LAS CRUCES, New Mexico (KTSM) – New Mexico State offensive lineman Sage Doxtater was taken in the 2021 Canadian Football League draft, but elected to spurn the pros and return for his senior year with the Aggies.

That bet may have paid off in a big way.

Doxtater wasn’t selected in the 2022 NFL Draft, but just hours after it ended, Doxtater signed an undrafted free agent contract with the New Orleans Saints, he confirmed to KTSM on Saturday night.

Doxtater is a 6’7, 350 pound left tackle from London, Ontario, Canada, who originally came to New Mexico State as a 17-year-old in 2016. He was a part of the first New Mexico State football team to win a bowl game in 58 years in 2017 and stayed at NMSU for his final season in 2021 despite being drafted by the Toronto Argonauts of the CFL.

He performed well at his pro day earlier this month with multiple NFL teams in attendance. His size is very intriguing; he’s big even by offensive lineman standards. It’s unclear if the Saints will use him as a tackle, or move him to the interior of the line.

Doxtater wasn’t the only athlete with Borderland ties that signed an undrafted free agent contract on Saturday night. Duron Lowe, a defensive back who last played at UTEP in 2020, signed with the Super Bowl champion Los Angeles Rams.

Lowe played the 2021 season at Liberty University, making 31 total tackles and intercepting two passes after transferring to play for the Flames in the offseason.

While he was at UTEP, Lowe was arguably the Miners’ top cover corner. In two seasons (2019-2020), Lowe made 43 tackles with two interceptions and two forced fumbles. He was also a dangerous return man, taking a kickoff back for a touchdown in both 2019 and 2020.

The undrafted free agent route has been used as a pathway to the pros by local stars recently. After UTEP cornerback Nik Needham was not taken in the 2019 draft, he was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Miami Dolphins. Three years later, Needham is a starter in the Dolphins’ secondary.

Multiple other former UTEP and New Mexico State football players are also hoping to get signed as undrafted free agents soon, after none of them were taken in the 2022 NFL Draft.

Those players include UTEP defensive backs Walter Neil and Dy’vonne Inyang, offensive linemen Bobby DeHaro and Darta Lee and wide receiver Justin Garrett. New Mexico State wide receiver Jared Wyatt and defensive back Caleb Mills are also hoping to join Doxtater in the professional ranks.