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Latinos in College Football

Zach Calzada Highlights Week for Latinos in College Football

Eastern Michigan's José Ramirez starred on defense

Zach Calzada made this week’s choice easy. There are more than 100 Latinos in college football, and one of them quarterbacked his team over No. 1 Alabama this weekend.

Actually, two Latinos played crucial roles in Texas A&M’s 41-38 upset victory over Alabama on Saturday night at Kyle Field. Seth Small, the son of a Mexico City native, kicked the winning field goal as time expired. So Our Esquina is adding a special teams recognition to our weekly roundup of Latinos in college football.

At Our Esquina, where we amplify Latino voices in sports, arts and culture, we’re keeping track of all the Latinos playing college football. This is our weekly list of Latinos in college football. This is a look to see how they and their teams fared.  

We want to highlight their achievements and tell their stories during the season.

Here are our Offensive, Defensive and Special Teams Players of the Week.

Offensive Player of the Week, Zach Calzada 

Texas A&M junior quarterback Zach Calzada threw for three touchdowns, 285 yards and led the 18-point underdog Aggies to an upset win over No. 1 ranked Alabama. 

The previously unranked Aggies entered the home contest with confidence waning, having lost two straight games to Arkansas and Mississippi State.  The Aggies started the game hot and jumped out to a 14 point halftime lead. 

The Crimson Tide overcame that and another fourteen point deficit to eventually take a lead at 38-31 late with five minutes in the fourth quarter. 

The steely Calzada, a grandson of Cuban refugees, responded with four pass completions. The last one was a 25-yard touchdown to tie the game with three minutes remaining. A strong defensive effort forced the Crimson Tide to punt after just one set of downs and less than a minute off the clock. 

Calzada then led the Aggies on an eight play, 54-yard drive that ended with a 28-yard game-winning field goal by Seth Small. 

Latino Defensive Player of the Week José Ramirez

Eastern Michigan sophomore defensive end José Ramirez, a 6-foot-2, 251-pound from Lake Alfred, Fla., filled up the stat sheet against Miami of Ohio.

He had six tackles, one sack, a tackle for loss and five quarterback hurries. He also forced a fumble in the Eagles’ 13-12 homecoming win over Miami of Ohio. 

Latino Special Teams Player of the Week, Seth Small

Texas A&M kicker senior kicker Seth Small opened and capped the scoring for the Aggies in their victory over Alabama.

The son of a Mexico City native was peligroso, as he likes to say often in the morning on Game Day when his father Ricardo asks him how he feels.

Small was 2 for 2 on field goal attempts while also going perfect on his five PATs on a night his locker neighbor Zach Calzada starred.

Growing list of Latinos in College Football

Each week we hear of new Latinos College Football player. Last week we learned of Eastern Michigan’s Ramirez while watching him in person against Northern Illinois. 

This week, the new addition to our list is Jesus Echevarria, a defensive end at Washington State. Please let us know of other Latinos on college football rosters. 

Other noteworthy aspects of Latinos in College Football:

UTSA tight end sophomore Oscar Cardenas scored his first collegiate touchdown for the Roadrunners in a 52-46  win over the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers. The touchdown gave the undefeated Roadrunners a 24-21 lead just before halftime. The Roadrunners are tied with UTEP Miners atop the Conference USA West standings. UTSA’s athletic department is led by a Latina, Lisa Campos. 

Arizona State defensive line coach Robert Rodriguez was featured prominently during the Friday night ESPN broadcast of Sun Devils’ victory over Stanford. The Sun Devils also wore a Mayan- themed helmet during the game in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month.

