WHAT’S YOUR PRESEASON POLL? The Mountain West preseason men’s basketball poll will be released today (Oct. 17). Feel free to let us know what you think of where the Lobos are picked to finish. Send thoughts to EnchantmentSportsNM@gmail.com.
By Mark Smith
Editor in Chief
There’s never been any question. Practice makes, well, a lot of sense.
Perfect? I’m not sure that’s been achieved in the history of ever.
I do know, however, that practice is the biggest key to improvement. But while a single key can open many doors – it obviously has no chance to unlock them all.
The same can be said for practice. And when you do it.
“We’re mixing up our practice times a little bit,” University of New Mexico coach Paul Weir told Enchantment Sports. “We’re going to do some 9 p.m. Practices (which the Lobos did on Friday), some 7 p.m. Practices, some early-morning practices, just to try and get us ready for games starting at different times.
“We have a lot of 9 p.m. games this year. We’re just going to do some things to kind of keep our guys, not only stimulated and on their toes a little bit, but also getting their bodies ready to play at different times of the day.”
I can’t imagine Weir consulted Allen Iverson.
But staggering practice times makes a boatload of sense.
The Mountain West isn’t a Power 5 league, so being televised is a prime perk. As a result, the Lobos – who will likely be ranked as one of the league’s top three teams when the preseason poll is released today – have tip-offs as early as 2 p.m. and as late as 9 p.m.
You want TV coverage in the MW? You got it – but not when you might want it.
“We (varied practice times) a little bit last year, but not to this extent,” Weir said. “We didn’t have any 9 p.m. games last year. I think we got picked for four of five 9 p.m. games this year, so we’ve got to get used to performing at 9 p.m.”
Any chance of changing some of those late home tip-offs to help the fans get home earlier?
“I don’t think so.” Weir said. “We talked a little bit about it when (the MW schedule came out), but TV is TV. So we’re just at their mercy a little bit.”
OFF THE BOARD: Santa Ana Star Hotel and Casino’s sports book is slated to open today (see my previous story here), as it is now legal to bet sports in New Mexico. But casino officials said there will be no wagering allowed in sports involving UNM and New Mexico State.
“Obviously … that is helpful from my perspective,”Weir said, “and potentially having to monitor illegal activity.”
You can bet – so to speak – that I will be writing much more about those of us who are, hmm, sports wagering enthusiasts, in future Spread the News columns on Enchantment Sports.com.
CHERRY/SILVER AND FREE FOOTBALL: While Lobo fans will have to deal with those late-night games during the season, they can get an early look at the team on Friday (Oct. 19).
For the second-straight year, UNM will debut its roster in public with the Cherry & Silver game in Dreamstyle Arena – The Pit at 6 p.m. There will be a scrimmage, as well as 3-point shooting and dunk contests.
The proceeds benefit the Send-A-Kid campaign that looks to aid children in attending Lobo games. Tickets are $2 and are available at UNMTickets.com, by calling 505-925-LOBO or at the ticket office at The Pit.
All those attending the game also receive a free ticket to UNM’s home football game on Saturday (Oct. 20) at against Fresno State.
Fans wishing to purchase season basketball tickets will be able to do so at the Cherry & Silver game. The Lobo ticket office will be on site at the Northeast corner of Dreamstyle Arena with Select-A-Seat, allowing fans to choose their seats in best-available locations for the 2018-19 season.
Current season-ticket holders can also upgrade their seats to available sections if they wish. Gates open at 4 p.m.