LAS CRUCES, N.M. (KTSM) – The New Mexico State men’s basketball team suspended operations indefinitely on Friday evening, according to the university.
In a statement, a university official said the program would be suspending operations, “until further notice.”
Sources confirmed to KTSM on Friday night that the reason for the shutdown was due to allegations of hazing by at least three different players on more than one occasion. KTSM has learned a police report was filed within the last 24 hours regarding the alleged hazing incidents.
The news of the alleged hazing was first reported by Jeff Goodman of Stadium.
According to the university, NMSU personnel were recently made aware of the new allegations, which are completely separate from the ongoing investigation into a deadly shooting involving NMSU basketball player Mike Peake and three University of New Mexico students on Nov. 19, 2022.
The school would not confirm the hazing allegations, although they said that the new allegations involve potential violations of university policy. While the allegations are being investigated, the entire coaching staff, including first year head coach Greg Heiar, have been placed on paid administrative leave.
No players or members of the NMSU administration were suspended as of Friday night when the program was shut down.
KTSM has learned that the new allegations against the basketball program did not stem from something else uncovered by the ongoing internal and independent investigation being conducted by NMSU and the Rodey Law Firm.
The Aggies’ scheduled game on Feb. 11 at Cal Baptist in Riverside, Calif., was cancelled and a university official told KTSM it was unclear when, or if, the team would return to action this season. As of Friday night, the team was still in California.
The New Mexico State Board of Regents issued a statement in support of the move in a statement released to KTSM.
“The New Mexico State University Board of Regents were informed this evening of the suspension of operations for the men’s basketball program. The board supports the action taken by the university leaders and is confident a full and thorough investigation will be conducted.”
The NMSU student code of conduct prohibits hazing. This is what NMSU’s handbook says in regards to hazing:
An act or omission (not based on discriminatory motives prohibited by RPM and ARP 3.25) committed by one or more individuals, occurring on or off campus, where:
- The act or omission is committed in connection with an initiation into, an affiliation with, or the maintenance of membership in, any organization. For the purpose of this policy, “organization” means an intercollegiate or intramural athletic team; chartered student organization; or other association, order, society, corps, cooperative, club, department, unit, division or similar group that is officially or unofficially affiliated with the university and whose membership consists primarily of enrolled students or employees of the university; and
- The act or omission creates an unreasonable risk of emotional or physical harm, or causes actual physical harm, mental duress or degradation, or unreasonably interferes with a person’s academic endeavors or progress, or work environment.
The Aggies are 9-15, 2-10 in WAC play in Heiar’s tumultuous first season at NMSU.
This story will be updated as more information becomes available.