Mike Locksley, whose brief tenure as the University of New Mexico’s head football coach ended in 2011, and his wife Kia held a joint press conference with the Howard County Police Department on Sept. 3 to announce renewed efforts in the pursuit of knowledge about the murder of Locksley’s son Meiko. The day marked the three-year anniversary of Meiko Locksley’s murder. The 25-year-old was shot once in the chest on the 5500 block of Harpers Farm Road in Columbia, Md. He was later pronounced dead at the University of Maryland’s Shock Trauma Center.
On Aug. 27, perhaps the most famous football player ever to wear the cherry and silver uniform of the University of New Mexico posted an incendiary screed on Instagram denigrating NBA players’ brief strike of playoff games in protest of police brutality and structural racism. The players’ boycott was in response to the police shooting of 29-year-old Jacob Blake, a Black man, in Kenosha, Wisconsin on Aug. 23. Blake is paralyzed from the waist down, according to his lawyer, and remains hospitalized as of the publication of this article. UNM’s Black Student Union (BSU) followed with a strongly worded statement, released on social media on Sept. 2, rebuking what they said was Urlacher’s “horrific” interpretation of the events leading up to the near-fatal police shooting of Blake.
The University of New Mexico’s men’s club hockey team has decided to suspend the fall portion of its season. The team announced the decision on its official Facebook page on Aug. 18, becoming the latest UNM team sport to fall victim to COVID-19’s effect on the competitive sporting landscape. In the post, head coach Grant Harvey cited the team’s decision to comply with the University’s policy regarding contact sports as the reason for the fall season’s postponement. “It's with heavy heart that I relay that Lobo hockey will be suspended for fall to comply with our school's policy with contact sports,” Harvey wrote. “I know that many conferences have followed suit, and I have to support UNM's decision and hope to face a spring semester in a safe manner.”
Multiple reports have come in that the Mountain West Conference will suspend its fall 2020 sports season and will instead attempt to resume in the spring. The extraordinary move comes after weeks of speculation and concerns that moving forward with collegiate athletic events would exacerbate the coronavirus pandemic currently wracking the country. According to 247Sports, league presidents have decided to cancel the 2020 season due to player safety concerts and health concerns. “"I fully understand the impact of this outcome on our student-athletes, coaches, administrators and staff who work so hard daily to play the sports we all love, and I share in their disappointment,” Mountain West commissioner Craig Thompson said in a statement. “We will continue to navigate this pandemic together, overcome the obstacles and return to intercollegiate athletics at the earliest opportunity.
Nehemiah Cionelo, a redshirt sophomore on the University of New Mexico’s cross country team, held a virtual fundraiser called Footsteps for Families on Saturday, July 18, providing school supplies to low-income New Mexican families that have been negatively impacted due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 145 people attended the virtual event, according to Cionelo. Participants logged in 848 miles, and local businesses and individual donors contributed school supplies for every mile logged. Cionelo said participants logged their mileage online after they finished running, and also were told to follow the social distance guidelines imposed by the state. “Personally, I ran solo with a mask and encouraged those participating to do the same,” Cionelo said.
EL PASO — For the majority of Wednesday evening's USL Championship tilt between El Paso Locomotive FC and New Mexico United, the Albuquerque club displayed the crispness and confidence of a team who — in a fair and just existence — would have returned to the Land of Enchantment with a comfortable victory. "Man stands face to face with the irrational," wrote French journalist and philosopher Albert Camus in The Myth of Sisyphus. "The absurd is born of this confrontation between the human need and the unreasonable silence of the world." United (1-1-1) may take some solace in the position of the absurdists after controlling the better part of a match drenched in south Texas sweat, yet settling for a 2-2 draw with El Paso (1-0-2) at Southwest University Park in front of a sellout crowd of cardboard cutouts.
When COVID-19 forced the NCAA to cancel spring sports and eliminate the NCAA basketball tournament, the question arose over whether UNM fall sports would meet the same fate. While local outbreak fears still linger, other college athletic programs have started to have fall sport teams practice with strict guidelines. This includes regular COVID-19 testing for players and staff and practicing in smaller groups in an attempt to combat the virus’ spread. On July 1, UNM Athletics director Eddie Nuñez said that one of 88 individuals associated with the UNM football team — including players, coaches and staff — tested positive for COVID-19 after testing took place on June 27.
COLORADO SPRINGS — After 126 days, COVID-19 protocol stacked upon COVID-19 protocol and a seemingly endless wait for a return to soccer for New Mexico United supporters, the black and yellow returned to competition on a blistering Saturday evening in Colorado. The resumption of the USL Championship was a triumph for New Mexico, as a late Chris Wehan goal and stout defending saw United (1-1) take three points from and remain undefeated all-time against Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC (1-1). The 2-1 victory in front of a threadbare crowd of 1,000 spectators brought New Mexico to third behind Colorado Springs in the four-team Group C table with the weekend’s slate complete.
Former University of New Mexico men's basketball starters JJ Caldwell and Vance Jackson announced their intention to enter the NCAA transfer portal after another disappointing season which saw a midseason collapse marred by suspensions and injuries. With one year of college eligibility remaining, Jackson is expected to graduate and play immediately for his new school under the NCAA's graduate transfer rule. Jackson's 2019-20 season was hindered by injury during the second half of the season, causing him to miss five games. Following the Lobos' season-ending loss to Utah State in the second round of the Mountain West Conference (MWC) championship tournament, "Vegas" Vance told reporters that he was sure he'd be back at UNM next season.
