Skip to Content

NMSU’s Tony Sanchez announces 2024 signing class

nmsu generic helmet pic 1

(Courtesy: NMSU Athletics)

LAS CRUCES, New Mexico - Wednesday afternoon, Head Coach Tony Sanchez introduced his first signing class as the new leader of the Aggie football program.

Including a pair of early signees, the Aggies added 23 new student-athletes during this signing period.

The list of newcomers is comprised of six Division I transfers, four true freshman, 12 junior college transfers and one class of 2022 signee.

Amid the transfers coming in from fellow FBS programs, four are joining the Aggies immediately after a stint with a Power Five program as NM State adds players from Arizona State, Iowa State, Kentucky and Oklahoma State.

By position, NM State brings on three quarterbacks, seven defensive backs, five defensive linemen, four offensive linemen, two wide receivers, one tight end one linebacker.

Meanwhile, the Aggies added five freshman, seven sophomores, seven juniors and three seniors.

Parker Awad | So. | 6-0 | 190 | QB | Huntington Beach, Calif. | Edison HS | Golden West College
High-level playmaker who threw for 1,223 yards and 12 touchdowns while completing over 50% of his passes as a freshman at Golden West College. A capable runner, Awad also rushed for nearly 20 yards per game at Golden West. In high school, the Huntington Beach native also earned All-CIF Division I and 2022 All-Orange County Second Team honors while being named Sunset League Offensive Back of the Year and the 2022 Daily Pilot Football Dream Team Player of the Year following his senior season at Edison High School. Last season, Awad also played alongside fellow 2024 NM State signee Hayden Harlan at Golden West.

Jakobe Campbell | Fr. | 6-0 | 180 | DB | Zephyrhills, Fla. | Zephyrhills High School
Is an impressive athlete who can play multiple positions on the defensive side of the ball. Played three years at the varsity level at Zephyrhills High School where he compiled 67 total tackles, including 16 solo tackles as a senior. Campbell also hauled in six interceptions during his high school career.

Josiah Cox | So. | 6-0 | 195 | DB | San Diego, Calif. | Lincoln High School | Arizona State
Joins the Aggies after one season at Arizona State where he appeared in 10 games and tallied three tackles and half of a sack for the Sun Devils. Committed to ASU following a standout season at Lincoln High School in San Diego where he was listed as a top 100 recruit in California's 2023 class. At Lincoln, Cox was named the San Diego Defensive Player of the Year while leading the Hornets to the CIF State DI-AA title. En route to a state championship, Cox recorded 40 total tackles, four tackles for loss, two sacks and three interceptions.

Henry Davis III | So. | 6-2 | 260 | DL | San Marcos, Calif. | Mission Hills HS | Palomar CC
Davis III brings size and athleticism to an Aggie defensive line who lost some key pieces in the offseason. After starring as a tight end and defensive lineman for a Mission Hills High School team which finished 8-3, Davis III stayed in his hometown of San Marcos, Calif., where he spent one season at Palomar Community College. With the Comets, he compiled 22 total tackles and recorded one interception.

Naki Fahina | Sr. | 6-0 | 280 | DL | Hawthorne, Calif. | Lawndale HS | UNLV
Teams up with Head Coach Tony Sanchez for the second time in his collegiate career after being originally recruited to play for Sanchez at UNLV. Fahina ultimately stayed at UNLV following Sanchez's departure and appeared in 27 total games across five seasons. With the Runnin' Rebels, he tallied 36 total tackles, including a career-best 18 in 2021. Was a senior leader in his final season at UNLV – representing the team's defense at the annual Mountain West Media Days. Fahina was also named Academic All-Mountain West twice and landed on UNLV Dean's Honor List for a total of four semesters.

Hayden Harlan | So. | 6-4 | 285 | OL | Clackamas, Ore. | Clackamas HS | Golden West College
Spent one season at Golden West College in Huntington Beach, Calif., where he played alongside future Aggie teammate and fellow 2024 commit Parker Awad. With Harlan serving as a key component of the offensive line, Golden West compiled an 8-3 overall record, including going 6-1 in conference play.

Elijah Harvey | So. | 6-4 | 315 | OL | Fresno, Calif. | Washington Union HS | Reedley College
Offensive tackle with elite size and exceptional feet who joins the Aggies following one season at Reedley College. With Reedley, Harvey helped the Tigers to a 7-4 overall record while earning all-conference honors.

