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Home | Tag Archives: utep football (page 11)

Tag Archives: utep football

Three Miners garner C-USA All-Freshman Honors

Irving, Texas Michael Lewis, Warren Redix and Cole Ford were named to the 2015 Conference USA All-Freshman team the league announcedon Tuesday.

Lewis played in all 12 games and made eight starts as a safety. The freshman finished the season with 38 tackles (28 solo). The Trinity, Texas native registered career-highs versus Southern Miss and FIU with six tackles. Lewis finished the season with six showings of four or more tackles. The safety was an integral part of the secondary that held LA Tech to only 307 total yards, which was a season low for the Bulldogs.

Redix played in 11 games seeing action as a wide receiver, running back, kick returner and punt returner. The El Paso native took over punt returner duties during the Miners victory over Rice. The all-around player notched three punt returns versus Old Dominion and notched a career-high 75 yards on four receptions. The freshman concluded the season ranked third on the team in receptions with 29 for 202 yards and added 136 yards (5.9 avg.) on the ground.

Ford saw action in the last nine games of the season. The true freshman was utilized as a blocking tight end, helping the Miners establish a running game later in the season. The Bothell, Washington native caught two passes for 12 yards versus Old Dominion, including a career-long of 14 yards.

Eight Miners were also named 2015 C-USA All-Honorable Mention. Leading the offense was Will Hernandez, who is part of the offensive unit that only allowed 12 sacks in 12 games. UTEP ranks first in the league and is seventh nationally in fewest sacks allowed.

Hayden Plinke was named to the 2015 John Mackey Award Midseason Watch List. The transfer tallied 37 receptions for 405 yards, ranking second in both categories for the Miners. The tight end registered career-high nine receptions for 85 yards against Rice.

Aaron Jones played in the first two games of the season before sustaining a season ending injury. The junior rushed for 209 yards on 32 attempts (6.5 avg.) and a touchdown. The El Paso native gained 139 yards on 17 carries, including a school-record 91-yard sprint for a touchdown and had a 24-yard touchdown catch versus Texas Tech.

On defense, Alvin Jones garnered honors as the sophomore led the team in tackles (93), solo stops (48), sacks (6.5), tackles for loss (14.5) and two safeties. The linebacker is tied for first in the league in tackles for loss and rates sixth in sacks. The El Paso native recorded a three-sack performance against UTSA tying second most in a single game in C-USA.

Nick Usher earned recognition ranking second on the team in sacks (3.5), tackles for loss (10.0) and quarterback hurries (four) – all career highs in a single season and is fourth on the team with a season-best 46 tackles. The defensive end finished the season with a forced fumble, a fumble recovery, a blocked kick, 3.5 sacks and five quarterback hurries.

Team captain, Jimmy Musgrave concluded his senior campaign ranking second on the team with 59 tackles. The linebacker led the team in tackles versus UTSA with a career-high 12. The senior notched 7.5 tackles for loss, two sacks, one pass breakup, two quarterback hurry and one fumble forced.

On special teams, Jay Mattox was 15-for-19 on field goal conversions and rates third in the league in field goal percentage (78.9). The kicker led the Miners in points with 68 and was 23-24 in extra attempts. The sophomore also averaged 63.9 on kickoffs with 31 touchbacks this season.

Newcomer Alan Luna finished his first season ranking 14th in the nation and second in the league in punting averaging 44.4. The sophomore kicked 65 punts for 2,885 yards, including 15 inside the 20-yard line and 21 punts of 50 or more yards. He recorded a season-high in punts (eight), yards (375) and average (46.9) at FIU.

Junior College Signing Day is slated for Wednesday, Dec. 16.

Author: UTEP Athletics

UTEP edges North Texas 20-17 to end the 2015 season

Freshman Warren Redix’s first career touchdown – a 32-yard reception – and Dashone Smith’s 65-yard pick-six surged UTEP to a 20-17 victory over North Texas on a chilly Saturday afternoon at Apogee Stadium.

“We had five turnovers and it wasn’t pretty,” head coach Sean Kugler said. “These kids are resilient, they fought to the end and I’m very proud of them.”

