Frank Thayer, head of the university's journalism department, said he was surprised to learn of Reyes' arrest.
"He is a top quality writer and has done some good work at The Round Up and in my classes," Thayer said. "I've known him for two and a half years and hate to see this happen."
According to a criminal complaint, the alleged victim is a 20-year-old NMSU student.
She awoke to allegedly find that Reyes had taken off her clothing and was performing a sex act on her.