ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – From Gatorade New Mexico player of the year to only three carries a year later, former Rio Rancho running back, Zach Vigil took some time to adapt to the college game. Now entering his second year with the program, Vigil is starting to get some legitimate reps in practice as a running back for the University of New Mexico.

The running back room is possibly the deepest on the roster with returners like Christian Washington and Sherod White, as well as the University of Louisiana Monroe transfer Andrew Henry. The list goes on including Vigil and former Cleveland star Dorian Lewis.

With so much competition, Vigil has found a way to separate himself. “Zach is probably our best pass protector,” said coach Gonzales. “He’s smart, knows where to go, what holes to hit.”

Vigil has gotten seen some decent action during the first week and a half of spring practice and has been in the rotation with some of the other top players in the offense. Following a freshman season where he rarely touched the field, he’s embracing his blocking ability as a way to get some playing time.

“I pride myself in it,” Vigil said. “My dad and brothers played lineman in high school, so they taught me the basics of blocking when I was younger. I think it’s going to be a big factor getting me on the field. I think that’s going to be one of my roles as I continue to grow.”