EL PASO, Texas – The UTEP men’s basketball team (13-16, 6-12 C-USA) will open the final week of the regular season and its last homestand by playing host to WKU (15-14, 7-11 C-USA) at 7 p.m. MT Thursday.
The Miners will be vying for a season split in the series after being held off on the road, 74-69, on Feb. 4. UTEP went 1-1 on its roadswing through the “Sunshine State,” posting a wire-to-wire 87-82 win at FIU on Feb. 23 before falling at 2023 C-USA regular-season champion Florida Atlantic, 75-49, on Feb. 25, last time out.
The Hilltoppers were 1-1 last week as well, most recently sustaining a 72-60 defeat at the hands of UAB at home on Feb. 25 on Senior Day. UTEP is 10-6 on the season at home (3-5 C-USA), but it is vying to snap a four-game skid in the Sun City. The Miners will be closing out the regular season at home in back-to-back seasons for the first time since a three-year run (2014-15 through 2016-17).
The contest against WKU is the first of two at home to wrap up the 2022-23 regular season, with the Orange and Blue playing host to Middle Tennessee for “Senior Day” at 12 p.m. MT Saturday. The Miners will be vying for a season split with the Blue Raiders, in addition to taking aim at their fourth consecutive victory on Senior Day.
WKU leads the series, 7-1, including a 74-69 win against the Miners in Bowling Green, Ky., on Feb. 4, earlier this season. Thursday’s match-up will mark the first time that the two sides will be squaring off twice in a year.
It is also the first visit to El Paso for the Hilltoppers since the 2017-18 campaign and just the third all time. UTEP is 1-1 vs. WKU at the Don Haskins Center, with the win coming in OT in front of a capacity crowd as part of the 50-year celebration of the Miners winning the 1966 NCAA Championship vs. Kentucky, 72-65.