EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – UTEP is 2-0 for the first time since 2005, but the Miners have had very little time to celebrate. With this week’s game against Boise State coming on Friday night, head coach Dana Dimel has started the team’s preparation a day early.
Dimel spoke with the media Monday in advance of the team’s road game against the Broncos. His full comments can be viewed below.
Kickoff is slated for 7:30 p.m. MT. The Miners and Broncos will be televised on FS1.
Head Coach Dana Dimel
“This is an interesting week for us because of the short preparation time that we have with the game being played on Friday night and having a late game on Saturday. It’s a short week for us and we really tried to tweak some things in preparation for Boise State. We have some meetings yesterday and got some preparation on Boise, and as well watching the Bethune-Cookman tape, getting that studied and corrected on mistakes from that. Also learning what we did and did not do well in that game. We studied Boise tape, not only because of the time frame, just because of their new head coach. He brings a lot of stuff with from Oregon but was also there a couple years ago at Boise. So, there’s a lot of things there from Boise that he brought back to Boise that they’ve done in the past. They do a nice job of coaching the defense, very sound and disciplined. It’s an aggressive defense that does a lot of good things. Offensively, their quarterback has a lot of experience. He’s a talented quarterback who has the ability to spin the ball really well. They have good backs who are outstanding players and have really good skill at the wide receiver position. They have a lot of speed on their offense and defense.”
On the win against Bethune-Cookman:
“Reflecting back on Bethune-Cookman, a lot of positive things. I thought our offensive line played extremely well, I thought they really got into a good groove and did a lot of nice things. Our running backs, we went deeper with our running back. I talked about getting Willie Eldridge a chance and he really stepped up. Ray Flores did some nice things when he got his chances in there. The fullback/tight end did a great job blocking. It was nice to see Jeremiah Ballard and Tyrin Smith step up and start to contribute more. We’re building some quality numbers at our wide receivers and tight end positions. We’re building depth on our football team. That’s what last Saturday’s was all about that, getting guys reps and building depth. We got our second win and now we move on this week to a bigger challenge.”
On running the ball extensively against Bethune-Cookman:
“I just think it got to the point it was something we needed to do at the time to close the game out and not show too much of schemes and things. I didn’t want be too elaborate on schematic things in this game. I think when we threw the ball, we threw it well. Gavin’s completion percentage was in the 60’s and he also had some drops. If he didn’t have the drops, he’s probably in the 70’s with his completion percentage. We threw the ball when we needed to throw the ball, and I thought he threw a vertical that was just really outstanding to Tyrin [Smith]. Gavin did some nice things and we ended up having three touchdown passes in one game, which is really good for us. It was a well-balanced effort, but it was one of those things where we wanted to take control of it on ground and close out the game that way.”
On the positive progression of the tight ends:
“We’re really trying to get them more and more incorporated. They’re obviously blocking their tails off in the run game. Trent [Thompson] had a nice catch the touchdown; it was really good to get a touchdown pass to Trent. We want to get Trent more involved and Zach [Fryer] more involved in the passing game.”
On UTEP matching up against Boise State:
“I have a lot of respect for [Boise State]. They’ve earned and proven what kind of football team they are. They’ve done some tremendous things over the years, and when you do tremendous things you’re able to recruit tremendous players. They have got as good of talent that we’re going to face all year. They’re deep, strong, fast and big.”