UTEP Coach Says Player Left Team Because Of ‘How He Was Portrayed on Local TV’

By Merrill Knox 

The University of Texas at El Paso men’s basketball coach has linked the departure of one of his players to reporting by KVIA sports anchor Asher Wildman (pictured).

The player leaving UTEP, Chris Washburn Jr., allegedly assaulted a bouncer at an El Paso bar last month after he was declined entry for being underage. Wildman obtained the police report and reported on the incident on the El Paso ABC affiliate. No arrests have been made in the May incident.

Washburn was the first UTEP freshman to finish the season with three double-figure point totals in more than a decade. In an interview with the El Paso Times this week, UTEP coach Tim Floyd talked about Washburn’s departure:

He has expressed an interest in getting back closer to home in the Dallas area and we couldn’t satisfy his minutes. He wanted a little more playing time. Plus, he was also a little disappointed by how he was portrayed on local TV by Asher Wildman of Channel 7.

Patricia Martinez, an El Paso radio host, penned a column in support of Wildman’s reporting:

Get over it, Coach.  I love the UTEP Men’s Basketball team, but if they act like thugs, then you should be apologizing for their behavior, not attacking the media for reporting on the incident.  You are supposed to be a role model, and all you showed your players is how to avoid responsibility for their actions.

Instead of taking potshots at the media, why didn’t you call Asher, tell him you wanted to talk with him on camera about his treatment of your player, and hash it out like men? The quote in the Times was a classless move, Coach.