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November 08, 2008

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Lowercase Ray

Actually the 2006 season ended at 5-7, which makes for a good next goal. More important is that this team continues to battle, they haven't given up. If MP can instill that in this young team, next year should be a good year indeed.

miner3223

Just imagine how unstoppable the offense would be if Trevor was healthy and did not need surgery.

ccamp003

Joe, you are a shame,to comment on the success of the Miner Football Team. Obviously, you look for a hitch to latch on to and criticize the driver when the going is rough. The team DOES BETTER on away games, except for Tulsa, only because they're far away from the negativity of this community. I'm shocked the EPT's didnt have them losing before the plane took-off. If you expect them to lose, they WILL lose. If you expect them to win, they WILL win. Dont you get it? LAW-OF-ATTRACTION? DUH.

just a thought

I don't know what UL-Laf team I was looking at but the Miners manhandled this team. Congratulations on a much needed win!

7-5 would be nice. Does 6-6 get this team to a bowl? Bowl eligible and bowl selected are two different things entirely.

If they can take it one game at a time everything is laid out for them. SMU is now the most important game of the season.

Lowercase Ray

JAT’s question of whether 6-6 gets this team to a bowl game got me contemplating what the next three weeks of CUSA FB may bring. Such contemplation will necessitate that assumptions be made. First assumption made is that since CUSA has six tie-ins to bowls, there will be only six bowl spots; those going to the top six teams that finish the season. That basically guarantees Tulsa at 8-1 and Rice at 7-3 will take up two spots. Also ECU, who next plays USM, UAB and UTEP, will surely win one more to get to 7 wins and take a spot; that brings to three the spots now filled. Memphis at 5-5 has UCF and Tulane, they should win both and pick up a fourth spot. That leaves Houston (5-4), Marshall (4-5), UTEP (4-5) and USM (4-6) to battle for the last two spots that are left. USM which is a ½ game behind this grouping, has ECU next and needs to win that game if they are to get to six games. I suspect ECU will knock them out of the chase. That leaves three team chasing two spots. Houston actually has a ½ game up on Memphis, but Houston must still play Tulsa, UTEP and Rice; that’s a tough three games. I suspect they’re looking at UTEP as being their best chance of getting bowl eligible. Marshall has UCF, Rice and Tulsa. They need to win against UCF because winning one of their last two games will be challenge enough; let alone having to win both. UTEP, has SMU, Houston and ECU to play; they need to win against SMU to give themselves a chance to get to six wins at Houston. That game I suspect may become the most important game left for both teams.
So that’s my best guess where things are going to be. Three teams (Marshall, Houston and UTEP) trying to get to six wins to claim one of two bowl spots that will be left. The teams that win the games they are suppose to win and shows up ready to play every game will have the best chances of going bowling. Those that falter will be watching them on TV.

rj

The loss to NMSU I think ultimately keeps us out of postseason play, which is a shame.

We could have easily gone to the bowl in Ft. Worth or Houston and had a solid crowd show up.

So if anything...Aggie fans should be happy they ruined our season.
Imagine if Trevor and Terrell play in that game, its no contest.
So yeah, im still bitter about that one.

I'm still keeping hope alive, but realistically we beat SMU this week, then have to go on the road and play two good teams that will be playing for a bowl bid as well...not a good combination.

It still amazes me how good TV really is.
The guy can make every throw. Is this guy really just a Soph?

Ive been a supporter of CMP this entire season because I dont think anyone else could have developed Trevor the way Coach Price has. The guy just knows how to develop QB's and run an efficient offense. We're averaging about 35 pts per game since the UT game. The defense finally stepped up, and behold..we looked pretty good.

I hate to look ahead, but i think we're setting up for a big season next year.

Our skill guys will all be back, and the D gets the system under their belt.

There may still be hope for this year though, maybe somehow, someway we beat Houston or ECU on the road.

jdazzle

rj

The "what if" game changes nothing and means nothing. "What if" NMSU practiced exclusively to play against a QB more similar to theirs, and instead had to defend against a running QB? Would they have beaten us by five touchdowns in that case?

I don't think that any team that doesn't have a winning record deserves to go to a bowl game. Especially when the team keeps getting its head handed to it in bowl games. Just my opinion.

I do agree that next year holds lots of potential for the Miners.

Vic

RJ,
The "we had 3 players out vs. NMSU" excuse is getting old.

Just so you know, we lost our NT and CB in mid August due to shoulder injuries.
Our TE tore his ACL in the 1st series of the season opener and our LT was lost in the first series vs. Utep.
All were starters and both team were far from 100%!!

Jdazzle is right, we practiced for Vittatoe and not Thomas. That little guy gave you a better chance.

With all this said. I hope Utep goes to a bowl game. Everyone at NMSU has thrown in the towel and beating a team that went bowling, would be a PLUS and the highlight to very dissapointing season!!!

Good luck and FIRE MUMME!!!

Double Reverse

The $64K question going forward, and not looking back into the past, is can the Miners capitalize on this weekend's victory and win out the rest of the games?

