NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – Tod Brown has been named the 12th head coach in the history of University of New Mexico Lobos baseball. Brown comes to UNM from North Dakota State after 14 seasons. “There’s only three things that I thought it would take, to take me away from North Dakota State and that was retire, fired, or expire and as you can tell two of those three are really bad and one is really, really bad,” said Brown.
Brown led the Bison to the 2021 NCAA Tournament, winning its first Division I postseason game 6-1 over Mountain West champion Nevada. He has 341 wins at North Dakota State and is the second-winningest coach in program history. Brown said other coaches describe his teams as hard-nosed, mentally and physically tough. Brown has a Zoom meeting with Lobo players that he is inheriting and said it was unbelievable.
Brown said players that were exploring other options, and those who were on the fence, are now all in. At North Dakota State, Brown recruited local players. He plans to continue doing so, just like Ray Birmingham before him. “We’re going to get the best players we can in the state and our priorities are the bordering states, West Texas and Arizona at the high school and junior college level,” said Brown. “That’s our number one priority. Then there are going to be opportunities to venture out of that through connections, but that’s going to be our number one priority is to get the best kids that we can find that fit into what we’re looking for and the positions we need as close to our campus as possible.”
Former Lobos baseball coach Ray Birmingham retired this past season after 43 years of coaching baseball, 14 as head coach of the Lobos. Birmingham retired as the winningest baseball coach in the state.
In other sports news, the Duke City Gladiators are making the Rio Rancho Events Center home this season, they’re first in the Indoor Football League. The 2-2 Gladiators are home Saturday for a clash against the well-known Arizona Rattlers. It will be the number one offense in the league, the Gladiators, against the number three defense.
“They are the set standard for the league of the IFL,” said Gladiators receiver Dello Davis. “So, playing the set standard is always a test for us, but, you know, let’s just see where we are as a team.” Game time Saturday is 6:05 p.m.
New Mexico United defeated San Antonio FC 2-0 Wednesday night to take over sole possession of second place in the USL Mountain Division. Josh Suggs scored the first goal for New Mexico in the 33rd minute. Austin Yearwood followed in the 52nd minute, getting the first goal of his professional career.
The goal had a very noticeable bend to it that excited the crowd. “It’s a little bit of an out-of-body experience,” said Yearwood. “It’s a cut inside and shot with the right and, you know, it goes in.” New Mexico United is at Colorado Springs Switchbacks next Friday at the start of three games on the road.
High school track and field athletes in the ranks of boys and girls Class A held their state championship meet Thursday. Team totals will be released later Thursday evening.