Lobos Coach Tangled In Congressional Campaign

This story was written by Staff report, Daily Lobo

Last week, University of New Mexico men's basketball coach Steve Alford got caught between the athletics department and Sheriff Darren White, who is running for Congress.

White's campaign released invitations to an event hosted by a UNM lobbyist, advertising photos with Alford for a $1,000 donation.

In a statement released last week, Alford said he was unaware of the promised photo shoot.

"I understand that Darren's campaign distributed the invitation and details about the event," Alford said. "Unfortunately, the campaign received approval to send invitations without those details being passed on to me."

Greg Remington, UNM's sports information director, said Alford and White had never been introduced.

"Steve Alford thought that it was only going to be a meet and greet," Remington said. "It was not supposed to be anything but stopping by and saying hello."

Alford said he did not agree to sell photos.

"I explained to Darren that I don't charge money for photographs, since I have always thought that it's wrong for athletes to charge fans for autographs and photos," Alford said in a statement.

Alford takes a strong stance against endorsing any candidate, Remington said.

"I think that Steve would have done the same meet and greet for the Democratic Party as well," he said.

Despite the controversy, Alford said he will still go to Wednesday's event.

"I don't endorse political candidates," Alford said. "However, I am a man of my word and plan to attend the event."