Streaking Miners Shoot for Bowl Eligibility Vs. LA Tech Saturday Night
It’s been seven seasons, but 5-1 UTEP (2-0 Conference USA) is one win away from bowl eligibility. The Miners will look to chalk up win no. 6 when they host LA Tech (2-3, 1-0 C-USA) on Saturday night. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. in the Sun Bowl.
“[LA Tech is] obviously very talented and their quarterback is extremely talented,” UTEP Head Coach Dana Dimel said. “He’s played at two different Big 12 schools, and has a good resume. They have a running back from App State that’s really talented – a nice addition for them. They have some good receivers coming back from last year who are really talented players. Defensively, they have a bunch of sixth-year players on their defense. A bunch of guys who are super seniors. They’re talented, and we know that. [Skip Holtz] has taken his team to multiple bowl games in a row and won most of them. Skip does a good job there and has a really good program. It’ll be a big test for us.”
Saturday will be a special night as UTEP Athletics Hall of Fame inductees 2000 Western Athletic Conference Champion UTEP Miners, and one of the most prolific wide receivers in program history Lee Mays, will be honored at halftime. Both will be inducted on Friday night.
UTEP has won three consecutive games for the first time since 2014 after winning at Southern Miss, 26-13, on Oct. 9. The Miners are also 2-0 in league play for the first time since the 2008 season. UTEP’s 5-1 start is the first since 2010.
In C-USA, the Miners rank no. 1 in total defense (300.7 ypg allowed) and scoring defense (22.0 ppg). Nationally, UTEP ranks 16th in total defense.
LA Tech is coming off a 34-27 loss at no. 23 NC State on Oct. 2, prior to its bye week. The Bulldogs opened the season with a narrow 35-34 loss at Mississippi State. LA Tech won its opening league contest, defeating North Texas 24-17 on Sept. 25.
The Bulldogs are averaging 33.4 points per game, but giving up 33.4 points per contest. LA Tech ranks 121st nationally in total defense.
The Miners and Bulldogs can be heard on “The Home of UTEP Football” 600 ESPN El Paso with “The Voice of the Miners” Jon Teicher calling the action, former UTEP tight end Kevin Perry providing analysis and Mando Medina roaming the sidelines.