Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

Lobos Go Through Up-and-Down Time.(Sports)

Byline: Mark Smith Journal Staff Writer


It wasn't exactly a ride on Magic Mountain. But for the second straight season, the University of New Mexico men's basketball team rode a roller coaster, nonetheless.

It definitely wasn't a thrill-a-minute excursion. It was more of a cruise on a kiddie coaster no real breathtaking highs and only minimal dropoffs along the way.

The 2000-01 season began 10-1 and ended with four postseason wins. But the quick start came against nobodys and the stretch run against also-rans.

In between was a topsy-turvy expedition, highlighted by an impressive win at Gonzaga and clouded by a loss at Air Force to cap a six-losses-in-seven-games skid.

The result was a 21-13 record and a third-round appearance in the National Invitation Tournament.

To the dismay of Lobos fans and their coaches, the team was picked to finish fifth in the Mountain West Conference, and it did just that barely. It likely will be tabbed a slot or two higher next season.

Big men wanted

Much of UNM's future success will hinge upon its recruiting the next few weeks. …

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