Aguilar, LuisNAUKBYE
Alonso, MandyVirginia DL3 tackles, 2 solo, 1 TFL, 1 QB HurryW, 34-33Louisville
Araiza, Matt San Diego St.P/KFG- 1/1PAT- 4/4W, 31-7New Mexico
Aranda, Dave Baylor Head Coach W, 45-20West Virginia
Arias, Daniel Colorado WR BYE
Arroyo, ElijahMiami (FL)TEBYE
Arroyo, MarcusUNLVHead Coach BYE
Avalos, AndyBoise StateHead CoachW, 26-17BYU
Aybar, WilfredoStanfordLBNO STATSL, 28-10Arizona State
Banda, Ephraim Utah StateDef. Coord/SafetiesBYE
Barr-Mira, NicholasUCLAKFG- 2/2PAT- 4/4W, 34-16Arizona
Borregales, AndrésMiami (FL)KBYE
Calzada, ZachTexas A&MQB21-31, 285 YDS, 3 TD, 1 INT
2 rushes, 12 yds. 
W, 41-38Alabama 
Camarena, Evan Portland StateCB3 tacklesL, 42-35Idaho
Canales, Mike “Chico”Maryland Analyst L, 66-17Ohio State 
Cardenas, OscarUTSATE2 rec., 19 yds., 1 TDW, 52-46Western Kentucky
Cavazos, LejondOhio State CB1 tackle W, 66-17Maryland 
Coley, JamesTexas A&MTE CoachW, 41-38Alabama
Corral, MattOle Miss QB14/21, 287 yds., 2 TD
15 rushes, 94 yds., 2 TD
W, 52-51Arkansas 
Corrales, Beau North CarolinaWRNO STATSL, 35-25Florida State
Cristobal, Mario Oregon Head CoachBYE
Cropper, Jalen Fresno St. WRBYE
Cruz, Gunner Arizona  QB4/7, 48 yds, 1 rush, -7 yds.L, 34-16UCLA
Davila, PeterAlbany DB Coach L, 31-24William & Mary
Diaz, MannyMiami (FL)Head Coach BYE
Echevarria, Jesus Washington St. DL2 tacklesW, 31-24Oregon State
Escobar, Alex NM StateRB1 rush, 0 yds.2 rec., 20 yds. L, 55-28Nevada
Escobar, Ivan NM StateDLNO STATSL, 55-28Nevada
Fernandez, Aaron Southern UtahRGC/OLL, 41-20Sacramento State 
Figueroa, Nick USCDL4 tackles, 2 soloW, 42-26Utah
Flores, JoahNew Mexico WRNO STATSL, 31-7San Diego State
Flores, Justin Maine WR coach L, 33-23Elon
Fuente, Justin Virginia Tech Head Coach L, 32-29Notre Dame
Flores, ReynaldoUTEPRB1 rush, 8 yds. 
4 rec., 48 yds.
W, 26-13Southern Miss
Garcia, Elijah Rice DLBYE
Garcia, Jake Miami (FL)QBBYE
Garcia, JulioUNLVOLBYE
Garcia, Xavier Temple Def. GAW, 52-3Cincinnati
Garcia- Castaneda, Isaiah NM StateWR5 rec., 76 yds.L, 55-28Nevada
Gonzalez, Billy FloridaWR/ Passing Game Coord. L, 42-0Vanderbilt
Gonzales, Christian ColoradoCBBYE
Gonzales, Danny New Mexico Head CoachW, 31-7San Diego State
Gonzales, PaulTCUSafeties Coach L, 52-31Texas Tech
Gutierrez, Daniel UNLVKBYE
Hernandez, DanEastern Illinois OL CoachBYE
Hernandez, Zach Cal Poly DBNO STATSL, 45-7Montana State
Infante, Gabe TempleRB CoachL, 52-3Cincinnati
Jackson, Jim Rice TE Coach BYE
Longoria, EsaiMontana TechOLTotal Offense- 253 yds. L, 28-23College of Idaho
Loya, Logan UCLAWRNO STATSW, 34-16Arizona 
Lozano, AlexPortland StateLB3 tackles, 2 TFL, 1 sackL, 42-35Idaho
Madrigal, Anthony San Jose St.LBNO STATSL, 32-14Colorado State 
Magana, Jorge Montana TechLBNO STATSL, 27-23College of Idaho
Maldonado, DinoNM StateQBNO STATSL, 55-28Nevada
Maldonado, Gunner Arizona Safety5 tackles, 1 INTW, 34-16UCLA
Martinez, Adrian Nebraska QB18-28, 291 YDS, 3 TD, 1 INT
8 rushes, 38 yds., 1 TD
L, 32-29Michigan
Martinez, Cameron Ohio State SAF1 tackleW, 66-17Maryland 
Martinez, MarcTarleton St. LB coachBYE
Martinez, Willie TennesseeCB coach W, 45-20South Carolina
Mateos, Eric Baylor OLW, 45-20West Virginia
Matthews, JesseSan Diego State WR1 rec., 6 yds. W, 31-7New Mexico
Mejia, Christian Washington St. DLNO STATSW, 31-24Oregon State
Melo, Lucas Davenport University Run Game Coordinator/Defensive LineW, 18-13Northern Michigan
Mendez, Julian Ottawa University Offensive Coordinator W, 37-14University of St. Mary
Mirabal, AlexOregon OL Coach BYE
Montano, Abraham Fresno StateKBYE
Montero, AntonioRiceLBBYE
Morales, Kamari North Carolina TE1 rec., 21 yds, 1 TDL, 35-25Florida State
Navarro, Jaime San Jose St. OLTotal Offense- 267 yds. L, 32-14Colorado State
Navarro, Juan NCCU DL CoachL, 27-16Tennessee Tech
Navarro, Donny Illinois WR1 rec., 16 yds.L, 24-0Wisconsin
Nunez, JayEastern MichiganSp. TeamsAssoc. HCW, 13-12Miami (OH)
Olave, Chris Ohio StateWR7 rec., 120 yds, 2 TDW, 66-17Maryland 
Ornelas, JesseCentral Oklahoma RB CoachW, 49-9Northeastern State 
Ortega, Josh UTEPDE2 tackles, 1 sack, 1 TFL, 1 QB HurryW, 26-13Southern Miss
Ortega- Jones, Julian Texas St. WR NO STATSW, 33-31South Alabama
Ortiz, AngelOttawa Univ. (AZ)WR CoachW, 48-6Texas College
Pacheco, IsaihRutgersRB11 rushes, 47 yds.

