When was the last time UTEP won a defensive-type game with a shrug of a running back's shoulder pads?
On Saturday, on a night UTEP lost quarterback Nick Lamaison early (injury) and Eastern Carolina's passing offense was met head on by UTEP ... holy cow, senior running back Joe Banyard scored the winning TD with a 77-yard run in the fourth quarter ... when UTEP doesn't often win.
UTEP 22, those Pirates 17.
What a different type of game for UTEP. It was defensive on both sides until that run. Usually UTEP is enfulfed in an offensive free-for-all.
So figure this: UTEP lost quarterback Lamaison (bad groin pull) and kicker Dakota Warren (another groin pull). Quaterback. Kicker. Both out. Let's pray for the Miners' soul?
In comes brainiac UTEP QB Carson Meeger , who doesn't screw up. Brainiac has something to do with that. I say forget about his supposedly less-than-bullet arm strength. He's a mental winner. And, in a weird moment, the kickoff guy, Steven Valedez, kicked a 46-yard field goal because Warren was out.
Yes, UTEP really lucked out with what it put on offense, Amen again. This doesn't usually happen in Utepia. Certainly not in November, where the win puts Coach Mike Price at 10-19 after Halloweens.
Eastern Carolina (now 4-6) was a team that moved on offense at will this season ... but didn't in El Paso. The UTEP defense that hasn't been there some games - much of some decades - was there.
UTEP is 5-5 with two games to play because Joe Banyard shrugged his shoulder pads, and ran fast, on a night two teams were plugging away in the trenches.
A real block-and-tackle football game, and a UTEP win in Utepia