New Mexico State has added a home-and-home series with Central Michigan, athletic director Mario Moccia announced on Thursday.
The Aggies go to Mount Pleasant, Mich., on Oct. 12, 2019 to face the Chippewas. NMSU is scheduled to host Central Michigan on Sept. 5, 2026. Next year’s meeting with be the first between the two schools.
“I have a lot of experience playing in the MAC while at Kent State and know that Central Michigan has a tremendous program with great tradition,” said NMSU coach Doug Martin in a statement provided by the school. “They have always been a really good program that will make for a great home-and-home matchup.”
Central Michigan had openings when a previous deal with South Florida came apart.
The contract with Central Michigan gives NMSU, which will operate as a football independent this season and into the foreseeable future, with 11 games set for 2019. There remains no date yet for 2019 with UTEP, whom the Aggies have faced 95 times since beginning the rivalry in 1914. It would be the Aggies’ turn to host. (Click here to see the Aggies’ 2019 schedule as constructed.)
Central Michigan was 8-5 last year, losing in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl 37-14 to Wyoming on Dec. 22.
NMSU begins the 2018 season at home on Aug. 25 against Wyoming. The game will air on ESPN2 with an 8 p.m. kickoff. The Aggies aren’t getting any money for appearing on ESPN2 but say they are happy for the exposure: This is the first time NMSU has played on any ESPN linear network at home since 2009 and the first time on ESPN2 at home since 2007.