ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – In Loboland the search is on for Craig Neal’s replacement. Neal was fired late Friday night just before midnight. Lobo fans have already used social media to talk about possible coaching candidates.
Former Indiana coach Tom Crean was mentioned right away. There was even someone hoping Steve Forbes would want to leave Tennessee State for the Land of Enchantment. Another suggested giving former Lobo and NBA veteran Danny Granger a shot at coaching for the first time. KRQE Sports has a list of four possible candidates with New Mexico ties:
The current San Antonio Spurs assistant has deep roots and plenty of family in New Mexico. He’s an Albuquerque Academy graduate who would probably want to stick around for awhile. His NBA background might be useful for bringing in talent. He got a taste of what it’s like to be a head coach in 2015. Borrego was the interim head coach of the Orlando Magic for part of the 2015 season. The NBA and college are different, but he still got a chance to lead.
Chris Walker was an assistant at New Mexico from 2007-09. He was known for being a good recruiter while at New Mexico. The former Villanova point guard still has deep recruiting ties in Texas. He was associate head coach at Texas Tech during the 2011-12 season. During the 2012-12 season Walker was bumped up to interim head coach. His record in that role was 11-20. Walker is currently a game analyst for CBS Sports Network and the American Network.
Dooley was an assistant at New Mexico under Fran Fraschilla from 1999-2002. He was also an assistant at Wyoming from 2002-03. That makes him very familiar with the Mountain West. Dooley is currently the head coach at Florida Gulf Coast where he has been since 2013. He won the Atlantic Sun regular season championship in 2014. He won the regular season and tournament championship this past season and was also named the Atlantic Sun Coach of the Year.
Brown is a former Lobo forward who has been an assistant at a variety of places, including Fresno State of the Mountain West. Brown also coached at New Mexico Junior College for a year. Brown was instrumental in helping to establish the Corpus-Christi A&M men’s basketball program. He has deep recruiting ties in basketball rich California. He is currently an assistant at The University of the Incarnate Word.
Once again, these are just possibilities with New Mexico ties…guys who might want to stay awhile.