NMSU Round Up

Column: Admit it or not, community support for NMSU athletics is a glaring issue

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






NMSU+men%27s+basketball+is+averaging+just+5%2C166+fans+per+game+through+their+first+five+home+games+this+season.+
Back to Article
Back to Article

Column: Admit it or not, community support for NMSU athletics is a glaring issue

NMSU men's basketball is averaging just 5,166 fans per game through their first five home games this season.

NMSU men's basketball is averaging just 5,166 fans per game through their first five home games this season.

Zack Jimenez

NMSU men's basketball is averaging just 5,166 fans per game through their first five home games this season.

Zack Jimenez

Zack Jimenez

NMSU men's basketball is averaging just 5,166 fans per game through their first five home games this season.

The intent of this column is not to ruffle any feathers.

I know nothing I write is going to change what has been the trend in Las Cruces for nearly a decade. I am not going to attack the city of Las Cruces, or NMSU students for that matter, for not going to the games (though students have done a good job coming out thus far).

This column is not about that. With the growing assumption that I am anti-NMSU to my core, I am going to spew out and report a couple of facts and the readers can take it for what it is worth.

Since 2011-12, the New Mexico State men’s basketball team is 106-11 inside the Pan American Center. With a.905 winning percentage, it ranks among the best in college basketball and is head and toes above any team in the Western Athletic Conference or every rival the program has.

I do understand that five of those years came under Marvin Menzies. I am familiar with his tenure and acknowledge that his teams were not the most fun to watch and he could not beat UNM or any quality mid-major opponent. You knew every year his team would hover around 22-24 wins and 10-12 losses and make a run in Vegas.

The knocks on him were completely valid and it makes sense why people would grow a bit old of knowing what was going to happen before it ever did.

When Menzies left for UNLV, it came as a bit of a relief for Aggie fans. It was time for a fresh start after the program had definitely hit a plateau.

For the sake of keeping this objective, let’s just not bring up the 2016-17 season since it hurts some folks’ feelings and would somehow shine a light on my perceived infatuation with the UNM Lobos.  

What were the things going against Menzies again? Boring teams, not homegrown talent, can’t win rivalry games or Power-5 road games?

Well Chris Jans had two players last year that were 1-2 in the conference player of the year discussion. Jemerrio Jones was a player most people will never see the likes of again. At 6-foot-5, he was one of the greatest rebounders in program history and had a personality that could light up a room.

Zach Lofton made a one-year pit stop in Las Cruces and left his mark all over the program. Lofton was a prolific scorer and would end of posting of the sixth-highest single-season single number in Aggie history. Hometown talent Johnny McCants is a Sportscenter Top-10 regular and his high energy and athleticism make him a fun player to watch.

In just a little bit over a year under Jans, the Aggies have beaten No. 6 Miami, Davidson, Illinois, and Washington State.

The program used to struggle beating New Mexico and UTEP. Menzies only had one home win over the Lobos in his tenure and went 3-15 overall against the Lobos. It was always deflating watching Steve Alford’s bunch come into the Pan American Center and leave with a win. But the tide has turned. The team is 7-0 against their two rivals and are primed to make that record 8-0 after Tuesday night during a time where beating UNM has never been sweeter for Aggie fans.

NMSU is again in early favorite to win the conference tournament for the ninth time in their 13 seasons in the WAC.

Everything that has been a reason to not go to men’s basketball games no longer exists. Mario Moccia created a family-friendly ticket plan and is as accessible as any athletic director in the country. He is trying his best, as is his staff and this team – but they can only do so much. They go out in the community, hold events, talk on radio stations and hang posters at restaurants. What more could be asked of them?

If you already go to the games, good on you. If you could start bringing an extra friend or two, that would be terrific. Students, you get in for free and you’re almost guaranteed to leave with a free food coupon after every game so why not just check out a game and hang out?

Nobody is asking for sell outs every night, but can’t this community get 6,000 for the important non-rivalry home games? I know Las Cruces can.

If this trend continues, all this winning is going to be hard to maintain. But maybe reality needs to set in for some – after all, you don’t know what you have until it is gone.

Facebook Comments
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






About the Writer
Derek Gonzales, Editor-in-Chief

Derek E. Gonzales enters his third year as an employee of the New Mexico State University Round Up and first as the Editor-in-Chief. The homegrown product...

