UTEP lost to what good home teams do, go on at least one big scoring run on Wednesday. But just digest this score: Southern Miss won 45-39. It was not a halftime score.
Good home teams usually have a rally. And, in the second half, Southern Miss outscored UTEP 13-0 to take the lead for good. A 13-0 run in a 45-39 game means:
1. UTEP continues to play winning defenese; its strategy to stop opponents' top scorers has been a positive all season. That's good coaching.
2. UTEP's offense is miserable! Just awful. Drives to the basket? Ohhhh, no good! That's, well, can the rostered Miners become scorers or not? If not? More 45-39s.
UTEP is now 14-11 and wasn't going anywhere in the post season, anyway. Now it's not going anywhere even more. Its 7-5 Conference USA record? No big shakes in a truly weak league.
It was a season-defining night in Mississippi for UTEP - it's first-half nine-point lead fizzled because of a just-plain terrible offense.