UTEP has rarely been this healthy going into a season, but there could be as many three back-ups missing the opener in addition to the three suspended players. Linebacker Jeremy Springer reinjured his sprained ankle and will be a game-time decision, though coach Mike Price indicated he would be limited if he plays.
This has been a problematic position in terms of health. The official No. 2 on the depth chart is true freshman DeAndre Little but the staff isn't sure yet it wants to pull his redshirt, as he would be a third-teamer starting next week. Aubrey Alexius is more likely to be the new backup linebacker, though starting outside linebacker Isaiah Carter could play there as well.
Backup guard Paul Santillian has a stress fracture and will be replaced by Nathan McCage. Tight end Elijah Goldtrap is out and will be replaced by Kevin Perry and Craig Wenrick.
Still, that's not a long list and there's a chance all but Santillian, who is out a month, could be back next week against Houston when suspended Travaun Nixon and possibly Evan Davis will return.