5 Comments

5 Responses to “Column: Admit it or not, community support for NMSU athletics is a glaring issue”

  1. Bob gallagher on December 3rd, 2018 5:13 pm

    I think your article was spot on. I have thought for the past 10 years that the community as a whole does not deserve this athletic program. With the exception of football, which has recently increased it’s level of performance, each and every teen represents the University and the community and the state in an exemplary been on the court at the fields, in the classroom and off. And they do it at a high winning percentage. Last week I was one of 5800 people who watched the women’s basketball team at the University of New Mexico, comparing their attendance to the attendance of our outstanding men’s basketball team is again spot on end something that is not politically correct shot most people don’t have the confidence to say it. St. Mary’s and Washington state or two programs that year in and year out compete at the national level, both came to our arena, both lost and both most likely played in front of the smallest crowd they will all seasons. If we cannot put 8000 to 10,000 people in Pan Am for those kind of games you can forget about complain that we never play power five schools because they will stop making trips to Las Cruces. You can badmouth Marvin Menzies all you want but UNLV viewed him as a coach worthy of heading up their program as did Texas Tech. Our last four head basketball coaches should be complemented for the b way they and their teams have always represented our university

  2. Anonymous on December 3rd, 2018 6:03 pm

    This guy is not only fake but a liar too. “I don’t see where in this article that I inserted my own issues with other fans?”

    Really???

    “For the sake of keeping this objective, let’s just not bring up the 2016-17 season since it hurts some folks’ feelings and would somehow shine a light on my perceived infatuation with the UNM Lobos. ”

    How about giving kudos to the loud rowdy 4800 thousand fans that were there? Constantly bitching about attendance isn't going to get people to show up. Your infactuation with UNM is getting tiresome. Refer to @nmfishbowlcom please. https://t.co/saeDjwE89c— DancingNMSUAggie (@AggieFanatico) December 2, 2018

  3. Alan on December 4th, 2018 10:28 am

    The issue for me is that when tickets were cheaper, I could take my family out for a game and have a great time. Now, cheap seats are $15 a pop. I just can’t afford to do that more than a few times a year. The basketball team priced me out of going to games. That’s why this Las Cruces citizen, and NMSU alumni doesn’t go to many games.

  4. Richard Rael on December 4th, 2018 2:29 pm

    I remember the Neil McCarthy years. And the ol noise meter with the light up aggie and the smoking gun. Those were the days. I wish they brought that metwr back

  5. Scott on December 4th, 2018 11:19 pm

    I’m an NNSU Graduate, lived in Cruces for the last 32 years on my second stint. Been a founder of the now defunct Football Goal Line Club. Was a part of thr amazing Macarthy BB years including being at the phenomenal win over UNLV at the Pan Am in ’90 where we split the Big West championship and UNLV won the National Championship that year. Took part in a hired consulting group focus meeting not once but twice under AD Boston. Gave detailed examples of NMSU arrogance and perception of local community and went nowhere. Goal Line club is dead due to Zero support from Mocha and Martin. Carruthers was the only one from the Admin that made it a point to stop by and say hi. This community does not forget these things. Example being high school football attendance vs NMSU football attendance. I have been a season ticket holder for the last 13 years for BB only because my love of the game. I’m at the point now that I evaluate the rising cost every year vs their success, nothing against Chris Jans as I just witnessed the crushing of UNM 100-65 tonight. One of the sweetest wins in recent memory and something Menzis could never comprehend. The University and the AD department are out of touch with the community and have been for the longest time and until this changes the status quo will remain.

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




Navigate Left
  • Column: Admit it or not, community support for NMSU athletics is a glaring issue

    Opinion

    Opinion: GCU need a win to have any chance at rivalry with NM State

  • Column: Admit it or not, community support for NMSU athletics is a glaring issue

    Opinion

    Opinion: In this political world, objectivity is what we need

  • Column: Admit it or not, community support for NMSU athletics is a glaring issue

    Campus Life

    Editorial: The Round Up’s role at New Mexico State University

  • Column: Admit it or not, community support for NMSU athletics is a glaring issue

    Opinion

    Commentary: The introducing of UNM athletics’ “bail-out bill” sets cringe-worthy precedent

  • Column: Admit it or not, community support for NMSU athletics is a glaring issue

    Opinion

    Column: Thanks for the memories, Aggie Memorial

  • Column: Admit it or not, community support for NMSU athletics is a glaring issue

    Opinion

    Commentary: Do not write off NM State football just yet

  • Column: Admit it or not, community support for NMSU athletics is a glaring issue

    News

    Column: Saturday’s game is another opportunity to show how NMSU athletics does more with less

  • Column: Admit it or not, community support for NMSU athletics is a glaring issue

    Campus Life

    Theta Chi fraternity makes way back to NMSU campus

  • Column: Admit it or not, community support for NMSU athletics is a glaring issue

    Campus Life

    Former NMSU administration addresses alleged misstatements at Board of Regents Meeting

  • Column: Admit it or not, community support for NMSU athletics is a glaring issue

    Opinion

    COMMENTARY: Aggie football fans need to carry the momentum into 2018

Navigate Right

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






The Independent Student Voice of NMSU Since 1907
Column: Admit it or not, community support for NMSU athletics is a glaring issue