EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – After taking UTEP to the postseason for the first time in seven years in his first season in El Paso, Joe Golding had to replace 10 players via the NCAA Transfer Portal last offseason.

The lack of continuity showed, as the Miners struggled to a 14-18 mark this past winter. But as UTEP puts together its roster for Golding’s third year in El Paso, it looks a little bit like what he had in year one structurally.

That means that the Miners will have continuity that they didn’t have in 2022-23. With the deadline to enter the transfer portal coming up this Thursday (May 11), Golding told KTSM on Tuesday that he expects to have nine total players from last year’s roster return – seven scholarship, two walk-ons – including leading scorer Tae Hardy and third-leading scorer, Calvin Solomon.

The Miners have made four new additions already including transfers Corey Camper (Tyler Junior College) and Baylor Hebb (Colorado State), as well as a pair of high school players. Golding feels like they’re in a much better position now than they were a year ago at this time.

“We still have two scholarships to fill, but at this time last year we still had six or seven left to fill in the portal,” Golding said. “There’s a lot more comfort level with our team with where we’re at and then we have some guys coming back that I’m excited about.”

Golding said that the Miners have two scholarships remaining to use on transfer players. They’d like to secure a guard that can contribute immediately with one of the spots, then use the second scholarship to find the next-best player available.

UTEP will have an NIL collective this year that has helped with recruiting, according to Golding. They did not have one a year ago, but the addition of it this year has already paid some dividends.