Half the lights in the main practice facility don't turn on. Student-athletes strength train in a tent — weather permitting. Track athletes lack locker rooms altogether. These are just a few of the "unacceptable" issues that University of New Mexico athletic director Eddie Nunez hopes to address through a $3 million funding request to the state.
According to KRQE in Albuquerque, lawmakers have long been in favor of funneling money to UNM athletics programs, but were hamstrung by former governor Susana Martinez more often than not. A recent outlay of $1.1 million was intended to put the athletic department on more solid ground, though that amount did not require UNM to reinstate sports it has cut for budgetary reasons.
The latest request will address some of the most urgent needs fully, while other projects will have to settle for phased improvement, according to Nunez, who added, "We hope this is a continual process."
"One of the areas we wanted to address first and foremost was our Title IX areas," Nunez told KRQUE. "We want to make sure we are focusing on areas that are in need for us, for our student-athletes."
Current governor Michelle Lujan Grisham still needs to approve the latest capital request.