EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – On Wednesday, UTEP announced that less than 3,000 tickets remained for Saturday’s season-opening clash vs. North Texas at the Sun Bowl.

At this point, a sellout is not only something to hope for; it might be a sure thing. If it happens, it’ll be the first sellout since 2008 vs. Texas.

With over 40,000 fans set to crowd into the venue, Dana Dimel and the Miners are looking to learn from the last time they played in front of a big home crowd.

In November of 2021, No. 16 UTSA came to the Sun Bowl to square off with the Miners, in what turned out to be a 44-23 win for the Roadrunners. Over 31,000 fans watched UTEP play that night, in an atmosphere that was unlike anything most of the current roster has seen.

Albeit against a very good opponent, Dimel said earlier this week that the Miners didn’t play very well in that game; they’re hoping that the experience of playing in front of an amped home crowd one year ago will help UTEP be unphased on Saturday.

“It was the first time we had played in that type of situation. I think we’ve got to make sure we stay really focused on our preparation, but we’ve got to go out and play aggressively,” Dimel said. “That’s going to be a big part of what we need to do. They need to play aggressively, play with confidence and attack in any situation they can attack in and not feel like because of the big crowd we have to be tentative.”

The spread for Saturday’s game is currently even; a large Sun Bowl crowd could make all the difference for the Miners. Kickoff between UTEP and North Texas is set for 7 p.m.