The Miners ended the 2015 season with a 5-7 mark (3-5 in Conference USA), while the Mean Green finished with one victory (1-11, 1-7 C-USA). It was the second year in a row UTEP won its final regular season game.

Redix’s go-ahead score came at 7:51 remaining in the contest. With the score 17-13 after a Cortney Finney 13-yard fumble return for a score, the Miners used a jet sweep to the right as Kavika Johnson pitched the ball to Redix who cleared the edge and took it to the house.

North Texas opened the scoring with a Trevor Moore 28-yard field goal. Jaquan White fumbled on UTEP’s prior possession that helped set up the score.

UTEP took a 6-3 lead, as it opened the second half with an eight-play, 75-yard drive that resulted in Johnson’s first-career rushing score – a five-yard run. The Miners ran the ball on all eight plays, led by Warren Redix’s career-long run of 27 yards that put his squad at the North Texas 29-yard line. Johnson added a 19-yard rush, while Jeremiah Laufasa rushed for 19 yards. However, Jay Mattox missed the PAT.

“We put Kavika in to spark the offense and he did a very good job of that,” Kugler noted. “So we stuck with him in the second half and our offense did a good job.”

UTEP gained only 84 first-half yards, but finished with 256 total yards in the game.

Tre Johnson gave the Mean Green a 10-6 lead when he returned a punt 53 yards during the middle of the third quarter. UTEP answered with Smith’s pick six, giving the away team a 13-10 advantage in the third period at the 5:32 mark.

With the score 20-17 in favor of UTEP and 4:18 remaining in the game, North Texas’ DaMarcus Smith ran for a 32-yard gain to the UTEP 30-yard line. But a targeting penalty and an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty knocked back the Mean Green to its own 40-yard line. UTEP forced a turnover on downs on the drive to help seal the victory.

Johnson led the rushing attack with 75 yards and a score, while Laufasa grinded out 62 yards. UTEP rushed for 187 yards on 48 attempts. Redix led the team with 42 yards on three catches and a score.

Despite the offense turning the ball over five times, the UTEP defense yielded season-lows in total yards (205) and first downs (10).

“It was a credit to our defense playing hard the entire time,” Kugler said.

Trey Brown led the defense with seven tackles, while Jimmy Musgrave, who knocked out starting quarterback Andrew McNulty with a rib injury, tallied five stops. Roy Robertson-Harris chipped in with a team-leading 2.0 tackles for loss and Alvin Jones, who left the game with an injury, registered a sack early in the contest. Jones finished with 6.5 sacks in 2015.

Author: UTEP Athletics

Miners drop Heartbreaker to LA Tech 17 to 15

The UTEP football team dropped a heartbreaker at the Sun Bowl Saturday afternoon to LA Tech by a tally of 17-15. The loss drops the Miners to 4-7 (2-5 C-USA) on the year while the Bulldogs improve to 8-3 (6-1 C-USA).

“I’m pleased with how our guys have fought all year long,” UTEP head coach Sean Kugler said. “I told them how proud of them I was. I love this team and the whole team fought.”

UTEP was able to hold a potent LA Tech offense to its lowest point total of the year and had a chance to secure the victory with 1:49 left in the game. Wind, which played a huge factor all day long, may have influenced Jay Mattox’s 32-yard field goal that sailed wide left. If the kick was converted, it would have given the Miners a 18-17 lead with less than two minutes to play.

Freshman running back TK Powell was an instrumental cog in the UTEP time of possession domination; the Miners possessed the ball for 37:49. Powell rushed for a career-high 124 yards and had gains of 37, 36 and 14 yards. The 124 yards by Powell and 226 yards by the team were the most yards the vaunted LA Tech defense has conceded all year. Powell’s 37-yard rush in the second quarter was the longest rushing play allowed by the Bulldogs this season.

The 226 yards rushing by UTEP was the most since they rambled for 269 yards against NM State on week three (Sept. 19). Powell becomes the second player for UTEP to run for 100-plus yards this year (Aaron Jones-Texas Tech, Sept. 12).

la tech at utep-2The defense came out with a vengeance on “Senior Day.” The Miners limited the prolific LA Tech attack to only 307 total yards, which was a season low for the UTEP defense and season low for the LA Tech offense.

