ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – It was a big bounce-back win for University of New Mexico Men’s Basketball on Saturday afternoon. Beating Colorado State at their place 84-71, but supposedly trash talk before, during, and after the game led to multiple altercations.
With just over two minutes to play in the UNM vs CSU game on Saturday, Joe Furstinger would set a blind screen in which Colorado State Guard JD Paige would run into and get knocked to the ground. The screen was totally legal, but it did injure Paige, and immediately after he fell to the floor Furstinger would flex his chest and proceed to bump into another Colorado State Player. This started an uproar on the court, as players on both sides joined in a scuffle.
At this time, UNM Assistant Coaches Terrence Rencher and Chris Harriman would jump up to pull their players away from the altercation. This would lead to both coaches getting ejected from the game, due to the rule of assistants not being allowed to leave the bench.
Tensions were high inside the Moby Arena as the hometown fans and Colorado State players were on edge. After the game is where all the controversy starts. Both sides are blaming the other for an altercation between UNM Assistant Terrence Rencher and CSU Forward Emmanuel Omogbo.
Multiple media outlets have released their versions of the story, with no certainty of what actually transpired. Albuquerque Journal writer Geoff Grammer was present during the post-game altercation and took a video of the heated argument between the two.
Omogbo would say, ‘If he wasn’t holding me back, I’d whip your a**.” Then coach Rencher would reply, “You ain’t whipping nothing buddy.”
CSU Coach Larry Eustachy has told the media that Rencher instigated the fight, while UNM Coach Craig Neal and his staff are saying he did not. The Mountain West is currently looking into this matter, and as for UNM they released this statement on Sunday afternoon.
“As an institution, we have been asked not to comment regarding the incidents that happened during and following our game at Colorado State while the Mountain West conducts a review. While we welcome this review by the Mountain West Office several early reports on the matter are blatantly false and we believe the situation should be corrected immediately.
First, while both Coach Terrence Rencher and Coach Chris Harriman were ejected from the game for leaving the bench, they did so during a stoppage in play. It is clearly seen on video that they were diffusing a potentially volatile situation and making sure the UNM players on the court did not get involved. Secondly, it has been reported by multiple outlets that Coach Rencher laughed when he was asked if he understood the personal tragedy faced by Emmanuel Omogbo in the past year. That is categorically false, and video and eye witness accounts have confirmed the inaccuracy. We believe that the false accusation of such a heartless act needed to be addressed immediately.
While we are concerned and frustrated by the events of yesterday, the false accusations called for our immediate comment as we await the report from the Conference.”
Stick with KRQE Sports for the latest on this situation. The Lobos will play Colorado State again at the Pit on February 21, but before that they will play Boise State next. That game will be on Tuesday in Boise and will tip off at 9 p.m. on ESPN U.