ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – With every award bestowed upon him, University of New Mexico kick returner Carlos Wiggins is becoming more and more of a household name on a national level.
SB Nation has selected Wiggins as a second-team all-America kick returner, while College Sports Madness has named him a third-team all-America kick returner. The sophomore from Plano, Texas, is the nation’s leader in kick-return yardage with 1,303 and is the only player in the country with three returns for touchdowns.
His 29.6-yard average per return ranks fifth nationally.
Wiggins also earned College Sports Madness’ first-team all-Mountain West recognition. College Sports Madness also named senior punter Ben Skaer to first-team all-MW honors.
The Waterloo, Ill., product ranks seventh and leads the Mountain West with a UNM single-season best 45.8 yards per punt. The Lobos also rank 15th in the nation in net punting with an average of 39.6 yards per attempt.
Junior defensive end Brett Bowers (Ukiah, Calif.) earned second-team All-MW honors. He had 37 tackles, nine tackles for loss and six sacks (fifth best in the MW) in 11 games for UNM last season. He was tied for second in the conference and tied for 23rd nationally with three forced fumbles in 11 games.
Junior LaMar Bratton (Riverside, Calif.) earned second-team all-MW honors as well. Bratton led the offensive line in overall grade average four times. He was the team leader in knockdown blocks with 148 in 855 snaps in 2013. He made 11 starts at left guard and one start at center, his first start there since 2011. Bratton had 13 knockdown blocks in that game at Pittsburgh.
Senior running back Kasey Carrier (Pearland, Texas) earned third-team all-MW honors. Carrier ran for 1,112 yards in 10 games for the Lobos in 2013 to rank second in the conference and 16th in the country. He recorded 2,581 rushing yards and 24 rushing TDs during his junior and senior years combined at UNM. Carrier leaves as the No. 5 rusher in school history with 3,233 yards.
Senior left tackle Darryl Johnson (Baton Rouge, La.) also earned third-team all-MW accolades. He graded out the most consistently among UNM’s offensive linemen this season and was part of a Lobo rushing attack that is ranked seventh nationally with an average of 308.8 yards per game. UNM’s 40 rushing touchdowns this season were two short of the school record set in 1971.