UTEP kicker Dakota Warren converted an 18-yard field goal as time expired in El Paso tonight, giving the Miners a 16-13, come-from-behind win over the Tigers. Memphis didn’t trail until that final play, leading the game with less than six minutes to play before Warren tied it with a 27-yard field goal.
The loss drops Memphis to 1-3, 0-2 in Conference USA play. UTEP improves to 3-1 (1-1).
The Tigers held the ball almost 10 minutes more than UTEP, though the teams each gained a total of 288 yards. (The Miners’ game-winning drive began on their own four-yard-line with 3:13 to play.) The U of M offense was evenly split, with 144 yards coming on the ground, 144 through the air.
Freshman quarterback Ryan Williams completed 20 of 30 passes and connected with Jermaine McKenzie on a 15-yard touchdown pass late in the second quarter that gave Memphis a 10-3 lead at the half. Jerrell Rhodes led the Tiger ground attack with 90 yards on 23 carries.
UTEP quarterback Trevor Vittatoe came into the game averaging 271 passing yards per game and was held to exactly 100 yards under that figure.
The victory is UTEP’s first in four games against Memphis.
The Tigers return home next Saturday to host Tulsa at the Liberty Bowl. Kickoff is 6 p.m.