ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. --- University of New Mexico center Alex Kirk, a native of Los Alamos, N.M., will forgo his senior season and declare for the NBA Draft. The decision was announced via @UNMHoops after a meeting with head coach Craig Neal early afternoon.
Kirk, who redshirted the 2011-12, will earn his bachelor’s in marketing from UNM this May. He averaged 13.3 points per game, 8.7 rebounds per game, and 2.7 blocked shots per game last season as UNM went 27-7, advancing to the NCAA Tournament for a third straight season. Kirk was named Third Team All-Mountain West and was a two-time All-MW Defensive Team selection. He was also named NABC Second Team All-District.
“We are fully supportive of Alex and his decision, and will do everything we can to help him,” said head coach Craig Neal. “I recruited Alex since he was a sophomore in high school, and I have been able to work with him and watch his development.”
Neal added, “I think it says a lot about our program and how we develop players that we can have guys declare and be draft-ready as juniors, like Tony Snell and Darington Hobson. Alex has done a great job academically having completed his degree and he is moving on to the next phase in his career.”
Kirk leaves as the No. 8 rebounder in school history with 685 and the No. 4 shot blocker in school history with 168. He also broke the 1,000-point barrier in the Mountain West championship game, and is one of 32 players to have ever scored 1,000 points in a Lobo career. He spent last summer playing for the United States in the World University Games. Kirk will receive a bachelor’s in marketing in May from UNM.
Kirk will release a statement through his agent sometime tomorrow.