The defense also forced its second safety of the year when Alvin Jones dropped LA Tech running back Kenneth Dixon in the endzone in the third quarter. It was the first safety that LA Tech has allowed since 2011.

LA Tech started the game with a 13 play, 73-yard drive that resulted in a 19-yard field goal by Jonathan Barnes. The Miners began their scoring regimen in the second quarter with a 12 play, 87-yard touchdown drive that ended with an 11-yard touchdown pass from Kavika Johnson to Cole Freytag.

Mattox added a 37-yard field goal just before the half that pushed the UTEP lead to 10-3, but the Bulldogs didn’t go quietly into halftime. LA Tech went 82 yards on six plays to even up the score when Jeff Driskel connected with Carlos Henderson for a 16-yard touchdown.

LA Tech struck quick in the third quarter on its first drive of the second half when Driskel hooked up with Henderson (54-yard TD) for his second score of the game.

la tech at utep-6The UTEP defense was the beneficiary of excellent special teams play by Alan Luna. The freshman punter was able to drop three punts inside the 20 and two were downed inside the 10-yard line.

After UTEP downed a punt at the seven-yard line midway through the third quarter, Gino Bresolin and Jones combined for back-to-back tackle for losses, the second of which Jones dropped the Dixon in the endzone for a safety.

Mattox knocked in his second field goal of the game early in the fourth quarter to cut the lead 17-15 in favor of LA Tech. Mattox has now made 15 field goals this year, which is a career high.

Gino Bresolin then caused some havoc on the defensive line when Dixon fumbled a ball with 9:20 left in the game. Bresolin pounced on the ball and gave UTEP an unbelievable opportunity, but the offense was unable to cash it in.

The defense held Dixon to his lowest rushing total of the year with 39 yards on 19 carries.

The Miners had one last offensive attempt left with 44 seconds to play in the game, but the LA Tech defense proved stingy, and didn’t allow UTEP to get in field-goal range.

UTEP will head to North Texas next weekend to play the Mean Green on Nov. 28.

Author: UTEP Athletics

Old Dominion pulls away late, downs UTEP 31-21

NORFOLK, Va. – Mack Leftwich threw a trio of touchdowns, but UTEP fell to Old Dominion, 31-21, in front of a sold out crowd (20,118) at S.B. Ballard Stadium on a brisk Saturday afternoon.

The Miners (4-6, 2-4 Conference USA), with the loss, will need to win their next two contests to have a shot at bowl eligibility, while the Monarchs (5-5, 3-3 C-USA) are one win closer to eligibility.

“We were too inconsistent,” head coach Sean Kugler said. “Old Dominion did a good job in the second half of shutting down our offense and forced a lot of three-and-outs. That put us in a tough spot and we were playing catch up from there on.”

The Miners were outscored 14-6 in the second half, as the Monarchs rattled off 196 yards of total offense, including 78 yards on the ground.

With the score 15-10 in favor of UTEP, Old Dominion quarterback David Washington found Zach Pascal on a 26-yard score with six seconds remaining in the first half, while connecting with Jonathon Durhart on an 11-yard touchdown toss with 1:02 left in the third quarter to make the score 24-15.

Washington threw for 291 yards on 26-of-42 passing and Pascal tied a school record with 12 receptions for 145 yards.

“(Washington) is very athletic and difficult to deal with,” Kugler said. “He makes great plays with his feet.”

The Miners took an early 6-0 lead, as they opened the contest with 10-play, 71-yard scoring drive that resulted in a Tyler Batson seven-yard touchdown reception. True freshman running back Treyvon Hughes highlighted the drive by grinding out a career-long 19-yard run to help set up the score. The extra point attempt was failed after a bad snap to the holder.

The Monarchs answered, as Chris Kirtley connected on a 23-yard field goal attempt, making the score 6-3.

Autrey Golden, who needs one kickoff return for a touchdown to tie the NCAA record, ran back a 61-yard return on the following kickoff that helped set up a Jay Mattox 22-yard field goal and a 9-3 UTEP lead.

Ray Lawry, the C-USA rushing leader entering the contest, gave his squad the lead 10-9 at the beginning of the second quarter. On a third and four, Lawry rambled 42 yards to the end zone, as Washington made a key block at the beginning of the play.