L, 31-13Michigan State
Padilla, DavidCharleston Southern Ass’t AD for FootballL, 31-24Robert Morris 
Pagan, Justice Portland StateLBNO STATSL, 42-35Idaho
Perales, David Fresno StateDLBYE
Ponce, Frank Appalachian State Offensive Coordinator BYE
Ramirez, JoséEastern MichiganDE6 tackles, 3 solo, 1 sack, 1 TFL, 5 QB Hurries, 1 forced fumble W, 13-12Miami (OH)
Ramirez, Manny Texas SouthernOL Coach W, 35-31Southern 
Regalado, MarcoWashington StateDirector of On-Campus RecruitingW, 31-24Oregon State
Restrepo, XavierMiami (FL)WRBYE
Reveles, MiguelLa VerneOffensive CoordinatorL, 51-7Redlands 
Rivas, Eddie Texas StateOLTotal Offense- 400 yds. W, 33-21South Alabama 
Rivas- Sandoval, CesarSoutheastern University Head CoachL, 34-10Ave Maria 
Rodriguez, Anthony Portland StateTE1 rec., 2 yds. L, 42-35Idaho
Rodriguez, Chris Kentucky RB16 CAR, 147 YDS, 1 TD
1 rec., 3 yds., 1 TD
W, 42-21LSU
Rodriguez, DrewTowson St. QB coachW, 21-14Stony Brook
Rodriguez, JacobVirginia RB1 rush, 1 yard2 rec., 13 yds. W, 34-33Louisville
Rodriguez, JoelFIUOL coach L, 45-33Charlotte
Rodriguez, Juan Fresno State TEBYE
Rodriguez, Justin UTSARBNO STATSW, 52-46Western Kentucky
Rodriguez, MalcolmOklahoma St.LBBYE
Rodriguez, OscarAkronAssoc. HC/ ILBW, 35-20Bowling Green
Rodriguez, Robert Arizona St.DL coachW, 28-10Stanford 
Rojas, Manny Delaware Def. CoordinatorL, 22-15Rhode Island
Rubio, Cruz Cal Poly LSNO STATSL, 45-7Montana State
Sanchez, AngelMontana TechCB1 tackles, 2 Pass BreakupsL, 27-23College of Idaho
Santa Cruz, Victor Hawaii Defensive Ends coachBYE
Santana, Bryce New MexicoDENO STATSW, 31-7San Diego State
Santana, JuanCarlos Tulsa WR1 rec., 11 yds. W, 35-29Memphis 
Segura, Justin NM StateDLNO STATSL, 55-28Nevada
Silva, Cesar Fresno StateKBYE
Small, SethTexas A&M KFG- 2/2, PAT- 2/2W, 41-38Alabama
Sori-Marin, MarianoMinnesota LBBYE
Soto, AnthonyLenoir-Rhyne Offensive Coordinator/ /OLW, 38-31Tusculum 
Steele, Chris USCCB1 tackle, 1 pass defendedL, 42-26Utah
Umana, Orlando Ole MissOL611 total yardsW, 52-51Arkansas
Velazquez, AlonzoWyoming OLTotal Offense- 257 yds.L, 24-14Air Force
Ybarra, AustinMontana TechLBNO STATSL, 27-23College of Idaho

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