There is a strong possibility that University of New Mexico senior quarterback Terry Wilson could be out for the season with an injured left elbow, coach Danny Gonzales said during his press conference on Tuesday.
Redshirt freshman quarterback Isaiah Chavez, who left Saturday’s 31-17 loss to UNLV during the second quarter with a right ankle injury, “will be fine for Saturday,” when the Lobos (3-6, 1-4 Mountain West) play at Fresno State (7-3, 4-2), a 24½-point favorite, Gonzales said.
Wilson has missed the past three games after he suffered a dislocated elbow on his non-throwing arm against San Diego State on Oct. 9. He continues to be evaluated but hasn’t been able to practice, Gonzales said.
“It’s transformed to be a lot worse than we hoped,” Gonzales said of Wilson’s injury. “We’re practicing with the guys we have available. We’ll keep rolling.”
Chavez, a former Rio Rancho High standout, led the Lobos to a 49-39 win against Fresno State in his first start last year in the Lobos’ season finale.
Chavez is not 100 percent but was able to practice on Tuesday, Gonzales said.
“Isaiah is a tough kid,” Gonzales “He was able to move around. We limited his reps so that the swelling won’t continue. We’ll have a better idea (on his running ability) on Thursday.”
Chavez and Wilson were not available for interviews after Tuesday’s practice due to treatment for their respective injuries, the school said.
THE FUTURE: Development of UNM quarterbacks and recruiting signal-callers will be part of the Lobos’ future of their offensive scheme, Gonzales said.
UNM’s second-year coach did not rule out adding another transfer quarterback during the offseason.
“That’s a possibility every year unless you have a Trevor Lawrence (at Clemson) that you know is going to be your starter,” Gonzales said. “… Trevor Lawrence was surrounded by unbelievable talent. We’re not surrounded by unbelievable talent. … You’re better off if you have someone with experience. That’s always an option.”
Wilson can try to gain a medical redshirt year from 2019 when he sustained a season-ending knee injury at Kentucky after two games. Gonzales and Wilson have not discussed that and it won’t be addressed until after the season. Earlier this season, Wilson said he did not plan to attempt for that medical redshirt year.
CJ Montes, a freshman from Paraclete High in Lancaster, California, has started one game, which was one of three games he has played in this season. The NCAA allows for a maximum of four games for players to be eligible for a redshirt year.
Bear Milacek, a freshman from Boulder Creek High in Anthem, Arizona, has not played this season.
TOUGH TRAE: UNM redshirt wide receiver Trae Hall, who suffered a broken left ankle Saturday, had surgery Monday and is expected to be practicing with the Lobos in the spring, Gonzales said.
Hall, who is from Henderson, Texas, converted from quarterback to receiver this season. He had eight catches for 52 yards and a touchdown in four games as a receiver. He sustained the injury after a 21-yard run when he was tackled at the UNLV 1-yard line on Saturday.
Gonzales said he admired Hall’s toughness and the receiver’s attempt to make it off the field on his own after the injury. Gonzales said that type of toughness typifies the program that he wants to build.
“I’m really disappointed for the young man,” Gonzales said. “I think he’ll have a big senior year. It’s too bad because he was coming into his own as a receiver, slot back.”
UNM at Fresno State, 5 p.m., 770 AM/96.3 FM, streaming on Stadium