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NMSU Athletic Director Mario Moccia inks new contract despite controversies surrounding athletic department

Jonny Coker

According to documents obtained by KTSM, New Mexico State University Athletic Director Mario Moccia signed a contract extension through 2028. Former Chancellor Dan Arvizu signed the contract with Moccia on the same day that Arvizu announced his departure from the university earlier this month.

Details of the contract came out the same day that ESPN reported instances of alleged sexual misconduct surrounding NMSU's athletic department.

This week, a lawsuit was filed by former NMSU players William Benjamin Jr. and Shakiru Odunewu alleging multiple instances of sexual assault and rape while they were part of the men's basketball team.

According to the lawsuit, “Beginning no later than November 15, 2022, Defendant NMSU had actual knowledge of, and was deliberately indifferent to, the inappropriate harassment, attacks, sexual assaults and batteries,” that were being perpetrated.

The extension comes as the university's athletic department is shrouded in controversy.

Jonny Coker is a Multimedia Journalist for KRWG Public Media. He has lived in Southern New Mexico for most of his life, growing up in the small Village of Cloudcroft, and earning a degree in Journalism and Media Studies at New Mexico State University.