Lobos guard Saquan Singleton optimistic about basketball return

Local Sports

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Saquan Singleton said he feels great during basketball media day Thursday. The Lobos senior guard found out earlier this week that he had a heart abnormality that will keep him out of action for an indefinite amount of time.

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“Everybody saying are we going to see you this year? Yeah, you’re going to see me this year,” said Singleton. “I will be on the floor. We’re still working through this, still trying to figure out what this really is. Just trying to figure it out and just trying to keep me healthy, keep me off the court, get a lot of rest.”

Singleton said his family, teammates, coaches, friends and fans have been very supportive. Singleton joked that his teammates call him so much to check on him that he doesn’t answer sometimes. He said he doesn’t want them to baby him because he is a tough guy from the Bronx. Teammates and coaches realize his value on and off the court.

“You never want to lose your teammate, your brother, to something like that, you know. I just hope that he can get back as soon as possible, you know because he’s a big part of our team,” said guard Jaelen House. “He brings size, height to our team. He’s strong and he can finish at the rim.”

Fans will get a first look at the team Saturday when the Lobos hold an open scrimmage at The Pit It will be the first playing in front of fans in The Pit for most of the team. Although he was a member of the team, starting and playing in all 22 games, Singleton never played a home game due to COVID-19 and the restrictions in New Mexico all of last season.

With those restrictions now lifted, all he can do is watch as his teammates battle on the court this weekend. “It’s a lot of frustration, you know, I can’t be out there,” said Singleton. “The fans are going to be there Saturday. I’m really not out there practicing with my guys, my teammates, but they helping [sic] me, coach is helping me get it behind me. They’re pushing me making sure I’m good.”

Despite being limited, Singleton is determined to keep his voice with the team. “I still got to be the leader, you know. I got to be the best coach on the bench right now, you know, try to be better coach than Pitino,” said Singleton.

The Lobos scrimmage will be there first in as many weeks. Lobos head coach Richard Pitino would live to have more scrimmages before the start of the regular season because he believes it could really be a benefit for his team. Last week, the Lobos scrimmaged against Northern Arizona.

“The Northern Arizona experience was great,” said Pitino. “This group needs it. We don’t have a lot of players on this team that have played in The Pit, regardless of fans or not. So, anytime we can get down here it’s great. And, obviously, Saturday will be real beneficial for a fan’s perspective.”

The ‘Weekend of Basketball’ starts at 2 p.m. on Saturday.

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