Jim Cowsert-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

SMU vs. UTEP: Mustangs get back on track

A return to C-USA did wonders for SMU, as they got their first win against an FBS team on Saturday night with a 17-0 road victory over UTEP.

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SMU tied for second in CUSA

Despite a 2-3 overall record, the SMU Mustangs are tied for second place in the Conference USA West division, with a 1-0 in-conference record.


SMU vs. UTEP final: Mustangs win 17-0

The SMU Mustangs earned their second win of the season, beating the UTEP Miners, 17-0, on Saturday at Sun Bowl Stadium in El Paso.

Former University of Texas quarterback Garrett Gilbert was 22-of-44 for 234 yards, one touchdown and one interception for SMU, as defenses on both sides of the ball controlled the flow of the game. The Mustangs produced 367 yards of offense in the game, with running back Zach Line leading the rushing attack with 84 yards on 25 carries.

UTEP quarterback Nick Lamaison was just 9-of-23 for 131 yards and two interceptions, while Carson Meger added only 47 yards through the air on 7-of-16 passing. The Miners managed 178 yards passing in the game, turning the ball over three times.

Box Score Hero: The SMU defense shut out UTEP, forcing three turnovers and allowing just 285 yards of total offense.

Rankings Ramifications: Neither team should have any worries about rankings.

But Did They Cover? SMU easily covered, with UTEP favored by 1 point headed into the game.

For More On This Game: For more on SMU football, visit SB Nation Dallas. And you should probably start reading Big East Coast Bias. For more on Miners football, visit UTEP blog Miner Rush.

Next Week's Schedule: UTEP travels to Tulsa on Oct. 11, with kickoff set for 8 p.m. ET. SMU will take on Tulane on Oct. 13, with kickoff at 1 p.m. ET.

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This story was originally published on SB Nation.com.


Mustangs lead 17-0 at the half

The SMU Mustangs lead UTEP 17-0 at halftime on Saturday night in El Paso, Texas.

SMU took a 3-0 lead in the final minute of the first quarter when Chase Hover's 19-yard field goal capped a 14-play, 64-yard drive by the Mustangs. After the teams traded punts to start the second quarter, quarterback Garrett Gilbert finished a 65-yard touchdown drive with a 40-yard yard touchdown pass to Darius Johnson to give SMU a 10-0 lead over UTEP.

The Mustangs took a 17-0 lead late in the half when Ja'Gared Davis returned an interception 30 yards for a touchdown.

Gilbert, the former University of Texas quarterback, was 13-of-28 for 154 yards an interception and a touchdown in the first half. Zach Line led the Mustang rushing attack with 53 yards on 15 carries.

The Mustang defense was the big story of the first half, however, holding the Miners to just 128 total yards and five first downs in the half. UTEP was 1-for-7 on third down and turned the ball over twice, including the inception thrown by Nick Lamaison in the second quarter.


SMU vs. UTEP: Game time, tv schedule and more

SMU will look for their first Conference USA win when they head to El Paso to face UTEP on Saturday.


SMU's secondary gets bit again by injury bug

As SMU prepares for its Conference USA opening tilt against the University of Texas-El Paso this Saturday, the Mustangs' secondary unit will not be operating close to full strength after enduring another injury to a key player.

Starting safety Ryan Smith, who was hurt in the team's 24-16 loss to TCU on Saturday, will be out for the remainder of the season, according to a report by Bill Nichols of The Dallas Morning News.

Smith joins defensive backs Horace Richardson, who was also lost for the year with a knee injury, and J.R. Richardson, who was hurt in the team's training camp, as members of the secondary on the shelf as the Mustangs face a Miners team averaging 208.4 passing yards per game.

Freshman defensive back Shakiel Randolph will make his first start at SMU in place of Smith, and head coach June Jones expects him to rise to the occasion.

"He's going to be a real good player,'' Jones said in the report. "Shakiel's all of a sudden a starter now. He can't be a freshman anymore.''


UTEP head coach Mike Price on the hot seat

It's looking more and more likely that UTEP Miners head coach Mike Price won't be back with the team after this season.

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