- Associated Press - Thursday, October 27, 2016

New Mexico State (2-5) at No. 9 Texas A&M; (6-1), 7:30 p.m. (ESPNU)

Line: Texas A&M; by 43½.

Series Record: First meeting.

WHAT’S AT STAKE

Texas A&M; looks to get back on track after suffering its first loss of the season last week to top-ranked Alabama. If the Aggies don’t lose again they could have an outside chance at reaching the College Football Playoff. But first they’ll have to avoid a letdown against New Mexico State as they take a break from SEC play before traveling to Mississippi State next week.

KEY MATCHUP

New Mexico State’s pass protection vs. Texas A&M;’s pass rush. New Mexico State is tied for 111th in the nation after allowing 21 sacks this season. Texas A&M; has piled up 23 sacks, which ranks 12th in the country. Myles Garrett leads the Aggies with four sacks and Daeshon Hall and Jarrett Johnson have 3 1/2 each. Garrett and Hall have also combined for 18 quarterback hurries.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

New Mexico State: QB Tyler Rogers. He has thrown for 2,008 yards with 10 touchdowns and 11 interceptions this season. Rogers leads the Sun Belt Conference in yards passing per game with 286.9 yards and total offense with 320.3 yards.

Texas A&M;: QB Trevor Knight. Knight has 1,664 yards passing with 11 touchdowns and six interceptions. He’s also a threat to run and has 526 yards rushing with nine more scores.

FACTS & FIGURES

New Mexico State’s last win over a ranked opponent came in 1999 when the team beat No. 22 Arizona State. … Saturday will be the first time Texas A&M; has played a team from the Sun Belt since a 21-16 win over Louisiana-Monroe in 2014. … Texas A&M; ranks third in the SEC by averaging 251.4 yards rushing a game. … New Mexico State LB Rodney Butler leads the nation with 102 tackles. … Texas A&M; WR Christian Kirk leads the SEC in receptions with 49. … Texas A&M; is looking for its 22nd straight non-conference win at home. The team’s last home loss to a school outside of the league came in a 2008 loss to Miami.

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AP college football website: collegefootball.ap.org

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