WR 6-0 160

This season, Jalen Cropper picked up 386 yards. He caught the ball 25 times this season. Did he score often as a receiver? He had 4 receiving touchdowns this season.

Kevin Atkins DT 6-2 320

The leading tackler among Defensive Tackles for Fresno State, Kevin Atkins has 17 tackles this season. He was able to keep rushers back and penetrate the offensive line with 4 tackles for loss, which puts him in the 89.01 percentile among Defensive Tackles. When it came to rushing the Quarterback, he has been able to take them down 4 times this season, which put him in the 97.76 percentile among all Defensive Tackles in College Football. He has forced 0 fumbles this season.

David Perales DL 6-3 240.0

The leading tackler among Defensive Ends for Fresno State, David Perales has 25 tackles this season. He was able to keep rushers back and penetrate the offensive line with 8 tackles for loss, which puts him in the 95.73 percentile among Defensive Ends. When it came to rushing the Quarterback, he has been able to take them down 4 times this season, which put him in the 93.64 percentile among all Defensive Ends in College Football. He has forced 4 fumbles this season.

Bralyn Lux DB 5-11 175.0

He is the leading tackler among non-exclusive Defensive Backs (meaning he can play either Safety Position, Nickel Back, Star or even play as a Cornerback in coverage) for Fresno State, Bralyn Lux had 28 tackles which puts him in the 76.4 percentile among returning non-exclusive Defensive Backs. He was able to keep rushers and receivers back on screens with 1 tackles for loss this season, which puts him in the 71.77 percentile among Secondary position players. When it came to blitzing the Quarterback, this season he was able to take them down 0 times this season. Bralyn Lux as a ball hawker was able to pick off 1 passes this season, which puts him in the 83.84 percentile among returning secondary position players this season.

The New Mexico Roster

The Players to Watch for New Mexico

Trae Hall QB 6-2 188

This season, Trae Hall has put up 518 yards and 0 touchdowns. He has thrown 3 interceptions. He has a QB Rating of 89.6thus far this season. Trae Hall has thrown 3 interceptions this season.As a rusher, Trae Hall has 110.0 rushing yards, which puts him in the 78.09 percentile among Quarterbacks. He ran the ball as opposed to throwing the ball 37.0 times this season, which puts him in the 72.07 percentile. Has he hit paydirt as a runner? He has 0.0 rushing touchdowns this season.

Bobby Cole RB 5-9 211

This season, Bobby Cole has 410 rushing yards on 79 carries. Was he able to get to the end zone on the ground? He has 3 rushing touchdowns.As a receiver in the backfield, Bobby Cole picked up 75 yards. He caught the ball as opposed to taking handoffs or catching laterals 5 times this season. Did he score often as a receiver? He had 1 receiving touchdowns this season.

Andrew Erickson WR 6-2 194

This season, Andrew Erickson picked up 264 yards. He caught the ball 17 times this season. Did he score often as a receiver? He had 2 receiving touchdowns this season.

Elmer Pauni NT 6-3 297

The leading tackler among Defensive Tackles for New Mexico, Elmer Pauni has 7 tackles this season. He was able to keep rushers back and penetrate the offensive line with 0 tackles for loss, which puts him in the 23.32 percentile among Defensive Tackles. When it came to rushing the Quarterback, he has been able to take them down 0 times this season, which put him in the 32.96 percentile among all Defensive Tackles in College Football. He has forced 0 fumbles this season.

Joey Noble DE 6-3 236.0

The leading tackler among Defensive Ends for New Mexico, Joey Noble has 36 tackles this season. He was able to keep rushers back and penetrate the offensive line with 3 tackles for loss, which puts him in the 76.3 percentile among Defensive Ends. When it came to rushing the Quarterback, he has been able to take them down 2 times this season, which put him in the 80.93 percentile among all Defensive Ends in College Football. He has forced 1 fumbles this season.

Tavian Combs S 6-2 190.0

He is the leading tackler among non-exclusive Defensive Backs (meaning he can play either Safety Position, Nickel Back, Star or even play as a Cornerback in coverage) for New Mexico, Tavian Combs had 39 tackles which puts him in the 88.18 percentile among returning non-exclusive Defensive Backs. He was able to keep rushers and receivers back on screens with 0 tackles for loss this season, which puts him in the 31.97 percentile among Secondary position players. When it came to blitzing the Quarterback, this season he was able to take them down 0 times this season. Tavian Combs as a ball hawker was able to pick off 0 passes this season, which puts him in the 37.97 percentile among returning secondary position players this season.

Tony Collier CB 5-11 165

Considered the leading tackler among Cornerbacks for New Mexico, Tony Collier had 21 tackles which puts him in the 76.06 percentile among Corners. He was able to keep rushers and receivers back on screens with 1 tackles for loss this season, which puts him in the 77.62 percentile among Corners. When it came to blitzing the Quarterback, this season he was able to take them down 0 times this season. Tony Collier as a ball hawker was able to pick off 0 passes this season, which puts him in the 36.4 percentile among Corners this season.

Fresno State vs. New Mexico Prediction, Picks, and Odds


Prediction: Fresno State 41 New Mexico 30

Spread Pick: Fresno State -10.5 -109 GtBets
Moneyline Pick: Fresno State -404 SportsInteraction
Total Pick: Over 60 -110 5Dimes