UTEP would take the lead again, but for the last time. Leftwich led the Miners on a seven-play, 51-yard drive that ended with a Jaquan White 12-yard touchdown reception.

Leftwich tied his career high with the three scoring passes on 21-of-38 passing for 193 yards and two interceptions. Warren Redix tallied a career-best 75 yards on four receptions, while Jaquan White tied his career high with a pair of touchdown receptions.

But the Miners had multiple drops on key possessions, while Leftwich was sacked twice – both on play-action drop backs.

“We were a bit inconsistent, had some drops and other times we had guys open but got sacked,” Kugler said.

Jeremy Cox put the game away with a 42-yard scamper, giving the Monarchs the lead 31-15. Cox led the rushing attack with 84 yards on 15 attempts.

Old Dominion tallied 441 yards of total offense to UTEP’s 305 yards.

UTEP will close out its home portion of the 2015 schedule against C-USA West rival LA Tech (7-3, 5-1 C-USA) on Senior Day. Kickoff is set for 1:30 p.m. in the Sun Bowl.  The 2015 senior class will be honored following the contest.

Author:  UTEP Athletics

UTEP to tackle Rice Friday night in the Sun Bowl

The UTEP football team will take on Rice in a Lone Star State Showdown on Friday night (Nov. 6) in the Sun Bowl.  Kickoff is slated for 6 p.m. MT.

UTEP (3-5, 1-3 Conference USA) and Rice (4-4, 2-2 C-USA) will face each other on a Friday night for the second consecutive season. Kickoff is slated for 6 p.m. and the game will be televised on CBS Sports Network. Both squads are coming off losses to league foes, as UTEP fell at Southern Miss (34-13) and Rice was beaten by LA Tech (42-17).

Friday is also “Military Night” with a special halftime salute to members of the armed forces past and present.

Friday’s contest will mark the 300th game played in the Sun Bowl. The Owls defeated the Miners, 31-13, on Nov. 21, 2014 in Houston. The contest is the first non-Saturday game for the Miners in the Sun Bowl since hosting Houston on Thursday, Sept. 19, 2011. UTEP is looking for its first win against Rice since the 2010 season.

UTEP’s contest against Rice will mark game no. 300 in the Sun Bowl. The Miners’ first-ever game in the stadium came on Sept. 21, 1963, a 34-7 victory over North Texas State. UTEP is 132-164-3 all-time in the Sun Bowl. During that time, UTEP is 4-4 versus Rice in the stadium.

Please note that due to Friday being a regular class day, there will be no inner campus tailgating for this game.  Outer campus lots will open for parking and tailgating at 4 p.m. on FridayRV lots will open at 5 p.m. on Thursday.

UTEP’s final home game of 2015 is on Nov. 21 against LA Tech.

Buy one ticket, get one free for Friday’s game.  Single-game prices start at just $10.  Call 747-5234 for tickets.

Author: UTEP Athletics


Southern Miss beats UTEP 34 to 13

HATTIESBURG, Miss. – Nick Mullens threw four touchdowns (23-of-33 for 277 yards) and DJ Thompson hauled in 10 receptions for 112 yards and a pair of scores, as Southern Miss defeated UTEP 34-13 on a rainy Saturday at M.M. Roberts Stadium.

Southern Miss (6-3, 4-1 Conference USA) reached bowl eligibility, while UTEP dropped to 1-3 in C-USA play (3-5 overall).

A lightning delay initially stopped the game, but a tornado warning ensued, delaying the contest for more than an hour. The game resumed with 14:54 left in the game. The Miners, following the delay, took the ball and drove 57 yards on nine plays that ended with a LaQuintus Dowell one-yard touchdown run, that made the score 27-13.

With less than 10 minutes to play, UTEP forced an incomplete pass on a Traun Roberson breakup on second and six, but the Golden Eagles converted the third down on a Michael Thomas 39-yard reception.

On the same drive, Southern Miss put the game away when punter Tyler Sarrazin ran for an eight-yard touchdown on a fake field goal.

The Golden Eagles struck first with an eight-play, 63-yard drive that resulted in a Mullens 11-yard touchdown pass to Thomas. Traun Roberson wrapped up the receiver at the one-yard line and came close to batting the ball down.

