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RB Coach To Go to Syracuse

Texas O-Lineman Reconsiders UNM

The New Mexico Lobos have lost their running backs coach, according to multiple sources, and likely a prospective wide receiver, as well.

The website reported Thursday that UNM assistant DeAndre Smith is leaving to take a job at Syracuse. Smith and new Orange coach Scott Shafer worked together at Northern Illinois a decade ago.

Smith’s son, Ryan, a star wide receiver at Bishop Gorman High School in Las Vegas, Nev., had committed last month to joining his father at New Mexico. The younger Smith on Thursday confirmed to the Las Vegas Sun that his father was leaving UNM.

There was no comment regarding the elder Smith’s status from UNM on Thursday.

Ryan Smith also told the Sun he planned to take a recruiting visit to Duke University this weekend.

DeAndre Smith was serving his second stint as running backs coach at UNM. He worked for Rocky Long in 2008, then moved to UNLV after Long’s resignation after the ’08 season. Smith took a job at Illinois after UNLV coach Mike Sanford was fired. He was hired at UNM by Bob Davie in January last year.

Last season, under Smith’s watch, Lobos running back Kasey Carrier rushed for a school-record 1,469 yards.

NAJVAR RECONSIDERS: Reid Najvar, a Texas high school offensive lineman who announced a commitment to UNM in December, has changed his mind and plans to attend Kansas State.

“They treated me like family, treated me really well at New Mexico,” Najvar told “But at the same time, so did Kansas State. … I could really see myself with that program and being successful.”

Earlier this week, UNM got a commitment from Lamar Jordan II, a dual-threat quarterback from Centennial High School in Frisco, Texas.

ALL-STARS: Former Lobos Lucas Reed and Evan Jacobsen are scheduled to see action Saturday — Reed, a tight end, in the East-West Shrine Game and Jacobsen, a long snapper, in the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl.

Reed is one of three tight ends on the East (that’s right, East) roster. The others are D.C. Jefferson of Rutgers and Chris Pantale of Boston College.

The former Lobo could be catching passes from Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein, a Heisman Trophy finalist.

Jacobsen is the only long snapper on the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl’s National team roster.

The East-West Shrine Game, scheduled at 2 p.m. at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla., will be telecast on the NFL Network.

The NFLPA Collegiate Bowl, scheduled at 7 p.m. at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., will be telecast on ESPN2.

TABANNAH’S BACK: UNM has confirmed that sophomore cornerback Devonta Tabannah, twice suspended last season, has been reinstated.

Walk-on quarterback David Vega remains under suspension after being arrested in August on charges of unlawful possession of alcohol and attempting to conceal his identity. Vega’s court case is pending.
— This article appeared on page D3 of the Albuquerque Journal