UNM Football currently has 18 players from the state of New Mexico on their roster, and guys like Teton Saltes from Valley High School, and Marcus Williams from Cleveland High School, have a strong chance at earning starting spots next season. However, there are some local walk-on guys that are also showing promise.
“We have some young local talent, guys that have invested in the program that I think are right on the verge of probably being rewarded for it, as in scholarship and definitely rewarded by the opportunity to get on that field and play a little bit,” said UNM Head Football Coach Bob Davie.
Andrew Erickson is a Manzano High School grad and he has shown that he can be a treat as a slot receiver in this offense. He is 6-foot-2 and has great hands.
“He can run, kind of a wiry guy that again, I really believe can help this football team,” said Davie.”Size and speed, I bring a lot of. I am one of the bigger slot receivers that we have, and so I think I use that to my advantage going up against nickels and outside linebackers, and good hands,” said redshirt freshman receiver Andrew Erickson.
Another local receiver has caught the attention of this UNM coaching staff, as La Cueva grad Reece Wilkinson has shown that he can bring a lot of enthusiasm to this team.
“Superstar, that’s my nickname for him, I mean, he is a superstar. His high school coach and one of his high school teammates was out here the other day and I said, ‘He is very confident,’ and I said, ‘Bordering on cocky right?’ and they said, ‘Yes.’ But he is a guy. He is fun to watch as a player,” said Davie.
Wilkinson suffered a torn ACL last fall and has battled back to get to where he is. Reece feels like he will be ready come fall camp this year.
“I think definitely a positive attitude is one of the big things that I bring. I just try to be a good teammate whenever I can, and then these past couple of months dealing with this knee injury. I really focused on the mental aspect of playing receiver, and I think mentally I am a better receiver than I have ever been, and now physically I am getting back to where I need to be,” said redshirt freshman Reece Wilkinson.
Hayden Wilson from Cleveland High School is showing that he belongs on this offensive line. Coach Davie doesn’t even like to call Wilson a walk-on guy, because he has been through this system and is a guy that has shown a lot of progression. Hayden is going into his junior season and has earned a lot more reps in spring practices. Not highly recruited out of high school, Wilson takes a lot of pride in playing at UNM.
“A lot of the schools that I went to, where D-2 and a lot of them didn’t think that I could make a D-I program. So, a lot of it is, that’s a lot of my driving force is to prove them wrong, that I do belong here,” said Hayden Wilson.