One Lobo hoops scholarship opened up Friday night.
But not for long.
Minutes after news broke that 6-foot-9 junior college transfer Tajuan Agee would not be joining the team after all, Zane Martin, 6-foot-4 point guard transfer from Towson, announced via social media he would be joining the program this season.
Agee, a native of Chicago who played this past season at Tyler (Texas) Junior College and signed in November a National Letter of Intent to play for UNM, will now play at Iona.
He had moved to Albuquerque in June with the intent to join the team for summer classes and workouts, but was never able to enroll and in recent weeks was released from his letter of intent and allowed to seek other playing options.
“Tajuan was working diligently to meet admission requirements for UNM,” Lobos head coach Paul Weir said. “However, with our support, he explored other opportunities where admission may not be as problematic. We are all happy for Tajuan and wish him well at Iona. He is a talented young man with a bright future ahead of him.”
While news broke on Twitter of Agee’s commitment to Iona, Martin posted a video on his various social media accounts, announcing he would be transferring to play for the Lobos. He will have to sit out the coming 2018-19 season per NCAA transfer rules and will have two seasons of playing eligibility remaining following that.
— Zane0 (@ZaneMartin_0) July 7, 2018
UNM can not comment on Martin until scholarship paperwork is approved.
The Lobos remain at the NCAA maximum scholarship limit of 13 with the Agee departure and Martin addition.
Martin played two years at Towson of the Colonial Athletic Association, averaging this past season as a sophomore 19.8 points per game (21.0 in league games). He connected on 38 percent of his 3-point attempts, averaged 2.7 assists, drew an average of 5.8 fouls per 40 minutes played and ranked No. 4 in the CAA according to the college basketball statistical analytics site KenPom.com.
In his commitment video to UNM, Martin, who is from West Philadelphia, says he always felt overlooked when recruited out of high school.
“In this whole process, all I wanted was a program that believed in me as much as I believed in myself,” Martin said in the video. “I needed coaches around me who understood where I’ve come from and will work just as hard to get me to where I want to go.”
The Lobos are now expected to have 12 scholarship players available this season with only Martin sitting out. The team awaits the addition of 6-2 Keith McGee, a junior college point guard finishing summer classes at his South Plains College in Levelland, Texas, where this past season as a freshman he was named the MVP of the NJCAA National Championship Tournament, where his team won a national championship.
Former Kansas Jayhawk Carlton Bragg, a 6-10 forward who has been enrolled at UNM since January, has not officially been placed on scholarship yet, but has been practicing with the team since March and taking part in all offseason workouts.
GOING PRO: Former Lobo Devon Williams, who was diagnosed with spinal stenosis (narrowing of the spinal canal) in November 2015, on Thursday announced he has signed a professional contract to play in Sweden this coming season.