Turns out, Luis Lopez won’t have to go far to continue his college football career.
Texas A&M University-Kingsville announced Thursday that the San Diego star running back would be a junior college midyear signee for this coming season. Lopez played two seasons at Trinity Valley Community College, earning the junior college national championship by leading the Cardinals to a 12-0 mark in 2014.
Lopez rushed for 1,240 yards on just 153 carries and found the end zone 18 times on the ground in his last season with Trinity Valley. He rushed for eight touchdowns in 2013 and added two career receiving touchdowns. At 5-foot-7 and 220 pounds, Lopez was a power back with breakaway speed.
At San Diego High School, he was a two-time all-state honoree in football.
Lopez is the third midyear junior college signee for the Javelinas, who are led by head coach Daren Wilkinson.
This summer, Lopez was set to attend Div. I Lamar University in Beaumont, but his plans fell through before August drills began. He ended up sitting out the 2015 season.
At Trinity Valley Community College, he played two seasons between 2013 and 2014 for the Cardinals.
In 2014, Lopez appeared in 12 games, collecting 1,240 rushing yards on 153 carries. He found the end zone 18 times on the ground, averaging 103.3 yards per game and 8.1 yards per carry. He added a receiving touchdown and finished with 14 receptions for 186 yards. Lopez also found the end zone in the first nine games of the season, beginning with two in 59-45 win over Tyler Junior College (Aug. 30).
He rushed for 152 yards in 77-28 win over Cisco Junior College (Sept. 13). He rushed three touchdowns twice, including a career-best 220 yards on 14 carries in 73-46 playoff win versus Tyler JC (Nov. 8). Trinity went 12-0 that season, including earning the Heart of Texas Bowl MVP en route to a junior college national championship.
In 2013, Lopez appeared in 11 games, tallying 63 rushes for 482 yards and eight touchdowns. He averaged 7.9 yards per carry and also recorded two receptions for 26 yards and a score. He returned four kickoffs and averaged 28.3 yards per return, including returning a kickoff for a touchdown. Lopez had three multi-touchdown performances, including three in season finale win versus Mesa. The Cardinals went 10-2 that season.
At San Diego High School. Lopez was a two-time all-state running back for San Diego High School (2011 and 2012).
In 2011, Lopez was the District 16-2A Most Valuable Player, all-district first team kicker, All-South Texas second team running back, KRIS-TV Channel 6 and Caller-Times Player of the Week, Padilla Poll first team all-state running back.
As a senior in 2012, he was All-District 16-2A MVP, All-South Texas first team running back, KRIS-TV Channel 6, Caller Times and Texas Football Magazine Player of the Week. He was picked for the Shiners East/West All-Star games and was a Padilla Poll first team all-state running back, Class-2A AP First Team All-State running back, Class-2A TSWA Third Team All-State running back. Lopez was also the state’s leading rusher from 1A to 5A. He was also picked for the THSCA North/South All-Star game and was Dave Campbell's Magazine 2A Region IV Player of the Year.
Lopez was also a two-time all-state powerlifting champion.