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Kevin Concepcion

N.C. State’s Kevin Concepcion adds to historic season

Kevin Concepcion has fifth multi-TD game of the season

North Carolina State’s Kevin Concepcion is proving to be more than a freshman All-America Team candidate. The dynamic freshman from Charlotte, N.C., is the straw that stirs the Wolfpack’s drink.

Concepcion caught two touchdowns for the second consecutive game and the fifth time this season. Not bad for a 3-star recruit. He accounted for 186 yards of offense in a 39-20 victory over North Carolina, earning Our Esquina’s Player of the Week honors for the third time this season.

Kevin Concepcion had seven catches for 131 yards and two touchdowns against the Tar Heels. He added 55 rushing yards on 11 carries. 

Concepcion is rewriting the Wolfpack record book. His 64 receptions and 10 touchdowns are both freshman records at N.C. State. With 767 receiving yards, Kevin Concepcion is within range of Koren Robinson’s freshman record of 853 yards.

Kevin Concepcion sets freshman standard

He leads all ACC freshmen in receiving yards, touchdowns and catches. Kevin Concepcion is seventh in the ACC in receiving yards. He is also second in the ACC in receiving touchdowns, one behind Florida State junior Keon Coleman.

Here’s how the rest of the Latinos in college football performed in Week 13: Oregon State’s Damien Martinez rushed for 38 yards on eight carries in a 31-7 loss against Oregon.

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Boston College quarterback Thomas Castellanos completed 15 of 25 pass attempts against Miami. He threw a touchdown pass and two interceptions in a 45-20 loss. Castellanos also rushed for 130 yards and a touchdown on 19 carries.

UCLA receiver Logan Loya had nine catches for 88 yards and a touchdown against Cal. Fernando Mendoza led Cal to a dominant 33-7 victory over UCLA. He completed 19 of 30 passes for 178 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions. 

Texas State’s Julian Ortega Jones had a 17-yard catch in a 52-44 victory over South Alabama. Hawaii running back David Cordero rushed for 52 yards on five carries. He added a two-yard catch in a 27-24 victory over Colorado State. Notre Dame freshman receiver Rico Flores Jr. had a five-yard catch in a 56-23 victory over Stanford. 

Xavier Restrepo shines again

Miami’s Xavier Restrepo had six receptions for 117 yards against Boston College. Elijah Arroyo added an 11-yard catch for the Hurricanes.

Joey Aguilar led App State to a 55-27 victory over Georgia Southern. He threw for 296 yards and four touchdowns with an interception while completing 23 of 36 pass attempts. He added 11 rushing yards on four carries.

Texas Tech running back Cam’Ron Valdez rushed for 17 yards on four carries against Texas. UTSA’s Oscar Cardenas made four catches for 21 yards and a touchdown in a 29-16 loss against Tulane. Freshman David Amador added two catches for 13 yards for the Roadrunners.

Kent State running back Gavin Garcia rushed for 84 yards on 21 yards in a 37-27 loss against Northern Illinois.

New Mexico State quarterback Diego Pavia led the Aggies to a 20-17 victory over Jacksonville State. He completed 23 of 34 pass attempts for 269 yards and a touchdown and two interceptions.

Defensive Player of the Week: Gunner Maldonado

Arizona’s Gunner Maldonado was all over the place for the Wildcats against Arizona State. The redshirt junior from Chandler, Arizona, had 10 tackles in a 59-23 victory.

Maldonado also had his first interception of the season and second of his career. He returned the interception 40 yards. Maldonado had not intercepted a pass since the 2021 season. 

Stanford freshman Jshawn Frausto-Ramos made three tackles and recovered a fumble against Notre Dame. Wilfredo Aybar added a tackle for the Cardinal.

Penn State’s freshman Tony Rojas had one tackle in the 42-0 rout of Michigan State. UCLA Kain Medrano had three tackles against Cal. Texas Tech’s Bryce Ramirez had one tackle against Texas. Miami freshman Raul Aguirre Jr. had two tackles against Boston College. 

UCF sophomore defensive back Nikai Martinez had three tackles in a 27-13 victory over Houston. Iowa’s Sebastian Castro had four tackles, including two for a loss, in a 13-10 victory over Nebraska.

Washington State’s Ron Stone Jr. led the Cougars with nine tackles in a 24-21 loss to Washington. Colorado State senior linebacker Justin Sanchez had six tackles against Hawaii. Wisconsin’s Gio Paez had one tackle against Minnesota. 

Jesus Machado stymies UTSA

Tulane linebacker Jesus Machado had a game-high 10 tackles in a 29-16 victory over UTSA. Syracuse defensive lineman Elijah Fuentes-Cundiff had a tackle in a 35-21 victory over Wake Forest. 

New Mexico State’s Gabriel Iniguez had two tackles against Jacksonville State. New Mexico’s Alec Marenco had 11 tackles in a 44-41 loss against Utah State. Gabriel Lopez added five tackles.  

Marshall defensive lineman Jalil Rivera-Harvey defended one pass against Arkansas State. Notre Dame defensive tackle Gabriel Rubio had a tackle against Stanford. Virginia Tech freshman safety Devin Alves had his first tackle of the season in a 55-17 victory over Virginia.  

Kent State’s Javier Duran had a tackle against Northern Illinois. Texas State’s Devin Martinez had a tackle against South Alabama. Wyoming’s Ryan Marquez had a tackle in a 42-6 victory over Nevada.

Special Team Player of the Week: Valentino Ambrosio

Redshirt senior Valentino Ambrosio had one of the best performances of his career while helping Tulane remain perfect in the American Athletic Conference. Ambrosio, a redshirt senior, was 3 of 3 on field goal attempts with a long of 47 yards.

The 47-yard field goal was Ambrosio’s longest of the season. Moreover, the three field goals tied his previous season-high. The 5-foot-9, 175-pounder added two PATs in a 29-16 victory over UTSA.

Iowa State kicker Chase Contreraz made six PATs in a 42-35 victory over Kansas State. UNLV kicker Jose Pizano made 1 of 2 field goals with four PATs against San Jose State. 

Miami kicker Andres Borregales made one of two field goal attempts and six PATs against Boston College. Louisville kicker Nick Lopez made four PATs in a 38-31 loss against Kentucky.

LSU kicker Damian Ramos made six PATs in a 42-30 victory over Texas A&M. Colorado kicker Alejandro Mata made a 47-yard field goal and two PATs in a 23-17 loss to Utah. 

Guajardo hits a 51-yarder

South Alabama kicker Diego Guajardo made a 51-yard field ago against Texas State. He was 1 of 2 in field goal attempts while adding a PAT.

Wake Forest punter Ivan Mora had a 43-yard punt against Syracuse. Old Dominion kicker Ethan Sanchez made a 37-yard field goal and two PATs in a 25-24 victory over Georgia State. 

Bowling Green kicker Alan Anaya made two of three field goal tries with a long of 35 yards. He added four PATs in a 34-10 victory over Western Michigan. 

Eastern Michigan kicker Jesus Gomez made one of two field goal tries with three PATs. New Mexico punter Aaron Rodriguez averaged 36.6 yards over his five punts. Toledo’s punter Emilio Duran averaged 39.5 yards over four punts in a 32-17 victory over Central Michigan.

Featured art courtesy of N.C. State football.

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