ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Three players have left the Lobo women’s basketball team this current season. Some of the former Lobos from previous teams believe it’s because of the way they have been treated.
Multiple former players have made allegations of verbal abuse under current coach Mike Bradbury. Jayda Bovero, a guard who left during her junior season in 2017, was the only one willing to speak publicly about her experience as a player.
“It really just comes down to the fact that you do not get treated like a human being in that gym,” said Bovero. “The emotional and mental abuse that goes on is something that is really hard to deal with, and it should never be dealt with and people are just getting really sick of it.”
Bovero said her experience at UNM led her to seek a therapist. Jasmine Smith was a freshman guard out of Houston, Texas in 2017. Smith’s mother Lashaundra said her daughter, who has played the game since the age of 4, started hating basketball after her first season at UNM.
Lashaundra backs Bovero, alleging that her daughter was also subject to verbal abuse. Bovero has been asked why she is speaking out now. She said it is because she knows nothing has changed and that it is a conversation that needs to be had.
“I have girls that are on that team that are consistently reaching out to me asking what to do,” said Bovero. “So, it’s like these people are really wanting help and nobody seems to be wanting to give it to them.”
Lobo Athletic Director Eddie Nunez said that he has addressed every issue that has been brought to his attention. Nunez said he will continue to do so in the future because the well-being of student-athletes is of first and foremost importance at UNM.