I also wonder about sending a team to a bowl that doesn't have a winning record, which means sending any team with a 6-6 record. However, if it is allowed, then why not?

rj

Jdazzle, neither you or I make the rules for bowl eligibility, so if a team is 6-6 and goes to a bowl, then more power to them.

Ru telling me you wouldnt watch Utep play or cheer for them in a bowl game if they reach six wins? thats ridiculous.

I dont care whether you win your six games by one point each time, and lose six by 30, if you're bowl eligible, then your bowl eligible.

And this argument of NMSU not prepared for Thomas is absolutely absurd.

Thomas gives us a better chance to win than Vittatoe because NMSU didnt prepare for him? WTF!

In my opinion, its easier to play defense when you could bring 8-9 guys in the box because you know 90 percent of the time its going to be a run!

Its was obvious we were not going to be airing it out with Thomas, so really you just key on him and the other backs.

And Vic, the other guys you mentioned who were hurt arent difference makers. All their big players played, and you still barely beat us.

Gabe

Ah, come on now, UTEP beat a very weak LLAFAY team!
The difference was quite evident that LLAFAY didn't belong in the same field with UTEP!
Maybe the miners should join their conference, there, they might stand a chance at winning some games, and being competetive!
As far as for UTEP's remaining C-USA games, they don't stand a chance in hell!
Well, for disconsolate UTEP fans, here we go again, "wait til next year", crap!

Vic

RJ,
NMSU Defense is 110 in the country vs. the run, and top 20 vs. the pass.

Yes, Thomas legs and the zone read option exposed a serious weakness vs. Vittatoes arm.

As far as some players not being "difference makers." It just depends how much depth there is at the position.
Good Depth= no difference
No Depth= BIG difference

Either way, good luck the rest of the way.

Toasted Whitebred

ULL has lost 4 games - to Southern Miss, Illinois by 3, Kansas State by 8 and UTEP. One loss at home to UTEP.

They have a good opportunity to go to a bowl this year.

The Miners dominated a good football team as they did earlier in the year to UCF.

This was an important win but SMU is the most important game of the season as stated by JAT I believe. Let's fill up the Sun Bowl!

Lowercase Ray

RJ,
I too would love to see the Miners make it to a bowl game. It does well for a team to keep training for another month getting ready for it, and if they are competitive in the game, it helps bring some notoriety to the program. It is not so much the record that the team brings into the post season but how well the team is playing towards the end of the season. The two prior bowls that the miners went to they were 8-4, but the problem was that they played well at the beginning of the season and then played badly towards the end. They were never able to regain the competitive game they had early on. In an earlier post I made the statement that I’d rather not see UTEP make it to a bowl game then for them to go into another one and be blown away; as they were by Toledo in the 2005 GMAC bowl. Where this situation is different now, is that in order for them to reach a bowl game it would require that they play well these last three games. A much better situation if your winning 2 or 3 games rather then to be losing 2 or 3 games before going into a bowl game. I discussed in an earlier post why UTEP should beat the Cajuns, I now make the argument that UTEP will have to play even better to beat these next three CUSA teams, especially in their stadiums. Remember, NO PENCILED IN Ws!

Right from the start of the season I proposed that for a young team it is not how well they start but how much progress they make throughout the season. If in these next three games they are competing right to the end of each game, then I will see it as having been a good year. They will leave me with an expectation that next year will be better.

2myeye

Hey Joe: Who is writing your positive columns while you're away?

jdazzle

rj,

I looked back at my post and nowhere does it say I wouldn't cheer for the Miners or not watch them. I simply feel that bowl games shouldn't reward mediocrity. A 6 and 6 season seems pretty mediocre to me, but maybe not to you.

Toasted Whitebred

Complacency might be the Miners biggest threat this week as they prepare for SMU.

The Mustangs are not a good football team especially on the Defensive side of the ball.

The Miners have not played too many teams this year who were worse in total defense then they are but SMU is certainly that and they are a truly one-dimensional offensive team. Number 15 nationally in passing offense and dead last in rushing offense.

The ULL coaches said that the Miners beat them by keeping their offense off the field and their defense on. The Miners have done that in most of their wins this season including an unlikely win at Southern Miss.

That I feel is the Miners key to the rest of the season. Help the defense out by controlling the clock on offense. SMU is terrible on defense. East Carolina and Houston have trouble with the run.

Lowercase Ray

Not to question June Jones coaching, I know he's a great offensive mind and everything, but can someone explain to me how you sit your only experienced QB (a Junior) in place of a true Freshman? I had thought Justin Willis had graduated, transfered or something. Out of all the QBs on that team, Justin Willis is the only one that isn't a freshman. It's not like he played badly last year. He was the team's leading runner, he passed for 2944 yards and he's a good sized QB. Last year he passed for 259 yds ran for 45 yds and lead SMU to 45 pts against UTEP. Unfortunately for him their defense allowed 49 pts for the loss. Now it seems that SMU's starting QB might not start this week and he's going to put in another Freshman QB? Not complaining, no sir! We'll take any advantages June Jones wants to send our way.

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UTEP sports blog: Joe Muench has been a sports writer and a sports editor in El Paso for decades, but he’s best known as the columnist everyone loves to talk about. His UTEP athletics blog starts up the conversation again.

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