Jan. 19, 2012
The University of New Mexico football team has added four midyear players who are enrolled in school for the spring semester and will participate in spring football.
The four players are: defensive back Darien Brunson of Mesa (Ariz.) Community College; quarterback Cole Gautsche of Cleveland High School in Rio Rancho, N.M.; quarterback David Vega of New Mexico Military Institute and defensive end Richard Winston of Chandler High School in Chandler, Ariz.
Brunson will be a sophomore after playing at Mesa his freshman season. He had 19 tackles with one interception and one fumble recovery in 2011. He played high school football at Higley High School in Gilbert, Ariz. He recorded 108 tackles with four interceptions and four forced fumbles his senior year.
Gautsche, the 2011 New Mexico Gatorade Player of the Year, threw for 3,087 yards with 39 touchdowns and four interceptions as a senior, leading the Storm to the 5A New Mexico state championship in December. He also had 23 rushing TDs. The Storm went undefeated this past season. Gautsche also had offers from UNLV and New Mexico State.
Vega set a New Mexico Military Institute school record with 2,829 passing yards in 2010 with 22 TDs and 13 interceptions in 2010. Last season, Vega threw for 2,819 yards with 28 TDs and 12 interceptions. He earned second-team All-Western States Football League honors. He also won two New Mexico 4A state championships and was an All-State quarterback at Goddard High School.
Gautsche and Vega represent two of the more decorated QBs in recent New Mexico high school football history.
Winston was an honorable-mention All-District I performer in 2011, as voted by the Arizona Republic. Chandler High School coach Shawn Aguano called Winston "a great character kid who wants to work."
Winston was also recruited by Washington State and Arizona State.