Texas-El Paso Miners
Location: El Paso, TX
Coach: Dana Dimel (1-11) 2nd Season at UTEP
Stadium: Sun Bowl (Capacity 51,500)
14th: Conference USA
7th: C-USA West Division
65th: Group of Five
205th: Division I
2018 In a Sentence: UTEP had an awful season in 2018, starting with an opening weekend loss to FCS member Northern Arizona. It never got any better from there, with the Miners only win of the season (1-11, 1-7 CUSA) coming against equally maligned Rice.
Biggest Shoes to Fill: RB AJ Hotchkins was the only real bright spot on an otherwise bad football team. The graduate transfer from Oregon had a great senior season with 126 tackles and seven sacks.
Key Players: With a team that struggled so badly in 2018 its hard to come up with one key player. The Miners will need a step up in effort all across the roster if they don’t want to repeat last year’s poor record. But if one player will be key to turn this team around it is QB Kai Locksley, who is now healthy after a severe ankle injury hampered his production last season.
Fearless Prediction: UTEP had a horrid season in 2018. Nothing that occurred in the off season indicates that the Miners will be any better than the worst team in FBS again in 2019.
Jamie is a proud 2002 graduate of James Madison University. He’s witnessed the growth of the program from no one in the stands in 1998, to the hiring of Mickey Matthews, to the 2004 National Championship, to the 2008 team, to the struggles in the early 2010s, and finally the rebuild under Mike Houston. He also allegedly really enjoys Washington, DC-based Stanley Cup winners.
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