Sam Choi, a sophomore on The University of New Mexico’s men's golf team, has been named to the 2020 Arnold Palmer Cup International Team for his outstanding performance this season. Choi, originally from the Republic of Korea, was one of two members from the Mountain West to earn a spot on this prestigious team, which mostly consists of individuals from Power-5 programs. The nod adds to an impressive list of accolades, as Choi was selected as a 2018-2019 Co-Freshman of the Year and has twice won Mountain West Golfer of the Week award.
The Mountain West Conference announced Thursday all spring sports and remaining Mountain West winter sports championships will be canceled due to concerns surrounding the COVID-19 outbreak. The cancelations follow the NCAA’s order to cancel all spring and winter events. Cancelations include the 2020 NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships, which were slated to take place at the Albuquerque Convention Center in downtown Albuquerque, New Mexico, this weekend. The conference’s Board of Directors announced the decision shortly after the NCAA canceled all of its nationwide winter and spring championship events. The board had previously held these events to an “indefinite suspension” until March 12.
The University of New Mexico’s baseball team captured three walk-off victories this weekend against Hofstra, which also gave them a sweep of the weekend’s games. The first game happened on Friday, March 6 and saw the Lobos win 12-11. UNM scored the first run of the game, which came on a single by Shane Podsednik and put the Lobos up 1-0. Hofstra, however, plated four runs in the top of the third, which gave them the lead.
A true tale of two halves, the University of New Mexico men’s basketball 2019-2020 season came to an end in the quarterfinal round of the Mountain West Championship tournament. After a promising 15-3 start, the Lobos (19-14, 7-11) stumbled to the finish line, entering the tournament on a 3-10 skid. UNM’s lackluster mark in conference regular-season play was good enough for the seventh seed in the 11-team conference tournament. The seeding drew UNM a play-in round matchup against San Jose State, with whom the Lobos split their two-game regular-season sla
This week, the University of New Mexico’s baseball team continued their home slate with a 3-1 series victory against the BYU Cougars. With the triumph, UNM improved to 8-3 this season. The series began with an 8-7 victory on Thursday, Feb. 27, at Santa Ana Star Field. The Lobos broke a ...
THE PIT — It was quite the swan song for seniors JaQuan Lyle and Corey Manigault. Saturday, Feb. 29 marked the University of New Mexico's senior night and the end of Lyle and Manigault's home collegiate careers. A surging Utah State team (23-8, 12-6 MWC) came into the game having won nine of its last ten games and clinching second place in the conference. It was only fitting that the tandem took control during the game's waning moments and lifted UNM (18-14, 7-11 MWC) to a stunning 14-point comeback, giving the Lobos a 66-64 victory in their final home game of the season.
THE PIT — Monday night's matchup against Air Force (8-20, 6-11 MW) marked the UNM women's basketball team's Senior Night, where the Lobos honored its final-year players — namely starters Aisia Robertson and Jordan Hosey. The first half was hauntingly slow as UNM managed just 22 points. 14 of the team's 21 turnovers came in the first two frames, as the Lobo offense outside of Robertson and Hosey's performances stalled.
THE PIT — In their second matchup of the season, the Lobos fell 95-76 to Boise State's Broncos after losing a halftime lead and an eventual fourth-quarter collapse. At their previous meeting at the beginning of December, the Broncos (20-9, 12-5 MW) beat the University of New Mexico (14-15, 5-11 MW) by a single point. During the game, the team and crowd alike dressed in pink to support breast cancer awareness, and survivors were recognized on the court during breaks in the tilt.
BOISE, IDAHO — 2020 hasn't been kind to the Lobos, to say the least. Sunday's 74-61 loss at Boise State (19-10, 11-6 MW) marked the University of New Mexico men's basketball team's 10th defeat since the start of the calendar year. It was the team's seventh loss in the last eight games. After entering 2020 with an impressive 13-2 mark, the Lobos now sit at 17-12, locked in seventh place in the Mountain West.
SANTA ANA STAR FIELD — The University of New Mexico baseball team swept its 2020 home opener last weekend against the University of Northern Colorado. The series kicked off on Friday, Feb. 21 with a 7-6 win against the Bears. Northern Colorado struck early, as UNM junior Aaron Makil gave up two of his three runs in the top of the fourth inning, putting the Lobos in an early hole. UNM bounced back in the bottom of the same frame with a Connor Mang score after Ediberto Reyes' sacrifice groundout. UNM scored again on back-to-back doubles by Harry Fullerton and Shane Podsednik, locking the score at 2-2.
This week, the University of New Mexico women's basketball team (14-14, 5-10 MW) played two games in Nevada, starting on Feb. 15 with an emphatic 80-64 win against the University of Nevada-Las Vegas (12-13, 8-6 MW) and concluded with an 86-78 overtime loss against the University of Nevada (14-12, 7-8 MW) on Feb. 19. Before heading into the UNLV game, Assistant Coach Bill Ferrara emphasized the importance of rebounding on both ends of the floor for team success. Going into the game, Ferrarra had noted that “it has certainly been a rough match-up for us physically”, and that “they play two bigs at all times and they pound it inside and they drive it on you. We have to contain the penetration.” After a physical first half in which neither team pulled away, the Lobos channeled their energy and dominated the final two frames, outscoring UNLV 44-27.