This story is a staff report from The Paper.

Vaccines or a negative COVID-19 test are now required for fans attending basketball games at The Pit. On Monday, the UNM’s Department of Athletics announced the new directive starts with the women’s and men’s basketball games next week on Tuesday, December 28. The department said the new requirements were due to surging COVID-19 numbers and the emerging threat of the Omicron variant.

According to a news release, Lobo fans will have three ways to come and enjoy The Pit.  The simplest will be for patrons to provide proof of vaccination status. Proof of vaccination status means having two shots of Pfizer or Moderna, or one shot of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine (or AstraZeneca for international fans), with the last shot received two weeks prior to the date of event entry.

If you’re not vaccinated, you must provide proof of a negative COVID test. A PCR test must be within 72 hours and an antigen test must be within 24 hours of the event. Home COVID tests are not valid for this type of entry.  For fans under 12 years old will be admitted without proof of vaccination.

“The university has a responsibility to our student athletes, coaches, staff and the thousands of passionate Lobo fans, to do what we can to protect the health and safety of those competing, coaching, working, watching, and cheering the game,” said Vice President/Director of Athletics Eddie Nuñez. “We ask for your understanding and patience as the new requirements are implemented.”