First the Team Was Shut Down. Now Their Coach Is Out

Greg Heiar fired from men's basketball team at New Mexico State amid hazing claims
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 11, 2023 3:55 PM CST
Updated Feb 15, 2023 8:22 AM CST
School Suspends Basketball Program During Investigation
New Mexico State's Ivan Aurrecoechea shoots against New Mexico during an NCAA college basketball game Nov. 21, 2019, in Las Cruces.   (Nathan J. Fish/The Las Cruces Sun News via AP, File)
UPDATE Feb 15, 2023 8:22 AM CST

Greg Heiar is out. Just days after New Mexico State indefinitely shuttered its men's basketball program amid allegations of hazing, the team's new head coach has been fired, reports ESPN. News of the termination came via a letter to the college community from Chancellor Dan Arvizu, who noted that athletic director Mario Moccia gave Heiar, 47, the pink slip on Tuesday afternoon. "As I've stated previously, hazing has no place on our campus, and those found responsible will be held accountable for their actions," Arvizu wrote. A campus police report cites three Aggies players for false imprisonment, harassment, and counts of criminal sexual contact against a teammate, with the victim noting the incidents had taken place since last summer. Arvizu added more decisions may be made on other members of the coaching staff after "an expansive review and full investigation."

Feb 11, 2023 3:55 PM CST

New Mexico State has canceled its game scheduled for Saturday and shut down its men's basketball program indefinitely while it investigates "potential violations of school policy." The team's coaching staff will be on paid administrative leave until the allegations are resolved, ABC News reports, though the school didn't say what policy is at issue. New Mexico State did say that the investigation doesn't have anything to do with the fatal shooting of a student in November by a player, Mike Peake; police said the killing was self-defense, per ESPN.

Jeff Goodman of Stadium posted that the shutdown was prompted by a police report about repeated hazing of a teammate by players, per CBS Sports. The school plays in the Division I Western Athletic Conference, which said it's monitoring the matter but had no other comment. New Mexico State also canceled two games after the shooting last fall. (More New Mexico State Aggies stories.)

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