Preview: Nevada (3-1) vs. New Mexico State (1-5)
Saturday, Oct. 9, 2021 – 7:30 p.m. (PT)
Reno, Nev. – Mackay Stadium
TV: CBS Sports Network (PxP -Jason Knapp; Analyst – Ross Tucker; Sideline – Desmond Purnell)
Radio: 94.5 FM (PxP – John Ramey; Analyst – Mike Edwards)
NEVADA HOSTS NEW MEXICO STATE AT MACKAY STADIUM
Nevada (3-1), following a 41-31 win at Boise State, hosts New Mexico State (1-5) for a 7:30 p.m. (PT) kickoff. Saturday’s contest will be broadcast on CBS Sports Network, with Jason Knapp (play-by-play), Ross Tucker (analyst), and Desmond Purnell (Sideline) on the call. This marks the 16th matchup with the Aggies and Nevada leads the all-time series 13-2. The Wolf Pack plays its fourth non-conference game of the season.
The Wolf Pack Radio Network will call the game as well on 94.5 FM with John Ramey (play-by-play) and Mike Edwards (analyst) in the booth, with the 60-minute pregame show to begin at 6:30 p.m. PT.
Nevada and New Mexico State face off for the 16th time in history on Saturday. Nevada is 13-2 against the Aggies, winning eight of its last 10 games. The last time the two teams met was in 2011 with Nevada securing a 48-34 victory in Las Cruces.
The two programs first played each other in 1992 when Nevada downed New Mexico State 35-21. The Pack then went on to win 10 of the next 11 matchups.
– Join the Nevada Wolf Pack and Renown Health for our annual Pink Out football game
– Together, we are supporting all those who are fighting the good fight against cancer
– Show your support for all those who are battling cancer by wearing pink
– The first 5,000 fans to enter Mackay Stadium will be given a pink beanie
– Renown’s Institute for Cancer is raising money for their patient assistance fund, which goes
directly to patients and their families who need additional financial support
– Donations can be made anytime through Venmo by sending a cash gift to @RenownFoundation
COMING UP NEXT
– Homecoming vs. Hawaii (Oct. 16)
– Theme – Paint the Town Blue
– For a full list of Homecoming events visit www.unr.edu/homecoming
PACK WINS BIG IN BOISE, MOVES TO 3-1
Nevada opened its 2021 season with a 22-17 victory over the California Golden Bears in Berkeley on Sept. 4. Prior to the win over Cal, Nevada’s last road win at a Power 5 team also came at Cal when Nevada defeated the Golden Bears 31-24 on Sept. 1, 2012. After Cal opened the game with a 14-0 lead, Nevada scored 22 unanswered points to lead the remainder of the game. Carson Strong threw for 312 yards and two touchdowns, posting his ninth 300-yard passing game of his career. Kicker Brandon Talton recorded his 12th multi-FG game of his career after going 3-for-4 for Nevada. Romeo Doubs finished with six catches for 83 yards and a touchdown, Cole Turner led all Pack receivers with seven catches (for 75 yards), and WR Tory Horton led the Pack with 94 receiving yards on three catches. Elijah Cooks recorded his first touchdown since the 2020 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl on Jan. 3, 2020. The Pack defense came up clutch to secure Nevada’s victory. Cornerback Isaiah Essissima, a transfer from Wake Forest, made his first interception in a Nevada jersey in his Wolf Pack debut, stopping a late fourth-quarter Cal drive with a pick. Sam Hammond and Daniel Grzesiak tallied sacks for the Pack, including Hammond’s 13-yard loss which resulted in a missed Cal field goal attempt. JoJuan Claiborne led the Pack defense with 10 tackles (eight solo), and shared a tackle-for-loss. The Pack is currently No. 1 in the nation with 4.25 sacks.
Nevada handled business on Sept. 11 in its first home game of the 2021 season. The Pack defeated Idaho State, 49-10. Carson Strong powered the Pack offense, throwing for 381 yards and four touchdowns. Strong completed 34 of 43 passes, including two touchdowns to Elijah Cooks, who finished with seven receptions for 89 yards. Devonte Lee recorded a 2-yard touchdown run late in the third quarter and caught a 15-yard touchdown pass early in the fourth. Cole Turner had a touchdown catch. Backup quarterback Nate Cox stepped in the game in the fourth quarter, delivering a 43-yard touchdown to Harry Ballard.
Nevada dropped its first game of the season to No. 25 Kansas State in Manhattan, Kan., on Sept. 18. Despite the 38-17 final score being in favor of the Wildcats, the Pack and Kansas State began the fourth quarter tied at 17. WR Romeo Doubs made 7 catches for 121 yards for a season high in yardage. His previous season-best was 83 yards on six receptions against Cal on Sept. 4. It marked his most receiving yards since he gained 133 yards on 5 receptions at Hawai’i on Nov. 21, 2020. Nevada secured its first conference win of the season in Boise, Idaho, on Oct. 2. The Pack defeated the Broncos, 41-31, in a packed Albertson’s Stadium. Carson Strong threw for 263 yards and a touchdown while running back Toa Taua rushed for 124 yards and two touchdowns. Nevada snapped its six-game losing streak to the Broncos, dating back to 2010. Nevada last won in Boise in 1997. Tristan Nichols forced a fumble on Boise State quarterback Hank Bachmeier. Then, five plays later, Taua punched it into the end zone from 12 yards out to give Nevada a permanent lead. Placekicker Brandon Talton had a strong game, going 4-for-4 in field goal attempts and 3-for-3 on PATs.
GAME OF FIRSTS
Backup quarterback Nate Cox stepped into the Idaho State game in the fourth quarter, tossing a 43-yard touchdown pass to Harry Ballard for both of their first career touchdown passes and receptions in a Wolf Pack uniform. Senior running back Devonte Lee also made his first-career touchdown reception, a 15-yard pass from Carson Strong with 11:03 left in the fourth quarter against Idaho State.
Isaiah Essissima recorded his first collegiate interception in his first night in a Wolf Pack uniform at Cal, grabbing a game-clinching interception with 04:29 left to play. Essissima, a Wake Forest transfer, started in his first game for Nevada and tallied four tackles and an interception.
PACK DEFENSE SHINES BRIGHT
The Nevada defense provided spark in the Pack’s routing of Idaho State on Saturday. Lawson Hall led the defense with 10 total tackles, including a sack and forced fumble. Tristan Nichols also had a strong output, totaling four tackles and three sacks for a combined loss of 17 yards. Daiyan Henley racked up eight tackles and recorded two pass break ups. The Pack defense combined for eight sacks and two forced fumbles, including a strip-sack by Tristan Nichols that resulted in a Dom Peterson return for a touchdown. The Pack limited Boise State (10/2) to just 22 total rushing yards and recorded six sacks for a loss of 57 yards.