North Texas Daily

North Texas seeks momentum in postponed matchup against UTEP

North Texas seeks momentum in postponed matchup against UTEP

North Texas seeks momentum in postponed matchup against UTEP
October 29
19:47 2020

On Tuesday, North Texas’ (2-3, 1-2 Conference USA) game against UTEP (3-3, 0-2 C-USA) at El Paso was postponed, according to a press release from the North Texas athletics department. The postponement comes after a recent surge in COVID-19 cases in El Paso, with the daily positive test rates reaching high enough to demand a stay-at-home order — prompting both teams to work together to reschedule the game.

North Texas looks for back-to-back wins in conference play after beating Middle Tennessee (2-5, 2-3 C-USA) 52-35. Sophomore quarterback Jason Bean led North Texas to another program-record performance with 768 total yards on offense. Bean previously broke the record in their first game of the season against Houston Baptist (1-3, 0-0 Southland Conference).

Head coach Seth Littrell named Bean the starter this week, before the game was postponed, and believed he could provide a threat to the style of the Miner’s defense.

“He’s a strong matchup for anybody with his athleticism,” said Littrell. “The thing with Bean is he can throw it around but if he needs to, he can get you out of trouble with his legs. He’s athletic enough in space that once you give him an opening, he can take it to the house, so that’s definitely a threat.”

North Texas comes into the game as the No. 1-ranked offense in the conference with almost 3000 yards of total offense. The Mean Green is also ranked last in conference for total defense.

Bean threw for 181 yards and two touchdowns against Middle Tennessee. He also rushed for 169 yards and three touchdowns in his record-breaking performance.

North Texas rushed for a total of 462 yards with three different players rushing for more than 100 yards.

“It’s amazing to have not one but multiple solid running backs,” Bean said. “It’s not only helping me in the running game but it’s helping the receivers and opening up the passing game really well.”

Other than Bean’s three-touchdown rushing performance, senior running back DeAndre Torrey also had his best game of the season on the ground with 143 yards rushing and two touchdowns.

Torrey is confident the fast pace of the Mean Green offense can potentially exploit the UTEP defense.

“They’re not used to the tempo and we’re a high-tempo team,” Torrey said. “I’ve seen them get fatigued on film, so I think that our tempo will definitely tire them out and we should be able to roll on them.”

The Miners recorded their highest offensive output of the season with 28 points last week against the Charlotte 49ers (2-2, 2-1 C-USA). It was not enough to secure a win, as the 49ers outscored the Miners 38-28.

Sophomore quarterback Gavin Hardison leads the UTEP offense along with freshman running back Deion Hankins. Hankins recorded his third game with over 100 rushing yards last week against Charlotte and has six touchdowns so far in 2020. Hardison has thrown for 1,260 yards in six games with four touchdowns and five interceptions.

Sophomore wide receiver Jacob Cowing and senior wide receiver Justin Garrett head the receiving core for the Miners. Their stats combine for 960 yards receiving and three touchdowns.

A win against UTEP can give North Texas enough momentum to finish the year on a strong note, Littrell said.

“The more wins you put on top of each other, the more it builds confidence and continuity,” Littrell said. “Once you gain that momentum, it builds morale, excitement and energy. We can’t lose momentum.”

As of Tuesday, the game is still being adjusted for a later date, the North Texas Daily will provide updates when the new game date is announced.

Featured Image: Redshirt sophomore quarterback Austin Aune prepares to make a pass against Charlotte on Oct. 10, 2020. Image by Zachary Thomas

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Jarrett Farley

Jarrett Farley

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