Former Lobo men’s basketball center Gethro Muscadin remains in a coma in a Kansas hospital after a single vehicle crash last Thursday near Topeka, a source close to Muscadin from out of state told the Journal.
The 6-foot-10 Muscadin, who left the Lobos program on Dec. 20, was back in Kansas, where he played for the Kansas Jayhawks as a freshman a season ago before transferring to UNM this past summer.
“The last week has been extremely difficult emotionally for our program,” Lobos coach Richard Pitino told the Journal on Tuesday. “Gethro is fighting for his life and needs a miracle. We continue to ask everyone to keep Gethro in their prayers.”
Muscadin, who roomed with Lobo teammates at Lobo Village and was known as the best cook on the team, didn’t work out at UNM. But he was a popular, lighthearted teammate often cracking jokes with local media whenever he could in his short time in Albuquerque. Once he told the Journal he used to sneak protein powder into the oatmeal he would cook for teammate Birima Seck – 6-foot-11, 187 pounds when he arrived at UNM – so Seck would add weight.
Among the publicly posted well wishes and prayers shared on social media included those from several teammates – at UNM, Kansas and from his prep school and club basketball days before college – coaches who recruited him and families of teammates.
Pitino, who recruited Muscadin to play at Minnesota two years ago before the native of Haiti ultimately decided to become a Jayhawk, has said that despite Muscadin leaving the program – Pitino said the two mutually agreed after the Dec. 20 game against SMU that UNM was “not the right fit” – he was still very fond of Muscadin and planned to do whatever the coaching staff could to help him find a school to transfer to.
Muscadin, 21, and a friend had attended the Dec. 29 game in Lawrence, Kansas, between Nevada and Kansas.
According to a Kansas Highway Patrol crash log, Muscadin was the passenger in a car driven by a 21-year-old female friend when the car “went off the road, rolled multiple times and came to a rest in the fence line.” The crash was reported at 3:10 a.m. last Thursday on Interstate 335 about 14 miles south of Topeka. The driver was wearing a seat belt and suffered minor injuries. The report indicated Muscadin was not wearing a seat belt.
Both Pitino and former Kansas coach Bill Self posted to social media asking for prayers for Muscadin last Thursday after learning of the crash. Self became emotional talking to reporters in a regularly scheduled press conference on Friday.
“It’s bad. It’s bad. I don’t think I’m the one that should share the details of how the accident occurred,” Self said. “… But it’s not good, guys. Fortunately the driver is, I believe, is going to be OK. Maybe not be easy, but be OK. But Gethro, he’s definitely fighting for his life. And it will be a very, very, very long recovery if he’s able to get through this. So, I’m praying for a miracle.”