Desmin Hatfield-Rushton | So. | 6-3 | 190 | DB | Sacramento, Calif. | Capital Christian HS | American River College
A big, athletic corner who appeared in 11 games while tallying 32 total tackles as a true freshman at American River. He also forced one fumble and recorded a team-best four interceptions as the Beavers finished the season with a perfect 5-0 record in conference play and a 10-2 overall record on their way to reaching the 2023 3C2A Northern California State Championship game.

Deuce Hogan | Jr. | 6-4 | 208 | QB | Southlake, Texas | Grapevine Faith Christian | Iowa | Kentucky
Highly touted recruit who will transfer in following two seasons at Kentucky. Saw action in four games with Iowa and Kentucky. The former Wildcat and Hawkeye was once rated as the 15th best pro-style quarterback in the nation in the Class of 2020 after throwing for 8,192 yards and 100 touchdowns throughout his high school career at Faith Christian Academy where he holds school records in wins, touchdowns, yards and completions.

Lanar Kelley Jr. | Jr. | 5-10 | 190 | DB | Jacksonville, Fla. | Trinity Christian Academy | Sierra College
Lockdown corner who spent last season at Sierra College in California where he accumulated 31 total tackles and one interception which he returned for a touchdown. Posted a career best six solo tackles, including two tackles for loss against Santa Rosa on Nov. 11. Played a significant role on at Trinity Christian Academy where he shined on offense as a sophomore and junior before switching to the defensive side of the ball.

Alex Lines | Jr. | 6-6 | 250 | TE | Gilbert, Ariz. | Higley HS | UNLV | Garden City CC
Tight end with a next-level build who now lands at his third Division I school and joins a position group that lost a pair of senior starters. Lines most recently played at Garden City and appeared in 10 games. He also spent two seasons at Arizona and appeared in 15 total games and hauled in 11 catches for 146 total yards for the Wildcats. Prior to his time in Tucson, he spent time at UNLV where he appeared in five games as a true freshman during the shortened 2020 season. Out of high school, Lines was rated as a top 25 tight end for the class of 2019.

DaMarco Moorer | Jr. | 6-1 | 185 | S | Moreno Valley, Calif. | Riverside HS | Riverside City College
Physical safety who plays downhill and joins the Aggie team after two seasons at Riverside City College where he tallied an impressive 94 total tackles in just two seasons with the Tigers. Following a 2022 season in which he finished third in tackles on the RCC defense with 50 total and 35 solo, Moorer was rated the No. 21 junior college safety in the country. As a sophomore, Moorer also landed on the 2022 All-America Community College First Team Defense.

Avery Morris | Sr. | 6-2 | 225 | LB | Atascocita, Texas | Atascocita HS | UTSA
High-level transfer from UTSA where he blossomed into one of the Roadrunners' top defensive players during his four-year career with the former CUSA institution. In total, Morris recorded 92 tackles while logging time in 42 games. As a senior, Morris secured a career-best 42 tackles, including 28 solo takedowns. Additionally, he notched three tackles for loss, two sacks, and one forced fumble while appearing in the starting lineup four times in 2023.

Myles Norwood | So. | 6-2 | 190 | DB | St. Louis, Mo. | Trinity Catholic HS | Iowa State
As an elite track athlete at Trinity Catholic High School, Norwood won the triple jump (46-8) at the Missouri track and field state championships and finished fourth in the long jump – leading him to beginning his collegiate career as a track and field athlete at Iowa Western CC. He then chose to commit to Iowa State over offers from Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky and Syracuse. However, Norwood saw limited in his two seasons with the Cyclones – appearing in one game as a freshman. During his time in Ames, Iowa, Norwood landed on the Big 12 Commissioner's Honor Roll twice.

Brandon Nuñez | Sr. | 6-5 | 225 | QB | Mesa, Ariz. | Mountain View HS | Fullerton College
As a dual threat quarterback, Nuñez threw for 2,037 yards and 22 touchdowns in 10 games at Fullerton College last season. He also led the Hornets in rushing touchdowns with nine while averaging nearly six yards per carry to rank second on the team with 535 rushing yards. Nuñez also played a significant role as a freshman – playing in 11 games and throwing for 973 yards and nine touchdowns. At Mountain View High School, he compiled over 4,000 passing yards and 31 touchdowns across his junior and senior seasons. Was a high school teammate of fellow 2024 signee Malaki Ta'ase.

