The New Mexico Lobos men's basketball team represents the University of New Mexico, competing in the Mountain West Conference (MWC) in NCAA Division I. UNM established basketball as a varsity sport in 1899 and began competing with regional colleges after establishing an athletics department in 1920.
Lobo basketball first achieved national prominence after Bob King was hired as head coach in 1962. King transformed a moribund program into a consistent winner and produced future ABA MVP Mel Daniels. The Lobos won the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) championship in 1964 and 1968, making frequent appearances in national rankings. The team reached the NIT tournament final in 1964 and received its first bid to the NCAA tournament in 1968. The success of the program continued after King departed, winning WAC titles in 1974, 1978, and 1994, winning the conference tournament in 1993 and 1996, and regularly earning post-season tournament bids.
The Pit, formally named Dreamstyle Arena, is an indoor arena in Albuquerque, New Mexico, serving primarily as the home venue of the University of New Mexico Lobo basketball teams. The facility opened in 1966 as University Arena but gained the nickname "The Pit" due to its innovative subterranean design, with its playing floor 37 feet (11 m) below street level. The arena is located on the UNM South Campus and has a seating capacity of 15,411 for basketball and up to 13,480 for concerts, with 40 luxury suites and 365 club seats.
The Pit is widely recognized as one of the top college basketball venues in the U.S., and as one of the loudest. The New Mexico Lobos have enjoyed tremendous success at The Pit, winning over 80% of their games there, and attendance has consistently been among the best in college basketball. Renovations completed in 2010 added more space and state-of-the-art amenities for fans, coaches and players.