NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – When he found out that he would be named coach of the U19 Canada team headed to the FIBA Basketball World Cup in Latvia, Paul Weir was excited. It’s his second time around. The former University of New Mexico basketball coach was a part of the coaching staff for the 2017 gold medal team who won it all in Egypt.
“It’s amazing how it kind of bookended my Lobo career,” said Weir. “I did this before I started being a Lobo coach and now I’m doing it after being a Lobo coach.” While Weir is excited about leading a team at the basketball cup, he is not very thrilled with the challenges COVID-19 might present.
In his last season at New Mexico, Weir and his Lobos struggled to a 6-16 season played entirely on the road, due to COVID-19 restrictions in the state. The illness is still a problem in other countries. “When the United States and New Mexico was battling COVID. That’s still going on in other parts of the world,” said Weir. “So, there is an element of that I’m kind of stepping back into that I’m not overly excited about.”
The FIBA Basketball World Cup runs from July 3 through July 11.
In other sports news, The Albuquerque Isotopes failed to salvage a split with the Las Vegas Aviators Tuesday. Despite hitting three home runs, the Isotopes fell to the Aviators 5-4. Isotopes skipper Warren Schaeffer said despite the loss his team is has improved play.
“I feel like we’re playing well man. I feel like we’re right on the cusp of putting it all together, pitching and hitting,” said Schaeffer. The 9-21 Isotopes will return to the road for 12 games. The first leg of the trip starts at Salt Lake City Thursday.