Seven Bowl Teams Line 2009 UTEP Football Schedule
March 19, 2009
The UTEP football team has another demanding slate in store for 2009. The Miners will take on seven teams that went to bowl games a year ago, including Big 12 powerhouses Kansas and Texas.
"It is by far the most competitive schedule that we have had here at UTEP," head coach Mike Price said. "It will be very exciting to start the season with six of our first seven games against bowl teams."
In addition to hosting Kansas on Sept. 12, the Miners will also meet Buffalo (Sept. 5), Houston (Oct. 3) and Tulsa (Oct. 21) in the Sun Bowl. Kansas was 12-1 in 2007 and 8-5 in 2008 and has posted bowl wins in each of the last two years. Buffalo finished 8-6 in 2008 and played in the International Bowl. Houston (8-5) and Tulsa (11-3) claimed victories in the Armed Forces and GMAC Bowls, respectively, in 2008.
UTEP will also play at Texas on Sept. 26, at Memphis on Oct. 10 and at Rice on Nov. 21. The Longhorns will be hosting the Miners for only the third time ever and the first time since 1933. Texas capped a 12-1 campaign with a 24-21 win over Ohio State in the 2009 Fiesta Bowl. Memphis participated in the inaugural magicJack St. Petersburg Bowl last year, and Rice's record-setting 10-win season come to a close with a 38-14 thumping of Western Michigan in the Texas Bowl.
The Miners will kick off the 2009 season with back-to-back home games versus Buffalo and Kansas and play five of their first seven contests in the friendly confines of the Sun Bowl. That includes a nationally televised (ESPN) game on Wednesday, Oct. 21 against Tulsa.
UTEP's annual rivalry game with New Mexico State is set for Sept. 19 in Las Cruces. The Miners will play at Memphis and host UAB (Oct. 31) and Marshall (Nov. 28) in a copycat of their 2005 Conference USA schedule.
The Miners were one win away from bowl eligibility in 2008 and return eight starters on offense and seven starters on defense. UTEP welcomes back junior quarterback Trevor Vittatoe, who threw for 3,274 yards and 33 touchdowns last season, as well as standout receivers Kris Adams (50 catches-958 yards-14 TDs in 2008) and Jeff Moturi (116 catches-1,546 yards-22 TDs the last two years). The defense is expected to benefit mightily from the return of Braxton Amy, who led the team in tackles with 112 in 2007 before missing last season due to injury.
UTEP football season ticket prices have been lowered in most locations for the fall. Season tickets are available now by calling (915) 747-6150.
2009 UTEP Football Schedule