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Arizona Wildcats add New Mexico State DL Roy Lopez for 2020
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Arizona Wildcats add New Mexico State DL Roy Lopez for 2020

Utah State Aggies quarterback Jordan Love (10) is hit as he throws by New Mexico State Aggies defensive lineman Cedric Wilcots II (10) and New Mexico State Aggies defensive lineman Roy Lopez (51) during the second half.

Arizona added much-needed depth to its defensive line on Sunday, when New Mexico State graduate transfer Roy Lopez signed with the Wildcats. 

The 6-foot-2-inch, 310-pound defensive tackle, who entered the NCAA transfer portal as a graduate transfer on Monday, registered 137 tackles and eight sacks in four seasons with the Aggies. Lopez already has experience playing at Arizona Stadium from when New Mexico State outlasted Utah State 26-20 in overtime to win the 2017 Arizona Bowl. 

The Gilbert Mesquite High School product only played in four games in 2019 after sustaining a leg injury against Washington State, preserving another year of eligibility. 

Lopez's father, Roy Lopez Sr., formerly coached at Sunnyside High School for three seasons. Before moving to Tucson, the older Lopez was Tempe Marcos de Niza High School's football coach for a decade, winning a total of 88 games. 

New Mexico State defensive lineman Roy Lopez (51) in the second half during the Arizona Bowl NCAA college football game against Utah State, Friday, Dec. 29, 2017, in Tucson, Ariz. New Mexico State defeated Utah State 26-20 in overtime. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

The younger Lopez should compete for significant playing time under UA's first-year defensive line coach Stan Eggen, who's coached against Lopez during his time with the New Mexico Lobos. Returning interior defensive linemen for UA include Trevon Mason, Myles Tapusoa and Mykee Irving. 

The Wildcats also added New Mexico grad transfer Aaron Blackwell, Southern California defensive tackle Dion "Tank" Wilson and Chicago native Shontrail Key to its 2020 recruiting class. 

Arizona has signed 26 newcomers for the '20 season. 


Ex-Arizona linebacker Tony Fields lands notable Power Five offers

Arizona linebacker Tony Fields II (1) gets away with a hand in the face mask as he brings down Utah wide receiver Demari Simpkins (3) in the third quarter of their Pac-12 game at Arizona Stadium, Tucson, Ariz., Nov. 23, 2019.

Former Arizona linebacker Tony Fields officially entered the transfer portal as a grad transfer earlier this week and has drawn some attention from notable programs across college football. 

Since his departure from UA went public, Fields has landed offers from Texas, West Virginia, UCLA, USC, Utah, Boise State and Minnesota. 

Contact sports content producer Justin Spears at 573-4312 or jspears@tucson.com. On Twitter @justinesports


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Sports producer

Justin writes stories and produces digital content about UA football and basketball and high school football. A Tucson native, Justin graduated from the UA in 2017 and is the host of the Wildcast Podcast and a radio host on ESPN Tucson.

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