The UTEP Miners will look to end their 16-game losing streak dating back to last season Saturday at UTSA at 5 p.m.
Both teams enter the contest with disappointing starts to 2018 so far.
The Miners are 0-4 after falling to rival NMSU this past weekend, while UTSA is 1-3 with its lone win coming Saturday at home against Texas State. The Roadrunners have three lopsided losses against Power Five teams this season (Arizona State, Baylor, and Kansas State).
While the Miners came up a bit short in a 27-20 loss against NMSU recently, they believe they were good enough to win that game, if not for a few costly mistakes, including a punt return touchdown and fumble return score by NMSU.
“Confidence is a gigantic, gigantic thing for football teams. Momentum leads to confidence and success leads to momentum and confidence both. I think that our team really is gaining confidence,” said UTEP head coach Dana Dimel.
Though the Miners do have the longest active losing streak in the country, they also are treating their conference opener against UTSA as a new beginning.
“Guys can see that we’re starting to play at a level that we can win these games, win a road game and have a chance,” said Dimel. “If we can do that, then gosh, you’ve got a ton to play for because you can come out and start off conference play at 1-0.”
UTEP also has one peculiar stat working in its favor Saturday. The Miners have met UTSA a total of five times since the Roadrunners joined Conference USA in 2013. The road team has won all five meetings thus far. That included UTEP’s dramatic win on the road two years ago when the Miners claimed a 52-49 victory in five overtimes.