NMSU Basketball HC Greg Heiar Fired amid Hazing Allegations

Erin Walsh February 15, 2023

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New Mexico State men's basketball head coach Greg Heiar has been fired following allegations of student-athlete hazing, NMSU Chancellor Dan Arvizu said Tuesday, per Jason Groves of Las Cruces Sun-News .

Arvizu said Saturday that players on the basketball team were interviewed by school officials regarding the alleged hazing, which led to the entire program being shut down.

"Hazing is a despicable act," Arvizu wrote in a letter to the NMSU community. "It humiliates and degrades someone and has the potential to cause physical and emotional harm, or even death. Sadly, hazing can become part of an organization's culture, if left unchecked."

Arvizu added that the university would hold a meeting on Tuesday to "discuss limited personnel matters concerning individual employees." It didn't mention which employees were being discussed.

Colin Deaver of KTSM 9 News reported Feb. 10 that New Mexico State had abruptly suspended the men's basketball team and placed the coaching staff on paid administrative leave following possible violations of school policy.

The only details provided at the time were that it was unrelated to the investigation into a fatal shooting involving Aggies basketball player Mike Peake and four University of New Mexico students.

More details of the alleged hazing were uncovered on Feb. 12, per a New Mexico State University Police Department report obtained by Meredith Deliso and Bill Hutchinson of ABC News.

The report stated that a player on the men's basketball team reported the alleged hazing to police on Friday. The player said they had been hazed by three teammates in the locker room for several months and that it often occurred in front of the whole team.

On Sunday, Arvizu announced the remainder of the team's season had been canceled by the university.

Two players, Shahar Lazar and Kent Olewiler, announced they would be leaving the program and intended to enter the transfer portal. Darius Carr, a four-star prospect, has also announced he will be asking for his release from his national letter of intent amid the turmoil.