Antonio "TJ" Pride | Fr. | 5-11 | 170 | WR | Midlothian, Texas | DeSoto HS
Pride is a speedy playmaker that caught 54 passes for 988 yards and 13 touchdowns as a senior at Texas power DeSoto High School. Caught eight passes for 112 yards and one touchdown as he played a pivotal role in Desoto's 74-14 Texas 6A D-II state championship win. Pride is also an explosive return man and accumulated 497 kick return yards and 216 punt return yards during a three-year high school career at the varsity level.

Mateo Rodriguez | Fr. | 6-5 | 275 | OL | Chandler, Ariz. | Chandler HS
A three-star recruit according to and the No. 60 overall recruit in the state of Arizona, Rodriguez helped lead his team to an 8-3 overall record and a 3-1 record in Section 6A Premier. With Rodriguez's help, Chandler High School rushed for nearly 200 yards per game (197.4). He also served as a mainstay on the Wolves' offensive line which assisted a passing attack that threw for 186.5 yards per game and 21 touchdowns in 2023.

Nick Session | Jr. | 6-0 | 193 | S | Gardena, Calif. | East HS (UT) | Oklahoma State
Promising safety with top-tier talent that joins the Aggie secondary after spending four years in Stillwater, Okla., at Oklahoma State. Session contributed most on special teams with the Cowboys – appearing in 18 total games, including a career-high 11 games in 2023 after missing the 2022 season due to injury. As a senior at East High School in Salt Lake City, Session was named All-Region 3 Overall Specialist MVP and was rated as a three-star recruit by 247Sports and ESPN while 247Sports listed him as the No. 13 player in the state of Utah.

Malaki Ta'ase | Fr. | 6-2 | 245 | DE | Mesa, Ariz. | Mountain View HS
Rated a three-star edge rusher and the No. 40 overall recruit in the state of Arizona in 2022, Ta'ase begins his collegiate career at NM State this spring. He was originally committed to play at Nevada, however, he decommitted shortly after the departure of Head Coach Jay Norvell. Was a teammate of fellow 2024 Aggie signee Brandon Nuñez at Mountain View High School in 2018. While at Mountain View, Ta'ase was a four-year contributor – playing in 36 games and compiling over 200 tackles. This included a sophomore campaign in which he recorded a team-high eight sacks while adding 74 tackles.

Enzo-Pierre Tayou | Jr. | 6-2 | 280 | DT | Lawndale, Calif. | Lawndale HS | Long Beach City College
A game wrecker that can play multiple positions on the defensive line, Tayou joins the Aggies following two seasons at Long Beach City College where he appeared in 20 games and racked up 67 total tackles. He is also coming off a career year in which he finished the season with one fumble recovery and 13 tackles for loss, including five sacks.

Ta'avili Tuitama | Jr. | 6-1 | 280 | DT | Mapusaga, America Samoa | Hillcrest HS | Snow College
Exceptional run stopper that becomes a member of the Crimson and White after two years at Snow College where he played a total of 16 games and tallied 49 tackles, including 40 last season alone. Burst onto the scene as a sophomore - racking up 3.5 sacks and 9.5 tackles for loss. As a senior at Hillcrest High School, Tuitama accumulated 48 tackles in 11 games and recorded four sacks.

Jake Waltman | Jr. | 6-4 | 295 | OL | San Diego, Calif. | Rancho Bernardo HS | Palomar CC
An offensive lineman with solid size and athleticism coming from Palomar Community College in California. Waltman also joins former Palomar teammate Henry Davis III in the 2024 Aggie signing class. With Waltman's help, the Comet offense averaged over 350 yards of total offense per game, including over 150 rushing yards per game. Chose the Aggies over offers from New Mexico, Buffalo and UMass.

Izeyah Wright | Fr. | 6-4 | 205 | Santa Rosa, Calif. / Montgomery HS
The Aggies are getting a special two-sport athlete with an incredibly high ceiling. The standout from California showed the ability take the top off the defense and high-point jump balls. As a senior, Wright hauled in 49 passes for 852 receiving yards and six touchdowns while also adding 20 tackles on the defensive side of the ball. The newest Aggie wideout also received offers from Colorado State, Fresno State and San Jose State during his recruiting period.

For complete coverage of NM State Football, follow us on Twitter (@NMStateFootball), Instagram (@NMStateFB) and like us on Facebook (NM State Football). You can also follow along with Aggie Football via

Article Topic Follows: NMSU

Jump to comments ↓

Author Profile Photo

Adrian Ochoa

Adrian Ochoa is ABC-7’s Sports Director.


KVIA ABC 7 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content