ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The 2-1 University of New Mexico Men’s Basketball team is gearing up to play at this years Ball Dawgs Classic in Las Vegas, Nevada. Lobo star guard, Jaelen House is still not 100 percent according to Head Coach Richard Pitino, and his status for this tournament is still unsure.
“It will be kind of a day by day thing. You know, he will start some physical activity today and we will just see how he progresses. So, we are not really ready to make a decision on if he is going to play in any of these games or not, but we are trying to progress him towards that, so we will see”, said UNM Head Basketball Coach Richard Pitino.
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KRQE Sports will keep you updated on Jaelen House, but as for now it looks like UNM will lean on some younger players, like Donovan Dent and JT Toppin. A freshman, Toppin has been great so far for the Lobos, even racking up a double-double in their last victory over UT Arlington. Toppin finished with 15 points and 10 rebounds, and he did that with limited minutes, due to cramping in the 2nd half.
“Yeah, I think he is a potential All-freshman, you know Freshman of the year type of player. You know, knock on wood he stays healthy. Now the last 2 games, at saint Mary’s foul trouble limited his minutes, and then UT Arlington he played certainly more, but cramping up limited his minutes. So, we have talked to him about whether its your diet, whether its sleep, whatever those things off of the court, that young people just need to learn, because he’s too valuable”, said Pitino.
UNM will play 3-games at this years Ball Dawgs Classic (Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday). UNM opens tournament play on Tuesday against Toledo at 9:15pm.