Lobo football: Kiehne set to transfer to UNM - Albuquerque Journal

Lobo football: Kiehne set to transfer to UNM

Rio Rancho’s Zach Vigil (21) is lifted up by his teammate Cayden Romero (75) after a touchdown this past season vs. Volcano Vista. The two teammates and friends are planning to sign letters of intent with New Mexico. (Mike Sandoval for the Albuquerque Journal)

This story has been updated. Tyler Kiehne announced on Tuesday night he is transferring to UNM.

When Danny Gonzales was hired as University of New Mexico football coach in December of 2019 he tried to recruit former Los Lunas standout Tyler Kiehne to the Lobos, but Gonzales was a little late as Kiehne had already committed to UCLA.

However, Gonzales was able to lure him back “home,” after Kiehne recently entered the transfer portal.

Kienhe, a 6-foot-3, 250-pound defensive lineman, said on Twitter on Tuesday night that he is transferring to UNM. He has four years of eligibility remaining after he did not see game action with the Bruins this past season.

He was rated as a three-star recruit by 247sports.com, ESPN, and Rivals.com as a Los Lunas senior.

At UNM, Kiehne will reunite with his former Los Lunas teammate Bryce Santana, a defensive lineman for the Lobos.

ANKLE INJURY: Offensive line appears to be a priority when it comes to the Lobos’ 2022 recruiting class that will be joining the Lobos officially when the early signing period begins on Wednesday.

That priority might have taken a hit when Rio Rancho’s Cayden Romero suffered a broken right ankle during the New Mexico High School All-Star game on Dec. 4. But the 6-foot-5, 330-pound offensive lineman, nicknamed “Diesel,” is in good spirits and remains confident he’ll soon contribute to the Lobos.

Romero said he’ll have surgery on the ankle on Thursday. He is unsure of the recovery time but he wants to be ready for preseason camp.

“When I broke it, I looked down and I saw my ankle,” Romero said. “I was just like, ‘Man, it’s going to suck the next few weeks.'”

Romero said an all-star teammate fell directly on the ankle and it bent inward. He said the injury was reminiscent of Dallas Cowboys’ quarterback Dak Prescott’s that ended his 2020 season.

Romero will be signing with the Lobos on Wednesday in the Rio Rancho High gym at 2 p.m. with fellow Ram, running back Zach Vigil, the Gatorade New Mexico Player of the Year who is also going to New Mexico.

“It’s really cool because we’ve become like best friends,” Romero said. “It’s just cool to go to the same school as him and play on the next level together.”

At that same time on Wednesday, Gonzales will have a press conference at UNM to talk about the 2022 recruiting class.

Gonzales will be at Revel Entertainment Center in Albuquerque for a signing party that starts at 5:30 p.m.

Hunter Haemker, a 6-3, 215-pound linebacker from La Cueva High who committed to the Lobos in June, is also among the UNM signees on Wednesday.

DEFENSE LOADING UP: The Lobo defense has shown significant improvement in the two years since Gonzales returned to UNM and brought in Rocky Long as defensive coordinator.

The defense is expected to take greater steps forward with some gems in the 2022 recruiting class, including defensive end David Rowaiye and linebacker Marquis Jones.

Rowaiye, a 6-foot-5, 265-pounder from Southeast High in Oklahoma City, is considered an athletic defensive lineman with Power Five talent. Baylor also offered him a scholarship, according to 247sports.com. He announced his commitment to the Lobos last month and is expected to sign with the Lobos on Wednesday.

Jones, who is 6-5, 215 pounds, starred for Trinity Catholic in Ocala, Florida. He is rated as a 3-star linebacker by 247sports. com. Jones, who committed in September, also had an offer from Coastal Carolina.

Kalen Woods is an addition to the class who announced his commitment via Twitter on Tuesday. He is a 6-3, 170-pound safety from Fremont High near Oakland, California.

Among the highlights during his senior season: he recorded four interceptions, including two returned for touchdowns in a 42-0 win over Oakland.

TRANSFERS: Collin James, a 6-foot-4, 285-pound offensive lineman from Abilene Christian, JC Davis, a 6-5, 295-pound offensive lineman from Contra Costa College in California, and Will Dennis, a 6-4, 240 pound tight end from Coffeyville Community College in Kansas, announced they are transferring to UNM, via Twitter recently.

James, who played center for Abilene Christian, also has junior college football roots, as he began at Lackawanna College in Scranton, Pennsylvania. He has three years of eligibility remaining.

Davis started every game at left tackle for Contra Costa. He also received an offer from Boise State.

Home » From the newspaper » Lobo football: Kiehne set to transfer to UNM


Albuquerque Journal and its reporters are committed to telling the stories of our community.

• Do you have a question you want someone to try to answer for you? Do you have a bright spot you want to share?
   We want to hear from you. Please email yourstory@abqjournal.com

taboola desktop

1
UNM earns national honor for football communications operation
College
The University of New Mexico's athletic ... The University of New Mexico's athletic communications department has won a 'Super 11' award bestowed by the Football Writers Association of America, which recognizes ...
2
Lobo hoops notebook: Pitino says roster is set, Sandia ...
ABQnews Seeker
Lobo men's basketball coach Richard Pitino ... Lobo men's basketball coach Richard Pitino says he's happy with the program's recruiting hall this offseason.
3
Lobo baseball to wrap season with home series vs. ...
Baseball
The Lobos (20-31, 9-18 Mountain West) ... The Lobos (20-31, 9-18 Mountain West) begin their final series of the season Thursday at 6 p.m. at home vs. Air Force (25-26, 13-14). ...
4
Lobos fade in final round, finish 10th at NCAA ...
College
The University of New Mexico men's ... The University of New Mexico men's golf team shot 19-over par Wednesday and fell off the pace in the final round of the NCAA ...
5
Michael Cunningham: My solution for Nick Saban's concern that ...
College
Nick Saban is quite a selfless ... Nick Saban is quite a selfless guy. He's the undisputed coaching king of college football over the past 15 years. Saban's Alabama program is ...
6
LSU guard says he's joining New Mexico State basketball
College
Xavier Pinson, a guard for this ... Xavier Pinson, a guard for this past season's NCAA Tournament team at LSU, announced in Instagram Wednesday that he is transferring to New Mexico ...
7
Soccer: NMU adds 3 to U-23 roster
Pro
New Mexico United on Tuesday announced ... New Mexico United on Tuesday announced the addition of three players to its initial U-23 roster. They are defender Larsen Rogers, goalkeeper Anthony Muñoz ...
8
UNM football: Juco QB Jensen commits
College
Junior college quarterback Jake Jensen announced ... Junior college quarterback Jake Jensen announced Tuesday on social media he has committed to attend the University of New Mexico. Last fall as a ...
9
Lobos complete sweep of Aggies
Baseball
State bragging rights still mean something ... State bragging rights still mean something to the University of New Mexico baseball team. In what ...