You love your college football team. Now you can celebrate with a custom craft brew

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.  — One is a special recipe designed to appease even the most snobby of craft beer drinkers. The other is billed as a mellow ale with hints of caramel and the breezy aroma of New Mexico’s high desert.

Officials at New Mexico’s two largest public universities are unveiling custom-made brews just ahead of their first round of fundraisers as the fall sports season kicks off.

New Mexico State, the University of New Mexico and Colorado State University are now among the handful of U.S. colleges and universities to have licensing agreements for branded beers, a move aimed at boosting marketing exposure for the schools and generating more revenue at a time when fundraising has become more challenging for higher education institutions nationwide and lawmakers look to trim their budgets.

“This is a very recent innovation, if you will,” said NMSU President Garrey Carruthers, noting that school officials are unsure of how much money it will bring in for Aggie athletics.

To be unveiled at Bosque Brewing Co.’s taproom in Las Cruces on Thursday, NMSU’s “Pistol Pete’s 1888 Ale” pays homage to the Aggies’ popular gun-slinging mascot and recognizes the year the university was founded.

The beer will be available first on draft at Bosque’s taprooms and at university sports and fundraising events. By early next year, it will be ready for statewide distribution — packaged in special cans that are expected to feature the school’s colors and fight song. Designs are awaiting regulatory approval.

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