The Miners answered with a 17-yard drive  (77 yards) that resulted in a 37-yard Jay Mattox field goal, making the score 7-3. The offense chewed up 8:49 off the clock on the drive.

With the score 7-3, UTEP forced a turnover when Nick Usher recorded a sack and forced fumble on Mullens at the UTEP 28-yard line. Gino Bresolin recovered the ball, but the Miners couldn’t convert the turnover into points as Mattox missed on a 50-yard field goal attempt with 48 seconds remaining in the half.

Southern Miss took advantage of the missed opportunity and drove the ball 68 yards on three plays. The drive took all of 33 seconds, as Mullens found Jalen Richard on a screen pass for a nine-yard score. The drive was highlighted by a Richard 38-yard run into UTEP territory and a Michael Thomas reception in triple coverage at the four-yard line. The extra point was missed, making the score 13-3.

Mattox also connected on a 26-yard field goal at the 4:11 mark of the third quarter, cutting the deficit to 14 points (20-6).

Jeremiah Laufasa registered career highs in receiving yards (54) on a trio of catches, including a career-long 39-yard reception. Cole Freytag also registered a career-best three receptions for 41 yards.

Alvin Jones led the defense with eight tackles – his fourth time leading the team in 2015. Roy Robertson-Harris registered seven stops, while Usher and Kelvin Fisher Jr. each tallied six tackles.

The Miners will return to the Sun Bowl, as they play host to Rice on Friday, Nov. 6. Kickoff is slated for 6 p.m. MT and will be televised on CBS Sports Network.

Author: UTEP Athletics

UTEP Football Completes Final Scrimmage of 2015

UTEP head football coach Sean Kugler and his staff will make a few final decisions regarding the depth chart, as the Miners wrapped up the final scrimmage on Saturday morning before the Sept. 5 kickoff at Arkansas on ESPNU (1:30 p.m. MT).

The offense tallied 411 total yards and scored seven touchdowns, but the defense was no slouch as it made key plays to halt the offense during different scenarios.

The game scenarios included: move the ball drill, which started at the offense’s own 25-yard line, the red zone offense at the 20-yard line, gotta have it (a fourth-and-six from the 50-yard line), the two-minute drill from the offense’s own 35-yard line, backed up at own one-yard line and the four-minute drill (running the clock out with 2:20 to play).

Garrett Simpson led the Miners to their only score during the move-the-ball drill. Simpson was 4-for-5 for 42 yards and a 10-yard touchdown strike to Cole Freytag.

UTEP quarterbacks combined for 231 yards on 24-of-48 passing and three touchdowns with zero interceptions. Mack Leftwich threw for 71 yards (8-of-18), Ryan Metz was 4-of-11 for 46 yards, and Kavika Johnson went 8-of-14 for 98 yards and two touchdowns.

Johnson mostly ran the red zone offense as he found Jaquan White for a pair of 20-yard scores. White caught three passes for 58 yards. Warren Redix paced the squad with four receptions for 51 yards.

Former UTEP basketball player Cedrick Lang, now playing tight end in his fifth year, hauled in a 10-yard pass from Simpson. Freytag tallied 28 yards on two catches while Autrey Golden registered 38 yards on three receptions.

The Miners’ rushing attack combined for 180 yards on 37 carries and four touchdowns. T.K. Powell led the charge with 57 yards on eight carries, including a three-yard plunge into the end zone. Johnson added two scores on the ground, one for two yards and the second for five yards. Metz found the end zone on a 20-yard sprint during a red zone drill.

Jeremiah Laufasa scored the first rushing touchdown of the day on a two-yard rush and Treyvon Hughes tallied 40 yards on five carries.

On the defense, Kalon Beverly led the squad with nine tackles, while recovering a fumble he forced. Adrian Hynson tallied five stops; Jimmy Musgrave registered four tackles, while Kelvin Fisher Jr. added three tackles and a pass breakup. Brain Madunezim recorded the only sack of the morning. Roy Robertson-Harris got into the action with two tackles for loss and Cooper Foster tallied a tackle, quarterback hurry and a pass breakup.

UTEP will open the home portion of the schedule on Sept. 26 at 6 p.m. against Incarnate Word. For season tickets, call 915.747.6150.

Author: UTEP

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