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Paul Weir releases statement on stepping down as Lobos coach

Paul Weir waves to the student section after the Lobos’ victory against Colorado State on Jan. 27, 2018. (Roberto E. Rosales/Albuquerque Journal)

Paul Weir, who agreed Friday to step down as the UNM Lobo men’s basketball coach, effective after next week’s Mountain West Tournament, released a statement Tuesday about the move and his future.

Though he had a quote in a university news release on Friday, this is the first public comment since then, including thanking UNM for the terms of the buyout agreement, thanking fans, coaches and players through the years.

His statement can be read in its entirety below and links to recent coverage of Weir’s departure are at the bottom of the article.

“I have lived out a boyhood dream for the past 17 years and accomplished more than I ever remotely imagined to be possible. I want to first thank all of my former players. You guys provided a life for me that so few are lucky enough to experience. To my coaches and staff who work tirelessly along the way thank you for your dedication. My friends, supporters, fans, professors, and countless others who have been by my side I will always remain indebted. The head coaches and athletic directors that opened doors for me, know I have as sincere an appreciation for your belief in me as any one person can have. Last and most important, to my family both here and afar — I’m finally coming home!

“Many have already asked what is next. I am eager to explore the many interests that have piqued me at different points along the way of my coaching career. In that light, I am incredibly thankful to President Stokes, Eddie Nuñez, and all the personnel at UNM that have enabled me to freely seek new employment without mitigation. It speaks to the morality of the current leadership of this wonderful institution that will surely carry it forward to greater heights. Wherever that takes me I can’t promise but know that I will work even harder than I did to arrive here and completely immerse myself into this exciting next step.

“I will be available to assist the next coach in whatever way (or not) they wish to ensure a smooth succession. There are some tremendously valuable components here for the right person to come in and reach that elusive Sweet 16 sometime soon. For now, I humbly declined further commenting on this so that we can focus can be on our amazing players and staff who have carried themselves impeccably throughout this unique season. This was a remarkable course and I couldn’t have asked for a better group to spend it with. My gratitude for living the life that I have for the past 17 years is boundless and I take that appreciation forward forever. My family was honored to call UNM and Albuquerque our home and it will evermore be a special place for us. I want to wish all of you and around Lobo Basketball the best always.

“God Bless You All,

“Dr. Paul Weir.”

The Lobos play at Colorado State on Wednesday and are expected to be the 11 seed in next week’s Mountain West Tournament, which begins March 10 in Las Vegas, Nev.

Here are some links to recent Journal coverage of the resignation and look ahead at UNM’s search for a new coach:

• Weir, UNM agree to part ways at end of season (Link)

• What is UNM’s AD looking for in next Lobo hoops coach? (Link)

• UNM: Paul Weir’s $490,000 buyout will be privately funded (Link)

• Notebook: Weir departure agreement says sides must play nice (Link)

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