New Mexico freshman Hugh Greenwood has an opportunity to make an impact on a team that's in need of a point guard and might have found a good one from Australia. Greenwood signed with the Lobos in the spring, starred on Australia's Under-19 world championship team in the summer, and now could fill the position vacated by stalwart Dairese Gary.
Greenwood's comfort level playing far from home is an important factor given his ability to tip the Mountain West race in New Mexico's favor. According to the Albuquerque Journal, coach Steve Alford has him bonding with the other freshmen and fitting in well with teammates who are learning about his Aussie style.
"I was a little bit worn out when I got here, so the coaches gave me a little bit of time off," Greenwood says. "But I've been living out of home for four years now, so it's made it easier moving away from home. Then again, I’m on the other side of the world; not one plane flight away. That’s hard."
The biggest communication problem Dommo [fellow freshman Dominique Dunning] and Hughey say they have comes over food.
"It's a chicken burger," Greenwood says.
"Which is a chicken sandwich," says Dunning.
A potato gem?
"That's a tater tot," Dunning says he's learned.
"And if we go out and I forget my wallet, instead of saying 'I'll spot you,' he says 'I'll shout you.'"
Greenwood's smooth adjustment thus far is good news for a New Mexico team that is anchored by MWC player of the year candidate Drew Gordon and in need of stability at point guard. For now, it's good that Greenwood has found friendship. After signing with the Lobos, he called it mateship.
"In my short time in Albuquerque, I felt like it was a home away from home for me," he said. "Everywhere my family and I went, whether it was around campus, restaurants or even the mall, everyone was so friendly towards us and passionate about the Lobos. This is also what Australia is all about, 'Mateship' as we call it back in Australia."