The Battle of I-10 ,NMSU at UTEP , Don Haskins Center
Officials with UTEP Athletics announced Thursday morning that season ticket renewals for the 2020-21 UTEP men’s and women’s basketball campaigns are now live, and fans can also request season tickets now.
The UTEP men are coming off a 17-win season, chalking up nine more victories from the 2018-19 campaign. It was the largest win improvement of any program in C-USA.
The Miners produced their first winning season since 2015-16, more than doubled their conference wins from the season prior, and compiled 13 victories in the energetic Haskins Center. UTEP also made a return to the C-USA Tournament after winning its last four regular-season games to advance to postseason play.
“We are so excited for the 2020-21 Season! Our student-athletes and staff are working hard every day to display a tough and exciting brand of basketball for our community,” third-year UTEP Head Coach Rodney Terry said. “We return successful student-athletes combined with talented newcomers, and hope El Paso can rally behind these young men! We have a challenging schedule with games against multiple 2019-20 Conference Champions. Nowhere else has the tradition and history of UTEP Basketball – We need your support to make the Don Haskins Center the Hardest Place to play in C-USA!”
The Miners return five letter winners for the 2020-21 campaign. Bryson Williams, who was selected first team All-Conference USA and NABC District 11, was the only player to rank in the top five in C-USA in both scoring and rebounding. Williams, who started all 32 games, ranked third in the league in scoring average (17.8) and fifth in rebounds per contest (7.2).
Williams added three C-USA Player of Week honors to his resume, recorded a trio of 30-plus-point performances, and secured five double-doubles. Souley Boum returns after ranking first in C-USA in free-throw percentage (87.8) with the second-best clip in program history. Boum played in all 32 games, making 22 starts.
Efe Odigie (6.0 ppg, 3.8 rpg) played in 27 contests with three starts, Tydus Verhoeven (1.5 ppg, 2.3 rpg) saw action in 30 games with 12 starts, and Eric Vila (3.0 ppg, 5.0 rpg) started in 14 of 26 games played.
Xavier transfer and former four-star recruit Keonte Kennedy, a 6-5 guard, will be eligible after sitting out last season per NCAA transfer rules.
Men’s season tickets start at just $170 for upper reserved seats. Other prices are $345 (Copper Reserved), $565 (Bronze Reserved), $675 (Silver Reserved), $795 (Gold Reserved) and $1,625 (Floor).
The UTEP women are coming off their second winning season in three years under head coach Kevin Baker. The Miners finished 16-14 in 2019-20, capping the campaign with a 95-67 victory over Florida Atlantic in the opening round of the C-USA Championships.
UTEP set school conference tournament records for margin of victory (28), points (95) and three-pointers made (11) against the Owls, while tying the mark for field goals made (33), three-point percentage (50) and overall field-goal percentage (55). The effort advanced the Orange and Blue to the C-USA Tourney quarterfinals for the third consecutive year under Baker, continuing the longest such streak to start a career at the school. The tournament was canceled due to the COVID-19 outbreak, ending UTEP’s aspirations for a postseason bid.
The Miners look to build on their resurgence in 2020-21, with three starters and nine letter winners returning to the fold. Highlighting the returnees is El Paso native and 2020 All C-USA Freshman team honoree Katia Gallegos. She enjoyed a banner first season at UTEP, setting a program freshman record for assists (154) while also scoring 9.6 ppg and recording a team-best 1.7 steals per contest.
Fellow starters Avery Crouse (8.0 ppg, 3.3 rpg) and Sabine Lipe (4.7 ppg, 2.2 rpg) are back as well. Six newcomers will bolster the lineup, including two-time junior-college All-American Destiny Thurman.
“We are very excited about the upcoming season,” Baker said. “We finished this past year on an extremely high note and built a strong foundation for the future. We also signed some terrific new additions to the Miner family. There is a strong buzz surrounding our basketball program and with good reason. We will have another high tempo, fast scoring offense, and a stubborn defense. We want everyone to come out and watch this talented team compete for a Conference USA championship!”
Women’s season tickets start at $65 for adults and $40 for youth (ages 3-12). Fans can also purchase reserved Floor seating for $125.
Fans who did not have season tickets last year but are interested in signing up for the upcoming season can also call, email and visit the UTEP Athletics ticket webpage to fill out an electronic request form, and a member of the ticket staff or Miner Athletic Club will follow up with them. A four-month payment plan option will also be offered.