The Regents meeting on March 6th was most notable for the number of people who signed up for public comment and expressed their concerns about the proposal to transfer $1.1 million from the instruction and general budget to the Athletic Department. After listening patiently for 45 minutes, the Regents voted not to transfer the money, but instead to authorize an extension of the repayment period for the Athletic Department debt. The extension will free up some badly needed funds for Athletics. Another notable outcome of the meeting was the decision to pursue the opening of an NMSU branch campus in San Luis Potosi City, Mexico.
On Thursday, March 8, I took annual leave to travel to Las Vegas with my wife, Jenifer, and cheer on the NMSU Men and Women’s Basketball teams as they played in the WAC Tournament. Unfortunately, the Women’s team, which has had a marvelous season, suffered a disappointing loss to Seattle University in the semifinal game. The men also struggled a bit in their semifinal game, but managed to find a way to win, something that has characterized them throughout this season. They were sharper in the final game, winning handily against Grand Canyon University. As fun as the games are, the real pleasure of the trip is seeing so many Aggies come together to root for their teams.