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Lobos Pack: UTEP game preview and prediction

Rivalry battle in Albuquerque

Boise State v New Mexico Photo by Sam Wasson/Getty Images


UTEP Miners vs. New Mexico Lobos


University Stadium in Albuquerque, NM


Saturday September 17, 2022, at 6:00 p.m. Mountain Time


The game will be streamed online on the Mountain West Network, in Albuquerque it will be on MY 50TV. On the radio waves it will be carried on the Lobo Sports Radio Network, 96.3 FM/770 AM in Albuquerque.


New Mexico leads the series 43-33-3. Last season the Miners won by a final of 20-13 in El Paso after the Lobos squandered a 13-3 halftime lead.


The New Mexico Lobos will look to get back on track when they play host to the UTEP Miners on Saturday night inside University Stadium in Albuquerque.

The Lobos are coming into the contest at a 1-1 record following a 31-14 loss to Boise State last Friday night.

The Miners are 1-2 this season. Last week the Miners got their first win of the season by beating New Mexico State by a final of 20-13. UTEP has lost to Oklahoma and North Texas this season.



New Mexico will be looking to run the ball a ton on the Miners suspect rush defense.

Over three games, UTEP has given up an average of 203 yards per game on the ground. Last week against New Mexico State, the Miners gave up 187 yards rushing.

Expect a heavy dose of Nathaniel Jones and Sherod White tonight for New Mexico.

Miles Kendrick had no time to pass last week against Boise State, tonight should be a different story. Expect a lot of short routes and the occasional deep shot to try to stretch the field for UNM.


The Lobos defense is playing like the defenses of the first Rocky Long coaching era.

New Mexico has given up just 81 yards on average on the ground so far this season and have racked up five sacks throughout their two games this season.

The Lobos will continue to blitz the snot out of the opposition. The disguises and blitzes from anywhere ought to confusing for the Miners offense.

What to expect from UTEP:

The Miners rely heavily on their passing game. Averaging 245 yards per game through the air this season, UTEP throws the ball nearly 60% of the time on offense.

That amount of passing should test UNM, but also could play into the Lobos’ hands with the pass rush that they apply.

Tyrin Smith and Reynaldo Flores are the top two receivers for UTEP on the season. Smith has 20 receptions and Flores has 19 this year. The next closest receiver has seven catches on the year.

Gavin Hardison is the UTEP signal caller that the Lobo fans will get used to hearing and seeing this evening. He has completed just over 51% of his passes this season for 703 yards and two touchdowns. Hardison does well taking care of the ball, having no interceptions and just one fumble lost on the season.

Final Thoughts and Prediction:

The Lobos defense looked really solid against Boise State last week, the offense, not so much. Right now, the Lobos are a 2 ½ point underdog to the Miners. I find that really odd considering UTEP has struggled in every game this season, including against a bad New Mexico State team last week.

Not only would I take the Lobos to cover in this one, but I also expect them for the outright win. New Mexico’s defense plays way too well for them to be torched through the air, and the ground game for UNM should dominate. I like the Lobos to win, 27-10.