New Mexico Football: First Look At The 2023 Schedule
The Lobos will look to claw their way back toward bowl contention in 2023. With that in mind, what can we learn about their schedule?
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A big year for the retooled Lobos.
The Mountain West unveiled its full conference schedule earlier this month, meaning that the New Mexico Lobos finally know what it will take to secure the program’s first winning season since 2016. When nearly every team has at least a few questions to address, could UNM surprise with the hand its been dealt?
We have a great schedule!!!! Excited for the upcoming season!!!
Click the link for downloadable versions of the schedule, phone and computer backgrounds and more! #GoLobos | #WIN5 https://t.co/imQ812qBM3 pic.twitter.com/CBYDsXzxVP
— New Mexico Football (@UNMLoboFB) March 2, 2023
Here’s what the week-by-week schedule looks like with Bill Connelly’s preseason SP+ rankings, where New Mexico is 132nd overall, in parentheses:
Saturday, September 2 – at Texas A&M (17)
Saturday, September 9 – vs. Tennessee Tech (89th among FCS teams)
Saturday, September 16 – vs. New Mexico State (121)
Saturday, September 23 – at Massachusetts (127)
Saturday, September 30 – at Wyoming (101)
Saturday, October 14 – vs. San Jose State (103)
Saturday, October 21 – vs. Hawaii (131)
Saturday, October 28 – at Nevada (107)
Saturday, November 4 – vs. UNLV (108)
Saturday, November 11 – at Boise State (68)
Saturday, November 18 – at Fresno State (67)
Saturday, November 25 – vs. Utah State (118)
What are the biggest initial takeaways?
1. October home dates are rife with potential.
Plenty will need to be resolved between now and the start of the season, but it appears that most of the opportunities to pick up wins in Mountain West action will arrive sooner rather than later for New Mexico. San Jose State needs to replace a ton on defense while Hawaii and Nevada are still very much works in progress themselves, so if things break UNM’s way, a 2-1 record in that stretch is possible.
2. A brutal November road swing.
The Lobos aren’t the only team that will have to tangle with both Boise State and Fresno State this season, but they are the only team who will have to face both on the road. It seems like adding insult to injury that New Mexico heads to Albertsons Stadium and Valley Children’s Stadium in back-to-back November weeks, but them’s the breaks sometimes.
2. At least November at home is more comfortable.
Should New Mexico pull things together as the season progresses, the Lobos faithful can find some comfort in the pair of November home dates that sandwich the road trip mentioned above. Granted, the Lobos may still be underdogs against both UNLV and Utah State, but if one or both teams struggle to address their own questions, an upset bid or two could be on the table.
Hardest stretch: at Boise State, at Fresno State
Easiest stretch: vs. San Jose State, vs. Hawaii, at Nevada
Guaranteed wins: vs. Tennessee Tech
Guaranteed losses: at Texas A&M, at Boise State, at Fresno State
Worse than 50/50 games: at Wyoming, vs. San Jose State, vs. UNLV, vs. Utah State
50/50 games: vs. New Mexico State, vs. Hawaii, at Nevada
Better than 50/50 games: at Massachusetts
Preliminary projected record: 4-8