The moment we've all been waiting for is finally here. Ok, well the moment I've been waiting for is finally here. If you've noticed, today SB Nation launched the project called United that we've been talking about over the last few weeks. Along with a brand new image, we will now be able to present to you all with more quality content than ever before.
I hope you all enjoy the changes, and I hope that you all will take more control of this site as your own, because that's what it is. Your site. With that, here is what's going on around UTEP sports, Conference USA, and the rest of the country as well.
AROUND MINER NATION
Starting Safety Richard Spencer Out for Remainder of Season
The worst nightmare for the UTEP football team came true when star safety Richard Spencer went out with a knee injury in the third quarter of Saturday's game against Wisconsin. The Miners were able to make it through the majority of their brutal non-conference run without any major injuries, but that all ended when Spencer went down.
The sad thing in this situation was that it wasn't a blow to the knee, or someone rolling up on his leg that caused the injury. Spencer was coming off a block to try and make the tackle, his cleat got caught in the turf, and his knee hyperextended. It was tough break for a great player. His production will be missed.
Here's what coach Price had to say about the injury:
"I think Richard Spencer's career is over. We may petition for another year for him. But he has an ACL injury...Safety was not a concern for us going into the season. Wesley Miller can play. Shane Huhn has done a great job. He is vastly improved. Gage Sharp has done a great job in special teams. So they'll be playing now. And DeShawn Grayson, of course, is the guy back there."
Whoever replaces Spence is the defensive backfield may be an extremely capable player, but they will certainly have some big shoes to fill as the senior had already racked up 36 tackles before he went out. No matter how you put it, this is a huge loss for the Miners. We'll see who, if anyone, can pick up the slack.
UTEP Volleyball Players Earn C-USA Player of the Week Honors
UTEP volleyball players Jeane Horton and Malia Patterson were both given Conference USA player of the week honors as they helped lead the Miners past both Southern Miss and ECU over the weekend. Horton was named the offensive player of the week, after racking up 34 kills last week. Patterson was named the co-setter of the week after posting 54 assists against Southern Miss, and 42 against ECU. Congratulations to both on receiving those honors.
AROUND CONFERENCE USA
Tulane Honors Injured Player Devon Walker
Devon Walker, a Tulane defensive back who fractured his spine weeks ago, was honored on Saturday as the Green Wave took on Ole Miss in New Orleans. Tulane sported Walker's #18 on the left side of their helmets, while Ole Miss had DW decals on the back of their helmets.
Walker's jersey was also displayed before the game, and shirts with his name and number were sold in an effort to raise money to help support Walker. Latest update on Walker is that he is in stable condition at an out of state rehabilitation facility. Continued thoughts and prayers go out to him and his family.
Rice Transfer Araslan Kazemi Enrolls at Oregon
Rice transfer Arsalan Kazemi has transferred to, and is enrolled at the University of Oregon. The former Conference USA star felt that the Ducks were the best for him, saying:
"I decided to come to Oregon...I think it was a situation for me, I had to look at a lot of schools, and I think this was the best situation for me. So I decided to come to Oregon."
Kazemi plans to apply for a hardship waiver that would allow him to become eligible immediately. It is unclear on what grounds he intends to apply for the waiver, but if it is granted, Kazemi will make a trip to a familiar place this season, the Don Haskins Center right here in El Paso. The Miners take on the Ducks on December 19th.
Old Dominion QB Sets Passing Record
While this may not officially be Conference USA news, as the Monarchs have yet to join the conference, ODU quarterback Taylor Heinicke set the NCAA Division 1 record Saturday by throwing for 730 yards in a 64-61 come from behind victory over New Hampshire.
Heinicke, a sophomore, will likely still be the quarterback for the Monarchs when they begin playing Conference USA opponents in 2014. As reported before, they will join the conference in football until 2015, but have already asked C-USA to help with scheduling beginning in the 2014 season.
AROUND THE COUNTRY
BCS Says 6 Sites in Running for 15' Championship Game
According to ESPN.com, sources have confirmed that only 6 cities will be considered to host the first ever championship game in the new BCS playoff format. On top of the current four BCS cities (Glendale, Miami, Pasadena, and New Orleans), Arlington, TX and Atlanta, GA will be considered.