NMSU Player Delivers Sucker Punch to Opposing Athlete

New Mexico State forward Robert Carpenter was issued a flagrant foul 2 and subsequently ejected after punching Liberty forward Shiloh Robinson in the face during the first quarter of the Aggies’ 79-73 home overtime win. The two were tussling in the paint. As the action moved the other way, Robinson turned and bumped into Carpenter, who was guarding him. Carpenter then threw the haymaker, knocking Robinson down onto the court. The Flames forward did not return to the game afterward. Aggies head coach Jason Hooten, who said he had not had an opportunity to review the incident, believes Carpenter will be suspended by Conference USA. “Even if there was something that put Rob in that state of mind to do what he did, it’s still not acceptable,” Hooten said after the game. “That’s not the way that we’re going to do things here at New Mexico State University.” He also apologized to Liberty’s head coach Ritchie McKay. Carpenter, who is averaging 10.2 points and 4.1 rebounds per game, will also sit out New Mexico’s next game, suspension or not, according to Hooten. “My rule is he won’t play on Saturday,” he said. Hooten added that Carpenter is a “really good kid, there’s just no room, no room for that in the game, at all.” Carpenter, a 6-foot-7 junior, transferred to NMSU from Mississippi Valley State. The Aggies are 10-12, good for third place in CUSA.