Just when it looked like UTEP is no longer feeble ... oh, the knees got kicked in again.
Because, into the fourth quarter Saturday, the Miners played shoulder-block with No. 25 Southern Mississippi. One couldn't tell which team was nationally ranked.
Then came the decades long haunting. Year after year ... yet again.
Southern Mississippi outscored UTEP 21-3 in the second half and won 31-13. UTEP was not good in gut-check time, after being really good when the halftime score was 10-10.
UTEP's offense was suffocated after halftime and Southern Miss would engineer a 98-yard, time-consuming drive to the e-zone, followed by a TD on a 68-yard run.
So UTEP is 4-4 with four games to play. That, already, is better than many predicted in the preseason.
Bottom line: This game was not a runway in disfavor of UTEP. Actually it was a real game into the fourth quarter (UTEP really does have O and D lines this year). But enter history: UTEP is awful in November. Check back decades (start with the 1970s). Nothing around here is colder in November than the Miner football team.
There's a so-so Rice opponent on the road next weekend, and a head-knocking East Carolina at Sun Bowl Stadium the next week ...
And lo.ooong odds the Miners will beat Tulsa.
And Central Florida to end the regular season? Nah. UTEP isn't the favorite.
UTEP will likely be rated the underdog in three of its last four games.
Two wins make the Miners bowl eligible. I think its mental games ( does UTEP have the mental discipline) from now on out?
This is a team that showed it can play with a good, nationally ranked Southern Miss for much of a game ... until their knees got kicked in.
Did the Miners' head (mental attitude) get kicked in like other Novembers? It's a head game now.